Portland artist Debbie Davis of Knotty Twine is known for making intricate macrame wall hangings that cascade down from gnarled pieces of driftwood she collects on the Oregon Coast. The wall hangings featured simple knotted designs done in cotton cord, sometimes embellished with beads or dip dyed on the tips with ink and paint. Debbie first made macrame as a 12-year-old in the late seventies. “My mom was really into macrame and our house was filled with it. She made all sorts of things, including this shelf I wish was still around. It hung from the ceiling in two tiers and had round glass shelves.”
Debbie has turned her childhood craft into a modern outlet for her creativity. “Last year, my daughter showed me a macrame piece she loved on Etsy and I thought, “I can make that!”, explains Debbie. “My mom had recently passed and working on the macrame kept my hands busy, my mind busy.”
She began posting pieces she made on Instagram and requests to buy her work started coming in. “That’s how it all got started,” she says. “All the designs come out of my head. It’s interesting when you start a piece, I don’t always know what I’m going to do. It just kind of becomes its own creation.”
Many of her designs use classic white cord, but Debbie has also been experimenting with saffron yellow and denim colored cord she imports from Europe. “I really like how copper beads look with the denim cord,” says Debbie, who likes to knot designs in her free time while listening to podcasts like S-Town, Cults, and True Crime Garage.”
Perch is hosting a pop up of Debbie’s work during the September 6th First Thursday Art Walk in the Pearl. Stop by to chat with Debbie about her work, shop wall hangings and have a glass of wine. The opening will be from 4:00 to 7:00 and the hangings will be in the shop through the end of September.