Felieke van der Leest
The above brooch is made by Felieke van der Leest. Felieke is a dutch artist, who uses crochet in many of her objects. She is an educated metalsmith from Schoonhoven’s technical school in the Netherlands and studied at an art academy in Amsterdam. Her work has been exhibited in many museums and galleries in Europe, the USA and Japan.
Most of her works shows miniature animals that resemble plastic animals from toy stores. These mass produced toys are cut, rejoined and equipped with crocheted garments that give them human attributes and which lends them a surreal presence. The unusual combination of plastics, silver and gold adds to the unreal world her animals appear to live in.
Some of the objects are sheer fun to watch: Pippi Longstockings Smarties horse, lions with golden cowboyhats or the rabbit wheeling its carrots.
Others appear to be more subtle observations on human culture and the way we enjoy to entertain ourselves in our leisure time. It is not bambi that looks bizarre with the castagnettes and huge earrings or the swan with the desire for sports medals. We are exposed as crazy creatures with bizarre habits.
Felieke says, she went back to crochet in 1996 in her graduation year. She makes small editions of her pieces, mostly 4-8, and writes down a pattern for each one. As a crochet tool she uses a 1mm hook and very thin machine embroidery threads. Her many technical abilities result in these refined artpieces.
You can see many of her jewelry items at her website Felieke van der Leest.