Monday, July 26, 2010
Craft fair? Should have called it Craft Affair.
But what about those of us whose proclivities shy away from the peelers and peep shows? Fear not! Another red light district has popped up on the other side of the Yarra River in the Melbourne Exhibition Center! And I would wager that most of the women lining up here were being unfaithful. They were having an affair at the fair. You could see it on their faces - guilty pleasure. Women casually passing by a wall of yarn, gentling passing their fingers over the wool. CHEATERS! Fabric displays filled with fat-quarters and women pinching and pulling on the squares. CHEATERS!! Embroidery threads unwound and held up to the light. CHEATERS!!! Women layered 5 rows deep, all on tippy toes, craning their necks to get a better view of the $5 wooden bag handles. CHEATERS!!!! It was one gigantic peep show! And all these women were crafting two-timers.
Liz, our felting madame, introduced us to the colourful silks and generous wools, the soapy warm water and the PVC mats and plastic sheets we would use to bind our felt and roll it. With two flat fingers, Liz showed us how to pluck out the fibers and gently lay them onto the flat felt back ground.
The whole time, we created a spectacle. Ladies passed by and paused for a second look, cautiously nudging a friend and pointing with their eyes, 'Oh, that looks like fun.' As we were agitating fibers, woman after woman pulled out $30, $40, or $50 to share in this unique experience, emboldened by those of us already inside. Felting was FUN!!
My friend might be cheating too.
Look at that smile. Is that the smile of a crafting two-timer? I don't know... She is a knitter. And from the way she looked at anything woollen I would imagine she wasn't cheating. It was kind of pious as a matter of fact, like a deep communion she had with spun wool. I, on the other hand, had a dark temptation that saw me caress a skein of tangerine orange wool unlike any other and imagine all the things I could create with it. No, my friend wasn't a two-timing knitter. Felting is related to knitting because you work with wool.
But I think she may be cheating with silk scarves.
Time wasted to date: 23 hours