Many of you are probably aware of the new version of Jane Crowfoot ‘s Frida, and now, that the blanket has been published , I can tell you about this amazing project I have been so privileged to be involved with!
I will start by saying that I have been a fan of Jane’s work for a long time , I have most of her publications and,over the years, I have collected her patterns
and I followed both CAL she made in collaboration with Stylercraft: the LILY POND and the original FRIDA, both of which I made the blanket in a larger size.
My Lily pond is in Italy with my mum , I still got the original Frida at home. here is a photo of them both:
Before working together I met Jane briefly at Ally Pally, Yarndale and at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival, as I always make a point to visit her lovely stall, and I always found her and Andy really polite and helpful regardless of the crowds that always surrounds them at shows.
So when I became a Blogstar I was thrilled that she was part of the group and in February at, my first Blogstars meeting, I had a proper chance to chat with her.
Jane was particularly interested in how I mix colors and yarns in my blankets. I didn’t think much of it, besides been really happy that she was so complimentary about my work, so when I got an email saying if I was interested in re-coloring the Frida I was like ohhh WOWWW!!! I said yes on the spot !!
1stly because I m very impulsive ( comes with the Italian blood),
2ndly because how could I let an opportunity like that pass me by???,
3rdly because I love a challenge.
Then reality settled in and I realized that I had to really raise my game. Blanket designing is my hobby, colors are my work and also my passion, I am very lucky in that sense as I do something I love, having said that it requires a great amount of work, research, trials and a baskets of failed attempts, now if it is just one of my blankets, I am not that fussed as it involves just myself, but working on a commission for someone else it is a totally different story.
I started revisiting Frida Kahlo’s paintings, life, pictures, the environment where she lived, her friends, her house and her studio.
I didn’t want to make a version that was either too pastel or too bright simply because pale hues will have been far too removed from what Frida and her work were about, and a prime colors version would have been far too similar to Janes beautiful piece.
I settled for spring, sea, sun and flowers.
How could I not incorporate the flowers which so often adorned her hair and clothes, the flowers from the beautiful gardens of Casa Azul, the ethnic jewelry with corals and turquoises, beautiful hibiscus and hot pinks from the bougainvilleas, colorful hummingbirds and the odd monkey or two.
I made a few trials and what you see now is the final result of a lot of thought, trials and work; and I really hope you all think I gave both Frida and Jane justice.
I have received a few emails requesting details on colors and the position of them, unfortunately, I can’t provide that because although they are my work and choice the copyrights are Jane’s.
Jane and her team have spent considerable time and money transforming my crude list and details into a fabulous printed brochure which they supply as part of a kit with all the yarn you need plus the printed brochure. The brochure is 7 pages of details and close-ups, each motif has a round by round list of the colors. There is also a final color chart of the entire blanket and the position of the different hexagons.