MiVT: Yarndance

Published: Aug. 2, 2021 at 12:52 PM EDT
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WESTFORD, Vt. (WCAX) - A love for fiber arts has long lived in India Tresselt’s heart.

“I was working at Kaleidoscope Yarns in Essex Junction. It’s gone now but some people will remember Kaleidoscope and I started writing some knitting patterns and I called them Yarndance,” she recounted.

Artistic genes run in the family.

After working as a freelance editor for years, she realized she was ready for a change. It came following the passing of her creative and gifted mother in 2012.

“She had gone to art school and she was very talented but she never pursued her art,” Tresselt said. “I just kind of felt like I needed to make a change and I needed to honor her by committing more to my art.”

So she did, gradually building her online presence into a brand known today as Yarndance.

“My husband plays the banjo and the guitar and I play the fiddle and barn dance, you change the ‘B’ to a ‘Y’ and you get ‘Yarndance’ which is kind of what I like to do with yarn is to have fun with it,” she said.

It began with yarn and knitting, and while those are still part of Tresselt’s business, she now heavily focuses on an ancient Japanese craft -- Tamari.

“They were just fascinating to me, the intricacy of the designs,” said Tresselt, who learned how to make them from a book. “A lot of the designs are based on floral or star or mandala forms and that actually is a theme that runs through a lot of my work.”

Tamari balls were used as toys in Japan, wrapped in thread from old, unused clothes. Tresselt says while they are likely still used as toys, hers are a bit more decorative.

“Over time it evolved in a more decorative way so that in some of the imperial courts, the ladies would compete to see who could make the most elaborate and most beautiful Tamari,” she explained. “I like the peacefulness of it, I mean I live out here in the country and I listen to audiobooks and I sit and I work.”

It’s a take on a Japanese tradition that’s just as beautiful as the place it’s made.

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