Some class proposals jump out of the pile and beg for attention…you can hear them scream “Pick me, Pick me!” And then when you read about the artist, you just want to invite her for a cup of tea and a good, long chat because your heart tells you there will be a lot of laughter during the afternoon…Meet Elizabeth Green Musselman.
She’ll be teaching two classes at Fiber College this year; on Friday, Knitting our History and on Saturday morning she’ll teach Beyond Buttons: Learn New Ways to Close a Cardigan.
I haven’t had a chance to ask her yet, but I’m hoping that she’ll agree to doing a demonstration/talk during the weekend too…more on that later…in the meantime, Elizabeth says…
1. The unauthorized biography of your life is titled:
You Wouldn’t Like Me When I’m Yarnless
2. If forced to choose, would you be an eraser or a permanent magic marker?
Permanent magic marker. I say this wishing I were really that fearless, but I have a lot of eraser in me.
3. Do you live with any animals?
Two human animals, two cat animals, and many nasty, hidden cockroach animals.
4. What are you currently reading?
Robert Silverberg’s The World Inside
My son still wanting to wear the garments that I have knit for him.
6. How do you know when your work is done?
When someone pries it from my grasping fingers.
7. What do you listen to while you create?
Podcasts! I love love love them. My current favorite is the Knitajourney Podcast.
8. Why do you (knit, quilt, spin, carve, design…)? What is your purpose?
One of my purposes is to have my loved ones continue to love me. Also, fiber art has shown me that I actually am a creative person. I never thought that I was.
9. What do you know that you don’t know?
I know that I don’t know how to knit fast enough!
10. How does, or should, the word “passion” relate to an artist?
It should be your great aunt. And she should live really close by. And she should never be busy when you want to come over.
11. Looking back, knowing what you know now, is there anything that you would do differently?
I can think of a million things I’d like to have done differently. But then I think about having to relive junior high school and I shudder uncontrollably.
12. A lot of artists want to be famous, and some just want to make a living doing what they love. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I’m going for it. After more than 15 years in academia, I am making the plunge into a life as a full-time knitting teacher, designer, and writer. If you look closely at my forehead, you can see the beads of sweat that are my terror about how all this is going to work out. But I’m excited, too.
13. If you could give advice to anyone aspiring to work with fibers, what would it be?
Find a few designers online whose work you love and who are under the age of 30. (Ysolda Teague? She’s 25.) Notice how fearless they are. What have you got to lose?
14. When it’s time to “tap” your creativity…where do you go to get the juices flowing?
All over the place. I love a good yarn store, of course. Because I design garments mostly for boys, I learn a lot from talking to my son about what he would like to wear. He gives me great ideas. And if I really need a boost, I look at Norah Gaughan’s designs… and then I weep a little inside at her genius.
15. How many projects do you generally have going at one time?
One in my hands, but five or six others sitting around moaning in baskets, on shelves, and in bags.