Artists Statement

Kristi Yapp

Freeform Crochet Artist

There is evidence of crochet being used to adorn clothing as early as the late 16th and early 17th century. The word crochet is derived from the Old Norse term “krokr,” meaning hook. The word evolved and became “Croce,” which is Old French for “small hook.”

A technique called tambouring travelled to Europe in the mid 17th century from India, Persia, North America, Turkey and North Africa. This technique used a handheld hook in order to decorate fabrics with braided yarn adornments. In the early 1800s the adorning fabric was removed and a new technique was born- referred to by the French as “crochet in the air.”

Throughout the centuries, women continued to crochet in order to produce and repair warm clothing and blankets for their families and tribes. In the 1960’s, crochet became very popular in the world of fashion- seeing the traditional granny square elevated to display hip, earthy, musical, higher vibration.

I learned crochet from my grandmother in the 1970’s. This art had been passed down by the women of my family throughout time.
We live in a technological age,where mass production and computerized reality have endangered many of the traditional arts and handcrafts, such as knitting, tatting, sewing and crochet. Humans are turning to technology for innovation, entertainment, fulfillment, self image and religion. As a species, we are losing touch with our past, with our abilities, with our connection to nature and with God. It is important to keep these traditions alive as they connect us to to the past, to the earth and to spirituality.

With the goal of keeping a traditional craft alive, while creating art that appeals to a modern audience, I attempt to use the yarn as a form of paint that can create and hold a structure. Inspired by nature, I create wearable art that can be put on display in a space or on a body. Following in the footsteps of centuries of artists and craftsmen, I am a link in an ever evolving chain of creation and innovation with string.