Cross-stitch gets update

DANIELLE STREET
Last updated 05:00 29/01/2014
Margaret Lewis

GRANNY GRAFFITI: Designer Margaret Lewis has made a start cross-stitching a panel designed by artist Dager to take to Splore next month.

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It's cross-stitch, but not like grandma used to make.

Designer Margaret Lewis is curating an project called the Street Loves Nana, which will see a union between street art and handicraft.

To bring her vision to life Ms Lewis asked several well-known street artists to create works as an homage to their grandmothers.

"I thought they would think it's a dumb idea, but they didn't. They loved it," she says.

"It's another way for them to explore doing their art and it's opened a whole lot of storytelling as well."

The designs have been spraypainted on to massive mesh screens that are set to be stitched with yarn by punters at next month's Splore music festival.

"I'm really passionate about handicraft and I want to share it with a new generation, by connecting them with an older generation," Ms Lewis says.

The giant screens will be located in the festival's themed camping zone, which will be a real retro experience.

The Camp Mother zone will have old-fashioned furniture, board games, playing cards and magazines. Iced tea will also be served.

Festival-goers can relax in the tent while doing a little cross-stitching, Mrs Lewis says.

It is the first creative project for the designer since a fire at her Westmere home last year.

"As a result of that I had to move out and I lost a lot of stuff," she says.

"It was a really hard time because I lost my ability to create."

However, she managed to salvage a great stash of wool that will be used for the project.

There will be eight screens heading to Splore. Ms Lewis used crowd-sourcing website Kickstart to get the $2600 to transport them to Tapapakanga Park for the festival.

At the end of the event Ms Lewis hopes to exhibit the finished works and capture the imaginations of an even wider audience.

"Street artists often have a really bad rep. Some people see them as vandals who wear hoodies but they aren't like that at all," she says.

"So it's one way of breaking down barriers."

Participating street artists include Ghstie, Dager and Benjamin Work.

Splore is on February 14 to 16 at Tapapakanga Regional Park.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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