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Temari

Toys traditionally given to children on New Year’s Eve, temari balls often contain a wish around which many layers of yarn and thread are wrapped, interwoven and embroidered, to protect the secret wish from escaping. Due to the geometric nature of the patterns, it is critical that the yarn and thread base be perfectly spherical. One can design infinite patterns and variations by dividing the sphere into hemispheres and subsequent eighths, sixteenths, and so on—a painstaking process that involves marking the poles and key points of equidistance with colored pins. Imperfections in the sphere can be difficult to discover until well into the painstaking measurement process, but even a small imperfection in the base is magnified many times in the geometry on its surface. I learned these things from my aunt, who also told me a secret about humility: while geometric precision is prized, it is important to misplace one stitch on the surface of each ball. I made these temari in her memory. Gretchen M. Krueger


Temari | Gretchen