The process behind my creations
Inception meaning new beginning - a dawn of an idea - my name Avji meaning Dawn in Greek, inspired me to venture into a new journey.
A costume creative in the entertainments industry, along with all other cultural and art professionals, I found my self without a purpose in the beginning of the covid 19 pandemic.
I discovered that creativity does not have an off button and found myself in need of a creative project.
Working with my hands, producing something functional and yet theatrical, unconventional and personal - I am trying to recreate a show of a different kind - for audiences in their homes and self created environments.
All my products are named Dawn in different languages.
I have always enjoyed making garments, hats and masks, as well as trying to introduce new technological and industrial materials to traditional and historical designs.
I wanted to use a rigid and hostile medium and turn it into a flowing and intricate product/finish, that reminds of barbed wire and lace at the same time.
Having worked in costume production - where a rigid base is hidden by luxurious fabrics and frills, was the foundation of my initial inspiration.
A crinoline under an 18th century dress is rigid, has a bounce and movement and creates a shape. The intricacy of crocheting with copper wire, gave me both the crinoline and the draped form of a fabric. The finishing of the crocheted copper wire catches both the natural and artificial lights, creating a jewel like effect.
The Magic Flute (2010)
Designed by: Bruno Schwengl
Assistant Designer & Costume Supervisor: Avji Delega
Greek National Opera
I work without a pattern or a sketch. I look at the wire and decide which stitch I would like to use.
I find that once I start, the shape gets dictated to me by the wire, the crochet hook and my imagination.
I use bare copper, silver plated and coloured enamelled copper wires, which enable me to sculpt my shapes with a crochet hook.
The copper wires are non-tarnish with a brilliant shine and with a very vivid metallic colour finish.
The shades catch the sunlight like a jewel and create patterns on ceilings and walls at night when the lights are on (depending on the positioning of the shade).
I have used up to a kilometer of wire for a shade and it can take me up to 35 hours of crocheting (Yoake design)
The wire is soft – but strong, and the shape of the shades are dictated from the crocheted pattern, which I create.
The shades can be heavy due to the amount of wire used and I take that into account when creating. That of course does not mean that I will not produce larger pieces – just that more care will be needed when hanging (like a chandelier)
My upcycled pieces use anything from second hand lampbases (retouched or recreated), to various objects – depending of what I find that inspires me – including the more industrial washing machine drum light.
I constantly experiment and find different patterns or techniques to create original pieces for people who will appreciate something unique and handmade.
My creations are unconventional, bespoke and work in any environment that is willing to make a statement or enhance an ambience .
I aim to offer a bit of my experience for the importance of lighting in a space (as on a stage!) and combine the artisan and creativity of all the hundreds of theatre support people with whom I have worked, treasured and enjoyed all my working life.
(and… combine the treasured memory of the amazing theatre support people with their ingenuity and creativity, which I have been privileged to enjoy throughout my working life