I’m so happy to be interviewing Lauren Pruitt of Lauren Kelley Woven. Lauren has a style that I feel is really fun with unexpected elements and textures. I like that she doesn’t mind taking risks with her colors and design. She is a really nice person too! So let’s get to know more about Lauren’s weaving journey…
How did you first come across weaving?
A couple of years ago, I saw some wall hangings on a few blogs and Instagram and I thought they were very cool. As soon as Rachel Denbow did a tutorial for abeautifulmess.com, I knew that I had to give it a shot. I ordered a peg loom from Amazon, purchased yarn from the local craft store, and made a weekend of it. The process had me hooked and eager to learn as much as I could. I would search Instagram and take screen shots of the pieces I loved. There is a lime, turquoise, kelly green, and cream piece by @Mandismoothhills that I absolutely adored and I set my goal to one day be able to create something just as beautiful, using it for inspiration.
What time of day do you feel most creative?
The morning is the time when I have the strongest motivation and accomplish the most. I have the whole day ahead of me and I am not worn down from work or long list of errands. I work an 8-5 job M-F, so most of my weaving is done on the weekends, but I try to squeeze in some time in the evenings if I am able to.
I enjoy (need haha) a cup of cold brew coffee (or hot latte when the weather is cooler). I like to have a show or movie on to watch or listen to while I weave. My process is pretty slow, so depending on how much I want to accomplish I may choose a show I’ve seen several times such as Golden Girls or Seinfeld. Recently, I have started listening to audiobooks on my commute to work, so I will try doing that instead of television and see how it affects the creative process.
Are you a messy creative or an organized creative?
Organized creative, but not particularly neat. I easily become overwhelmed and unable to focus on the task at hand if things around me aren’t in their proper places, such as dishes in the sink. Also, we have multiple curious cats who enjoy chewing, eating, and hiding items so all of my weaving supplies have to be put out of reach when not being used (for the safety of the cats and the W.I.P.s : )).
Normally, I start out by gathering colors and fibers I want to work with, then I lay them out and think for a while (sometimes a long while) about what design I wish to create. Usually, a rough idea of a design will come to mind and I’ll do a small section to see how the colors and textures are playing together. I am terrible at sketching so I have to see the weaving grow before I can get an idea of what looks best. Sometimes I will take a break from working on a piece for weeks (or even months) at a time until I feel inspired again or have an image pop into my head on how to proceed. Currently, I have five looms so I am able to work on more than one piece at a time.
Do you have a preferred material that you like to use?
I am drawn to thick and thin wool, flax/linen, and naturally dyed materials. The overall abundance of textures and combinations that come with using a variety of materials is fascinating to me.
How is making things important in your life? What does being a maker mean to you?
I sit at a computer and do administrative work most of the day. Being able to escape from that and create something with my own hands, from an image in my mind, is gratifying and humbling. I have a sense of pride about the hours, thought, care, and love poured into each piece. The process is meditative one – it is repetitive and requires patience, allowing me to work out the stresses that come in life. Making brings me joy.
The lavender, gray, and teal piece with indigo asymmetrical loopy fringe is my favorite. I still LOVE the colors and it was the first one I created that really felt like me. It truly feels special.
What advice do you have for those wanting to find their own style?
I am still unsure what my own style is, but I would recommend trying something new with every piece. That is what I try to do. This can be a different design, color, type of material, sideways vs traditional, weaving technique, size, type of dowel, how the ends are finished, etc. Having a new aspect included with each piece will continue the learning process and hopefully open your eyes to some cool experiences, history, and designs. Go for it and have fun!
|| Five mini questions to get to know you a little better ||
Are you a eat in or take out person?
Take out if it is during the week because I only have a limited amount of time at home with Matt and the kitties, plus I like to cook. Eating out at restaurants is fun on the weekends when I can take my time and enjoy the experience and company.
If you could pick your last meal what would it be?
Chips and fresh salsa with a dessert of chocolate cake (from a box) and vanilla bean ice cream.
I don’t believe I have one; my usual answer for this is floral. My closet is filled with blue items because it’s a pretty color and the most flattering for my complexion. I also love chartreuse, gold, and camel. I am partial to ginger cats, but don’t tell the others ; )
Are you a book or movie person? And what is a good one you’d recommend?
Movie, but I am TRYING to be a book person. One book I flew through and recommend to others is Gunn’s Golden Rules by Tim Gunn. He seems like such a delightful person who is compassionate, motivates, and appreciates courteousness. Speaking of someone in the fashion world, my movie recommendation is The Devil Wears Prada. I have watched this movie many times and will reference it from time to time in my daily life. Who doesn’t love Meryl Streep?
Do you prefer relaxing beach vacations or on the move sight-seeing vacations?
Ideally, I would love a combination of the two.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I would like to say how much I have enjoyed being a part of this generous fiber community. Everyone has been so kind and genuinely supportive of one another, as well as a constant source of inspiration.
You can find Lauren Kelley Woven:
My two favorite pieces of Lauren’s would have to be the chartreuse/neutral weave and the wild color shag weave. Those two weaves really jumped out at me that first time I saw them on Instagram. Oh and I may have been living under a rock, but I hadn’t heard too much about cold brew coffee before so I had to ask Lauren a few follow up questions on this. Apparently it makes the coffee stronger, which is pretty interesting and I might just have to try it out.
What is your favorite weave of Lauren’s? Did any of her answers stand out to you? Are you also drinking cold brew coffee?!
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