Fiber art is a form of art that creates whole objects (whether functional or ornamental) with fibrous material (whether natural or artificial). If you are familiar with crochet, you would agree that this definition of fiber art describes it so well. But is crochet actually considered fiber art?
Is crochet considered fiber art?
Crochet is considered fiber art for obvious reasons. It is a process that produces whole objects, which can be functional (such as socks) or ornamental (such as crochet figures). Besides, the primary raw material in creating crochet is yarn, a fibrous material.
Of course, crochet is not the only fiber art out there; crafts like quilting and knitting are also considered fiber art. To shed more light on what qualifies as fiber art, we discuss the prompt of this article extensively below.
What is Fiber Art?
Crochet is considered fiber art – a thorough description of fiber art explains why.
Fiber art is a conglomeration of two words – fiber and art. If we define both terms separately, the inclusion of crochet as fiber art becomes obvious.
Art is the expression of human imagination and creativity by producing works, which are primarily appreciated for their splendor. Of course, beyond revering them for their excellence, works of art can also be functional.
In its simplest, fiber is a thin strand of material that you can combine into fabric. It can be natural or artificial and of various sizes and colors.
Going by the definitions of fiber and art, you can say fiber art is the expression of human imagination and creativity by turning fiber into fabric.
If you think about what you do when you crochet or what you see people do when they crochet, you will realize that crochet fits the definition above. Crocheting involves turning fiber – yarn – into different objects (fabrics).
Of course, these objects are what you see in your mind before you set out to crochet – your imagination and creativity. So, crochet being fiber art checks out.
Methods of Making Fiber Art
Earlier, we hinted that fiber art comes from turning fiber into fabric. Well, there are many ways to create fabric from fiber, and below, we talk about 4 of them:
Obviously, at this point, you already realize that crochet is fiber art. So, it isn’t surprising that crochet is a method of making fiber art.
Crochet creates fabric by interlocking a series of fiber loops (stitches) using a crochet hook. The loops come from a single strand of fiber (yarn), and you can even combine various yarn types to achieve something creative and unique.
Crochet can create various types of stitches. However, it typically starts with a chain stitch.
Unlike crochet, weaving creates fabric by crossing two perpendicular strands of fiber. The vertical strands are the warp, while the horizontal ones are the weft.
Weaving is almost always done on a device called a loom. There are many types of looms, and each one is best used for specific purposes.
In its simplest, weaving creates plain weaves – a pattern that has the weft going over and under the warps successively.
Of course, weaving can be more advanced, depending on your imagination, yarn type, and the loom you work with.
Felting is pretty different from most other methods of making fiber art. It does not create fabric by looping or interlocking fibers. Instead, it makes fiber through a dry or wet method.
Dry felting involves poking fibers with barbed needles to compress them into matted fabrics while wet felting involves agitating wet fibers until they compact into a mat.
In wet felting, you soak the fibers in soapy water first. Then you rub them vigorously until you get the matted fabric you want.
Like crochet, knitting turns fiber into fabric by interlocking a series of loops from a single fiber strand. However, unlike crochet, knitting involves two needles, not a crochet hook.
Knitting can create various types of stitches. But two are more commonplace than the others. The two common knitting stitches are pearl stitch and knit stitch.
The two needles used in knitting can work with a machine, a cord, or a loom. However, the loom used in knitting is different from a weaving loom.
Knitting looms are less stressful than weaving looms. They are also more versatile than weaving looms. Remember we said that there are different types of weaving looms, and each one is best used for a specific purpose?
You can also knit with your fingers or arms in the absence of a machine, loom, or cord.
Fiber art is basically the process of expressing what you imagine by making fiber into fabric.
Since crochet involves interlocking yarn fiber to make fabrics (crochet projects) in patterns you imagine, crochet is fiber art.