Ivana Domanjova Czech Lace Maker and Designer
Ivana is one of the leading persons in the Czech modern bobbin lace field.
For many years bobbin lace is her life, she is publishing Lace magazine Paličkování. She teaches classes all over the Czech republic. Her works are exhibited in many international bobbin lace symposiums and exhibitions; also, her works have been published in many magazines. Ivana is very enthusiastic, and her sense of humor and excitement about bobbin lace is contagious.
I could not resist asking her for an interview.
Are you comfortable? Do you have time and relax, maybe sip a cup of coffee?
Yes? This is the best time to let your mind to flow with Ivana's story.
I discovered bobbin lace by accident. My mother had a beautiful piece of lace in her closed. One day I took it out and could leave it. This was such a nice piece, almost treasure to me. Nobody in my family has been interested in lace making. So nobody could tell me how it was done.
But my mind was preoccupied with this lace, and I had to think about it. I was dying to know how it was done. My neighbor knew more about textile art and textile techniques, and she smiled and said, well this is bobbin lace technique. I never heard about bobbin lace before. But it sounded so nice so inviting.
And this was the day when my life changed, and bobbin lace became part of my life. Started to circulate in my veins.
My mother signed me up for a bobbin lace class. I could not sleep before the first class. I was excited. That time I did not have a clue how important role will bobbin lace play in my adult life.
My first teacher was Ivana Prošková, my angel, who taught me a lot. She did not inspire only me, but many other lace makers and lace artists.
During my high school study, I attended a school which specialized in art design. After graduation, I started to work at the lace factory. This was a very important experience for me; I learned bobbin lace craft on a very high level. I became a professional lacemaker. But to just work on somebody else's designs was not satisfying for me. My soul has a different dimension; I need to create. When I create, my soul is singing my song.
I started to work on my own designs.
And I became a designer for the lace factory. I love a challenge, with every other project I face something new. This is life; every project will push me farther and do not just discover my limits of lace but also something new about my self. Bobbin lace thought me to be patient. It does not matter if I work on lace which is for a dress, if I work on a hat, on jewelry or if I am creating lace picture. I work patiently for hours and hours. It is tedious work, and when it is done, when I take it down from the pillow I can feel how lace is starting to live its own life, it starts to breathe, and I feel joy inside me.
While creating lace, I love to use different unconventional materials. Sometimes it is a big challenge, but it is worth to try. Each material will bring different effect and also colors are very important to me. I love to play with colors.
For many years I am teaching bobbin lace. We have summer courses, usually in a very nice area in the mountains. Where we are surrounded by serenity, and it is best to time to create.
Usually, I would get a question about who is attending my classes, your summer retreats? This is a very hard question because it can not be categorized. Doctors, teachers, bankers, but also bus drivers would attend my classes. Young and old ones, students, and retired people. But one thing all of them have in common, they love beauty, and they have a kind personality and beautiful smiles.
When young people are coming to learn bobbin lace, I am very happy, because I know that this technique will live and develop to the new form, will be part of our culture.
Did you like Ivana's story? Yes, she is a very interesting person, and her energy radiates from her work. It does not matter what she is doing; her designs are full of joy, which spreads around. I love especially her hats. I did not see anybody to design hats her way. They are very modern but still brings a feeling of something special, feeling of nobles, and at the same time they are little bit coquettish