Students plunge into Hertitage Arts, a rising field, for the Moffat County Fair
Susan Domer and Tilila Gunderson work as 4-H student leaders
July 15, 2016
Craig — Adisen Reuer, an 11-year-old who's been knitting for about three years, offers some advice for other young knitters.
"Don't watch TV while you're doing a project," she said with a laugh, evidently speaking from experience.
Adisen is a past participant in the Heritage Arts project for the Moffat County Fair. And while traveling may prevent her from entering as a 4-H participant this year, she may enter work in the fair's "open" competition.
Adisen said she likes making hats — things she can wear and feel comfortable in and proud of.
"I don't like the ones from the store because the wool feels different — or whatever fiber it's made of," she said. "And I know that I made it, so if there's a problem I'm not blaming the company."
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For the Heritage Arts project, Susan Domer is working with students who are doing the knitting, and Tilila Gunderson is working with students who are working on crochet.
"One of the things that I've seen with a couple of the kids is the (influence) of the wool industry," Domer said. "Some of the girls have family that are in the sheep industry."
Domer added: "It doesn't have to be girls, but right now it is."
At the fair, Domer said, 4-H students will present their projects to judges. The evaluation takes into consideration their products and their presentations, as the judges pose questions to the students about their work.
"They'll also have to do a little historical research," Domer said.
Both Gunderson and Domer recalled doing crochet, or knitting, when they were young children.
"I learned to crochet from my grandmother when I was about 8," Gunderson said.
Domer said she's noticed a resurgence in fiber arts — which includes knitting and crochet — in recent years.
"Both of those arts are really having a resurgence," Domer said. "I volunteer out at Yampa Valley Fiberworks, and we're seeing more and more young adults and other people interested in getting back into the fiber arts."
"I think people are looking for ways to express themselves and be artistic, and this can be an inexpensive way to do it," she said. "I think, too, a lot of people are wanting to make things for themselves and their families."
Domer noted that you don't have to be tech savvy to practice fiber arts. But technology can, as Gunderson noted, introduce a person to new patterns.
"Once you start knitting, that's when technology does help, because there are so many ways to look up patterns and see what other people are doing," Gunderson said.
Domer added that it can be comforting to knit or to crochet.
"It's almost like you can meditate," she said. "You just kind of put yourself into it. The world can be crazy, and politics can be crazy, and you can just pick up your knitting and say, 'I've got rows to knit.'"