Friday, March 11, 2011

Fiber Arts Friday - What Would You Do For A Klondike Bar?

What would you do for a Klondike Bar?  (now how about that for a beginning to Fiber Arts Friday?)  Welcome to Fiber Arts Friday!  Each week Fiber Artists from around the world meet here to share their adventures in Fiber Arts.  So...what are you waiting for?  Link your Fiber Arts Blog in and share in the fun.  If you visit, please leave a comment and join the Fiber Arts Fun!

Why, exactly, are Klondike Bars so good?  Why can't they make a dairy free version that is just as yummy?  Curses.  First, I love the good ol' fashion Klondike Bars (at least I did before I found out I'm allergic to dairy) and second, the popularity of the ice cream treat is tied to the catchy marketing campaign.  Really, when there is that much exposure and a jingle that you sing all afternoon long...what do you crave?  A Klondike Bar.  They haven't aired those commercials in ages yet I still find myself singing the tune.  How does that relate to Fiber Arts?  Well...we need more exposure to our amazing community! 

A few weeks ago I shared the gorgeous felted flower that Suzanne Higgs from Hooked on Felt created for me.  I decided to adorn my favorite Gray jacket with this beautiful flower and I have been wearing it around town.  I have also been using the sassy wet felted bag that Heather from Wool love functional art made me.  (Yes, I am spoiled with these gifts and loving it)

I get so many compliments about my gorgeous flower and my sassy bag and I think about all of the other handmade fiber arts items I wear that expose the world to Fiber Arts.  I wear something pretty much every day that I have knitted, has been knitted for me, been felted or woven. Yes, people are used to seeing knitted and crocheted goods but not felted and I find that I wear them with a slightly different attitude (Is it possible for me to be a bit more sassy?  Of course, it is!).  Most knitters assume it has been knitted then fulled to created the felted look.  They don't realize that there is a whole world of felters that are making leaps and strides even in the fashion industry.  Even more so, people just can't wrap their heads around the fact that someone made this gorgeous item. Do you mean they took raw wool and/or roving with a bit of soap and water and created that?  Do you mean it wasn't created in a factory?  Yikes!

With the flower, they are even more blown away that the artist lives right here in Southwest Michigan. do we get the community to crave the Fiber Arts flavored Klondike Bar?  We don't need to cover it with chocolate coated ice cream but...we do need to wear it proudly!  We can't just let these beautiful creations sit in our studios or craft rooms and only wear them to events at the local yarn shop or at Fiber Festivals.  We need to wear them out in public and not shy away when people ask about them or compliment them.  For goodness sake, it isn't the renaissance dress that you bought on a whim only to be pulled out once a year for the next Renaissance's a hand crafted item made with rock star skills. (Yes, I do have a complete outfit for when I attend renaissance festivals...Huzzah!)

Many people see these felted creations and ask if they are made out of Alpaca because they know I raise Alpacas.  How do they know about the Alpaca?  Because I am out there promoting myself and my farm everywhere I go.  I created a farm name that is easily recognizable and have been fortunate to get some amazing press coverage from the local newspapers.  They know who I am. I am the Klondike Bar...ok, maybe that is pushing it but you know where I'm going with this.  It opens the conversation about all of the amazing fiber producing animals out there and Fiber Arts opportunities.  People are amazed to know that there are so many farms in the area that raise fiber producing animals and that we have so many fiber festivals right here in Michigan because I tell them about it and give a mini-lecture when asked.  You would be amazed how many people are curious about fiber arts but just didn't know who to ask or where to go...and that gorgeous flower resting on my lapel was the door that opened them to our world.

So...for this week's fiber arts adventure, I challenge you to be the Klondike Bar.  Go out and share with the world around you the world of fiber arts. Wear your hand felted hat to the school basketball game or pull out your crochet and knitting at the PTA Meeting.   I was knitting at a hockey game the other week. Take your drop spindle to the park or put your needle felted figure on your work desk.  We have a love of fiber arts that should be shared with the world.  Now...what were your Fiber Arts Adventures?

Fiber Arts Friday Blog Carnival! 

To participate:
  1. Submit your blog article using your current blog address NOT your complete blog  i.e. you would submit 
  1. Link back to Fiber Arts Friday from your post so that your readers can come and see everyone else’s projects! Text link to  WISDOM BEGINS IN WONDER!   
  2. Visit as many of the other participants as possible and leave comments! That’s what helps us all connect!
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  1. You make a great point, and I would like to try the Klondike bar of which you speak (mmm chocolate and ice cream). I try to wear my knitted stuff out, but socks are not really noticable, unless I ahem and point until someone notices, which I do occassionally :D Maybe a giant shawl is required

  2. Hi Adrea! Well done and you're absolutely right! I do my best but here people don't value well any handmade - it should be bought expensive and 'name' to be good - blah! Your flower is unique!
    Sunny wishes! Teje

  3. I love knitting in public. Inevitably it opens the door to conversation. Last week at the park, I got NO knitting accomplished because a middle aged man came up to me and asked, "What are you knitting, doll clothes?" (it was a sock!) and we chatted for 2 hours. It lead to conversation about composting...rain barrels...gardening....alpacas(my dream of having some)'s awesome!

  4. Great post! I do my best to get folks interested in anything fiber and of course a little heavier accent on alpaca fiber of course!

    Great flower and you pull it off beautifully!

  5. It's true, when I wear handmade out people always ask (1) if it's alpaca and (2) if I made it. Knitting in public usually invites conversation, which I love. Then those conversations always lead to other topics.

    I think fiber-ing in public is the key to bringing our communities together. :-)

    I'm so glad you're wearing that flower out because it's so freaking fantastic!!

    Happy FAF!

  6. Great post Andrea, and great advice too!

  7. Well, with a conversation opener like that flower, how can you not share fiber love?!!! It is so beautiful!
    Great inspiration this week--I'm off to share fiber arts with the world!

  8. Yes! Creating items to wear from your own alpaca!! Beautiful flower! Happy FAF!

  9. I think we need to wear what we make, talk about how we made it, and work on eliminating stereotypes relating to these crafts. I also hope that people are thoughtful about what they make for sale (especially relating to quality) and how they price it.

  10. You know, you are so right about the power of great marketing. I loved those commercials, was instantly able to recall the brand. Didn't, however, eat many Klondike bars. :)

    I wear something I've made almost every day. In many instances, people ask me about them. It's a really warm feeling.

    Btw, I didn't realize one needed to add the url every Friday. I'll keep that in mind.

    Happy fiber Friday!

  11. Last Saturday I was knitting in line waiting for our table at a super crowded restaurant. The maitre d' girl seated us before others, because she was so impressed with my knitting. That's my contribution to the fiber community ;-)

  12. That felted flower is absolutely stunning on your jacket! And thank you for the inspiration about trying to share our arts more with the communities around us. My mom often demonstrates handweaving at local festivals, etc., and she's always so excited about other people's excitement! I think I'll pin a felted flower brooch I made onto my jacket before I head off on some errands today. :)

  13. Oh yeah - I'm the Klondie Bar! There is knitting squeezed into the diaper bag, and it comes out whenever I get a chance. I love it when someone compliments one of Addy's hats and asks me where I bought it - I love being able to say I MADE it! Whenever someone says "I could never do that", I always tell them to try. I'm delighted when people actually take my advice.
    Oh - and I love that flower pin - beyond beautiful!

  14. Hi - thanks for hosting this party. I'm a new follower of yours and put your party button on my Linky Party page!

  15. Get on with your bad self Klondike!! Now, to create my own super Klondike self!! Tough when I give away or sell just about everything I make.

  16. I am ashamed of what I did for a Klondike Bar.

  17. I'm lactose intolerant so I feel your pain.

  18. I love Klondike bars, ha! Though I haven't eaten one in years. I do try to promote fiber arts as much as possible. That's one way to justify knitting for myself, so I can show off my yarns and handknits everywhere I go, ha!

  19. This is so true... I'm always amazed in talking to people and finding out that they don't deal with fiber on a daily basis. I guess I just assume that everyone does. I'll try to share some Klondike Bar-ness over the weekend.. and damn. Now I want a Klondike Bar.

  20. The fiber arts community is a great one - thanks for spreading the word!

  21. Klondike Bars are really good. I use to eat them once a week. Now I'm on a diet so no chocolate bars for me.