Interview a Signe Riisom

Signe Riisom is a “knit artist” living in Odense, Denmark. She is an expert knitter and she handknits her art.

She was born in Aalborg in the northern part of Denmark, but moved to Funen where she now lives with her husband and three children.

She studied civil engineering and works with concrete constructions on building sites in Denmark. In her spare time she knits her portraits and hosts lectures in freeform knitting.

Her first exhibitions were in Copenhagen in a yarn store and café where she ended up selling 4 out of 6 portraits. 

What I love about her work is the way she manipulates de knitting. She can knit circles and  squares, moustaches, hair, flowers and it seems that she is painting.1) What inspires you? Do you think that our emotions are a way of inspiration? How? 

I’m inspired by flowers growing wild in the nature, the rough and windy West Coast in Denmark and funny candy like the Danish liquoirice pipe. Often I have a feeling or mood that I want to knit, so I pick the colours that I think will bring the mood out in the portrait. And then I just start knitting what comes to mind. I never makes sketches of my work beforehand, and I sometimes don’t knit on a piece for several days, because I’m uncertain of a colour or element.2) What kind of needles do you use for your work? What kind of yarn do you use for your work?

I use wooden KnitPro needles size 3mm. I really like their short squared needles – they are perfect for short rows. My favourite yarn is 2ply fingering weight from Jamiesson of Shetland. It comes in so many beautiful colours and when washed the structure is neat and you can still see every stitch.3) Which are your secret places to buy stuff for your art? Do you buy needles and yarn in internet?

I buy a lot of my yarn at yarn festivals where I can see and feel the yarn. But I also buy online from shops, who’s yarn I already know, especially if they get new colours. I have used the same needles since I started knitting freeform in 2017. Luckily none of them has broken!4) Can you give an advice to someone that is starting to do “knitting art”?

Freeform is all about NOT following specific patterns, so just let your creativity free and knit! The basic techniques are short rows and in-/decrease. You can combine different yarn and structures to create your own freeform style.5) How many projects do you have at the same time, and how many projects do you have still unfinished?

When it comes to my knt art I only knit on one portraitat the time. Otherwise I would never finish the backgrounds! But I always have a sweater that I’m knitting on too, for car knitting etc. Well, actually I have 3 ongoing sweaters…6) Please, give us an advice that may inspire us to start kntting art. 

On my freeform courses everybody always start by knitting a leaf or a flower, and then after an hour they are brave enough to try knitting their own shapes without reading a pattern first. You can knit everything, so if you like flowers like me, find your favourite and try to knit it.

Thank you Signe

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