We met Annie Legault at the 2015 Souk@Sat craft show in Montreal. We were instantly drawn to her comforting creations and were curious to know more about her passion for fiber and textile crafts. She invited us at her workshop located in the Old Port of Montreal to discuss it all and show us more of her lamps, rugs and dreamy Merinos knitted blankets.
Interview and images ©Mélissa Giguère.
Hi Annie! So how did handcrafting become an important part of your life ?
When I was 35, I decided to to complete a BA in Visual Arts that I had started in my early twenties. To complete this BA, I joined the Concordia University Studio Arts program. This program offered the opportunity of taking classes in different departments. I totally fell in love with the classes in the Fibers and Textiles department!
For my final graduation project, I made a conceptual installation composed of lamps and rugs. When the gallery exhibition ended, the owner of a boutique located in the Old Port of Montreal suggested that I install my art project in the store window. From this window, the installation got noticed by both Maison et Demeure magazine and Radio-Canada, which asked me to do an interview. The following 3 years my work also was accepted by the beautiful Montreal’s craft show Souk@Sat, which gave me a lot of visibility. And that is how it all started!
I named my collection Amulette [Amulet] because when one touches and looks at my creations, one feels a sense of comfort.
Your technique seems to be inspired by traditional crafting. How did you choose and/or develop your technique?
In order to find the perfect technique to give me what I was aiming for, I did a lot of exploration and research, both interviewing people and reading technical guides. After trying different techniques, it was finally a family member who showed me a technique that was ideal for my creations.
What influences your choices of fibers?
I named my collection Amulette [Amulet] because when one touches and looks at my creations, one feels a sense of comfort. Wool, as well as natural and organic fibers, are the ideal materials to convey this impression. I also choose my materials depending on other properties such as color and rigidity.
For the rugs it was essential that the material was merino wool. I fell in love with this wool when I touched it for the first time. It is a very delicate wool because it is not spun. That said, the hand-weaving technique that I use helps secure the fibers to make it very solid and strong.