Lydia is a self-taught fiber/mixed-media artist --- inspired by nature and a commitment to reuse and recycle. Her frugal farm family background taught her to work with available resources and as a child she was always searching for new ways to utilize cast-off objects.She learned to sew at age 8 or 9 but quickly became bored following patterns or directions, preferring instead to stretch her creative muscles.
In 2001, after nearly 25 years in the cabinet-making industry, Lydia left her job to recapture her creative spirit. A friend introduced her to the concept of felting thrift store wool sweaters to make decorative throws. From that time forward, Lydia's experimental nature took over, and purses, pillows and scarves of this unique material seemed a natural progression.
Lydia's handbags are made almost entirely of recycled materials, beginning as wool garments which are "felted" or "fulled" with hot water and agitation in the washing machine. They are then cut apart, fashioned into her own designs without the use of patterns--- embellished with stitching, silk leather, beads, found objects, vintage buttons or even her own pottery pieces. Strongly inspired by nature, color and texture, she almost never plans her designs, preferring to work spontaneously..."her work just happens".
Making paper from plants in her garden and manipulating it with stitch and texture are another media Lydia utilizes. She also enjoys hand-building with clay, favoring texture and non-traditional glazing techniques. Her greatest joy comes while experimenting with new ways to combine fiber, clay, and found objects in mixed forms.
"I compare my work to a dragonfly metamorphosis. It begins as one thing, then is transformed into somthing completely different. It retains aspects of it's former being-- a certain energy that gives it history and meaning-- not unlike my own life since I have rediscovered my creative self."