Monday, August 8, 2011

Flowers & Fiber Flow at Maker Faire Detroit!

Maker Faire Detroit 2011 was filled with makers of many disciplines showing off what they do and inspiring people that they, too, have the power to make.

The waterfall and some flowers went up on the fence of The Henry Ford on Oakwood Blvd. on Friday night, July 29, in anticipation of the festivities July 30 and 31.

This year we were indoors safe from the heat and humidity so (unfortunately) typical of Michigan summers. We engaged Faire goers with the joy and love of knitting and crochet. We taught the basic knit stitch so people could add onto the waterfall as well as some basic crochet stitches to make flowers. Depending on an individual's skill level and/or determination, simple chain flowers to some very sweet picot petal flowers were made.

There were many Faire goers who graced the booth and project with their enthusiasm and generosity. It was fun to see different styles of knitting and crochet and to hear people's stories. I have to give extra special acclaim to a young man who himself was teaching circuit soldering with the Ann Arbor Hand's On Museum. Not only had he never crocheted before, he was left handed with only right handed tutors available. Nevertheless, he persevered with aplomb and surprising agility and made a wonderful flower. It is this spirit and energy that is the embodiment of Maker Faire. It should give us all hope for the next generation that will be in leadership. Thank you, Tyler, for your unwitting gift of optimism.

Thank you all for sharing your time and energy. I am proud to be in the family of fiber with you!

There was interest in the patterns used at Maker Faire. The following are links to the flower patterns used:
String of Flowers
Morning Glory
Picot Flower
(I divided the Picot Flower pattern into individual flowers, so that the inner flower and outer flower became two separate entities.)

I must thank with all my heart the team who pulled this all off. Lisa Cieri, for her work and artistry in constructing and installing the waterfall and flowers. Elizabeth Najduch, who hung in there both days taking pictures, providing tactical and flower-tying support and teaching even though she would have rather been poked in the eye (yet never gave that impression). Carolyn Lynett, who came to cover when there were volunteer cancellations and stayed when those who were supposed to show up never did. Her expertise during those long hours and help in the set-up was invaluable. Daisy Lovain, who heard of this crazy, whimsical project, signed on without question and shared her knowledge and good humor. I truly could not have done it without all of your help and I'm deeply grateful for your benevolence and goodwill.

Now I know why at the Academy Awards they start playing music to get the people off the stage. No project like this can be done in isolation and the collaboration that ensues is humbling and energizing. Thank you to all who infused this project with their self and their spirit. Even though I feel this phrase is overused, in this case it is exactly what I feel in my heart: I am honored by your kindness and thoughtfulness.

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