Radical Craft

“It’s amazing- I was thinking of using plastic bags to crochet this part, but I couldn’t find any anywhere- you know, because of the ban.”

Yarn Bombers, Paignton Crafters

“It really makes you think how much plastic is in everything, even art materials- acrylic paint, that’s just plastic!"

Mixed Media Mondays, Paignton Crafters

Yarn Bombers

Supporting the Paignton Yarn Bombers to transform a chair within Chrysalis into a welcoming and comfy place to sit that also addressed the themes explored within Chrysalis- biodiversity loss, species extinction, interconnection of nature and human behaviour, and creativity as a tool for exploring topics.

The Yarn bombers are experienced at answering briefs within short time frames, and often work on multiple projects at once.

After several visits and conversations with the group about how the project could work, and potential design concepts, the group decided on a rather organic route- turning the chair into a small hill, a grassy, mossy meadow, complete with a plethora of leaves and local foliage and flowers. A chair from The Lounge in Torquay was chosen to be upcycled as it perfectly fitted the brief, being light and with a wide seat to be accommodating. 

Each member of the group took on a different aspect of the chair, from producing flowers, to crocheting the back and seat panels to cover the wicker chair, making i-cord strands, crocheting leaves, knitting a seagull, knitting bees and mushrooms. The final chair is a complete group effort.

The Yarn Bombers also knitted several birds that are endangered in the UK and nests in which to set them within the van.

Wool was sourced from charity shops in Devon, donated, and also a bag full of handspun wool was generously gifted to the project from the South Devon Spinners.

Mixed Media Mondays

The Mixed Media Mondays group work with a wide variety of media and mediums every monday, often using materials that can be easily found within the home, salvaged from the recycling or purchased easily and cheaply.

After several visits and conversations with the group, it was decided that the windows brief would fit the group well. At the top of Chrysalis, the initial design featured a row of windows constructed from perspex and wine boxes, that the group could collectively design and decorate.

The group enjoyed creating the theme of a timeline, or a cycle, together. A cycle of the day, of the colour spectrum, of the year. The panels were designed to flow between each other, with each member of the group responsible for completing each panel, though they collectively created the final design.

Choosing to use glass paints that they already had, the group painted the panels, ensuring that sections were left blank to include natural light into the designs.

An amendment to the design of Chrysalis led to the panels being displayed over two levels in the finished infill designs.



The Making of Chrysalis

Chrysalis was a mobile arts, culture and learning space made in 2018 - 2019 by the hands and imagination of people living or working in the Bio-Region of South Devon.

To see what’s being made right now for Chrysalis with community groups across South Devon, have a look at the Instagram account.