KOEL Stories

Meet The KOEL Kids: Tamar Samplonius

KOEL Stories
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Sometimes all you have to do is follow your heart and passion, and it will lead you to the place you want to be. It was a huge leap of faith for macramé maker, Tamar Samplonius, to quit high school to do what is loves, but it was a decision that led her to her destiny. And here’s the twist… from leaving school to start a wood making study, Tamar later chanced upon a new craft which later became the craft she was completely in love with – macramé. Tamar now sells her larger-than-life knotted pieces on her Etsy store, TamarThings and dreams to create more XXXXXL designs in the future. Read on to get inspired by her story.

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1. Tell us more about your background and what led you to choosing macramé as a craft?
I've always loved creating things. As a kid, I was crafting with my mom as often as I could! This love has never stopped and when I went to high school, my favorite lessons were art classes, especially woodworking. These classes made me realize that what I loved most, was to work with my hands and create beautiful things. I decided to quit high school after 3 years and started a woodworking study. This was quite a big decision and everyone around me thought it was a shame because I was a quick learner in school. However, I wanted to follow my passion and thankfully my mom supported me in this decision I made!! During my woodmaking study, we got an assignment where we had to experiment with new materials and techniques. I chose macrame and haven't stopped since!

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2. What makes you a KOEL Kid?
That's a tough question! I think that every artist has its own unique style and I love that. I think what sets me apart is my love for natural materials as well my 'clean' designs. I always strive for perfection and I think that shows through my work.

3. Share with us the creative process behind each of your projects.
I've got 2 actually! I create lots of different designs, but you can roughly categorise them into two groups – organic and geometric designs.

When I start with an organic design, I'll just cut some rope and let the materials guide me. It's really an intuitive process and the result is always surprising!

When I create a geometric design, it's quite the opposite. I always start with a sketch and calculate the exact amount of rope I need for the project. After the rope is cut, I start knotting and hoping I cut the rope long enough haha, that part is always nerve wracking!

4. Pick one of your favourite designs and answer these quick questions.

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The inspiration behind this design is... The inspiration behind this design was actually an earlier piece I made! In the summer, I created something similar to this, the only difference was the size and the fact that this first design looked awful! It was so bad that I unknotted the whole thing, and a new idea was born. Since then I've been perfecting this design and when I was finally happy with how it looked, I was ready to create a BIG one for the large empty wall we had. And I did!

The dream store in which I would like to stock this design is... It's not really a specific store, but I would absolutely love it if a high end interior shop would stock this design!

Which celebrity house can you picture your design at... I can't really think of any celebrity, but I would be stoked if an artist I admire would want to give my art a place in their home (that would probably need to be quite a large space though!)

If this design made it big, I would... Be so grateful! And I would just keep doing what I love (and maybe work a little harder to keep up ;-)

If this design could talk, it would say... 'I need to loose some weight!'

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5. Great things take time, so how much has changed since you first started macramé and where do you see it in the next five years?
A lot has changed since I started macrame a little over a year ago. When I compare my first macrame wall hanging to what I create now, I have definitely came a long way. My work is so much cleaner!

In five years from now, I would love to have created more XXXXXL designs and maybe even installations! I love the challenges that these massive designs bring and the rewards when they're finished are even bigger ♡

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Photo credits: Tamar Samplonius