Monday, May 30, 2011

A little About Sharon Crystal de Vries

Sharon Crystal de Vries of Chrystal Designs http://chrystalsdesigns.blogspot.com/
(Sharon is having a contest on her blog, so please visit for your chance to win!)
We are always happy when we can feature another doll artist. Today, we are featuring the wonderful knitting of IGMA Fellow Sharon de Vries. I think you will agree that a lifetime of experience shows in her work.Sharon’s career began at the age of four, yes 4, when her mother taught her to knit. Soon, she was knitting and sewing for her Rosebud baby doll. She created large dolls and especially enjoyed the heirloom sewing she used for the undergarments. Sewing for large dolls was so much fun. It was not long before “teddies became the rage” and she created her first knitting patterns for them. She decided on knitting a little teddy dressing gown and the rest is history. She loved baby dolls and knitted her first miniature gown on “Sean”, a sleeping baby. She called the design Candy as it was knitted all in pink. “It was the only baby colour thread I had.”
Sharon believes her specialty is now long baby gowns with the most delicate lace patterns. Some call them Christening gowns, or Blessing gowns, regardless of the name “designing these long gowns seems to please my soul the most.”“I enjoy all the aspects of knitting and crocheting. Doing so in miniature really challenges me as I feel it is vitally important to achieve all the detail in a garment, and yet, producing something so delicate a human mother would enjoy putting on her child.”
In 2009, I achieved IGMA (www.IGMA.org) Artisan. I knitted a version of a leather jacket I had bought my husband in the 70’s, which raised $650.00 for the Guild School at auction. “That felt like Christmas had come early."“My husband Rein, was my third eye. “…I would ask him what he thought, and he would hone into the area I thought needed improvement. One too many buttons, ribbon too fussy, too wide…” Apparently, Rein could see the tree in the forest. At long last since Rein's death, which is nearly 2 years ago already, “I feel I can laugh again and have happy moments, though I miss him so. My children tell me, 'Mom, life goes on’ and so happy are my days spent knitting and designing.”This year, as she had promised Rein she would, she submitted her work for Fellow with IGMA. Moreover, she EARNED it. “I am happy that is behind me.”
Threads excite Sharon and she used the finest she could find on her Fellow submissions. Her commercial designs will continue to be completed using Venne 70/20. The miniature knitting movement is growing and Sharon sees how much more is now available, not only in needles but also in threads and patterns. Sharon’s goals are to publish a knitting book on miniature design and finishing techniques. She will continue to teach and sell her patterns. The only thing I wish is that I could knit anywhere near Sharon, but sadly cast on, knit and purl are the best I can do. Thankfully, we have Sharon, her talents and teaching she shares with us all.

For more articles on miniature knitting and to see more of Sharon’s work, Chrystal Designs, visit her Blog, http://chrystalsdesigns.blogspot.com/
Kathi Mendenhall

3 comments:

Rosamargarita said...

Preciosos trabajos de Sharon, soy su seguidora hace tiempo y no deja de asombrarme, gracias por difundir su arte.

Michelle Mahler said...

I LOVE Sharon's work...especially that little mouse!

Sarah said...

Thank you for posting about this artist. I never would of known to look for an artist that knits miniature items. Your post has opened up a whole new world of art to look at!