Overcoming adversities with tapestry crochet
HAND/EYE Contributor Carol Ventura first discovered tapestry crochet in 1976 when she was a Peace Corps volunteer in the village of Jacaltenango in Huehuetenango in the highlands of Guatemala.
After her stint in the Peace Corps, Carol returned to the United States with several colorful bags that most people thought were woven. Curious of the technique used, Carol unraveled the bag to discover that it was made from single crochet but with the twist—two or more yarns are were used at the same time.
On her blog, Tapestry Crochet, she wrote of the technique: “One or more yarns are usually carried while another yarn is crocheted. This technique is also known as hard crochet and used to be called mosaic crochet, jacquard crochet, intarsia, colorwork, and fair isle, but these terms now usually describe different techniques. The finished pieces look woven instead of crocheted.”
Using tapestry crochet, Carol has made colorful baskets and tote bags with repeat geometric patterns, but this form of crochet has another function for Carol: getting though an emotional crisis.
During times of upheaval, Carol’s form of therapy is to make large flat pieces that require counting and concentration. In the video “Pieces of Carol”, she explains how creating art using tapestry crochet helped her deal with her painful divorce and the accompanying stages of denial, depression, anger, and acceptance. At each phase, she crocheted a series of self-portraits with quotes of what she had been feeling.
To view Carol discuss tapestry crochet and its therapeutic benefits, see Pieces of Carol, produced by Megan Grisolano.
Credits: Pieces of Carol, produced by Megan Grisolano
Post Sound Mixing: Dane Dickmann
Music: Brent Johnson
For more information visit www.carolventura.com.