Once again we are proud to feature our very own Eryka Sellers as the artist in the café. Eryka is a barista here at A&E. She is originally from Pennsylvania but moved to NH to attend graduate school at Southern NH University.
Eryka has been crocheting for six years and works with yarns to make wearable and decorative pieces – several of those pieces are currently adorning our café. She’s a knitter too, and she often knits with a practical purpose: to make scarves and hats to keep her warm during the long NH winters. She typically works with yarns in distinctive colors, and prefers patterns with texture.
This time she’s brought us some cozy wearables, some lightweight summer pieces, and of course, more of her delightful jellyfish and squid. Eryka started making these creatures for her friends in 2006 and to bolster her own stuffed animal collection in her college dorm room. The jellyfish and squid are Amigurumi, a Japanese form of crochet that literally translates to: to knit + stuffed animals. Amigurumi technique is based on spirals/created “in the round”, meaning that you just keep single-crocheting in a circle until the piece that you are working on is finished. This technique is especially useful for making creatures and dolls with the distinctive big head/small cylindrical body that is typical for Amigurumi. Amigurumi toys are often highly embellished and take a great deal of time to craft, therefore, they are not necessarily intended as children’s toys, but as decorations, prized for their cuteness. People frequently use them as an accessory and attach them to other accessories, like cell phones.
Amigurumi may have originated in Japan but they are now a very international phenomenon in cuteness. “Kawaii” is the Japanese word for cuteness and while there is great variety and whimsy in the types of creatures you can create, extreme cuteness is a must.
As you will see, Eryka’s creations require an impressive level of detail and artistry – which is precisely why we are confident in trusting her with your coffee! Because coffee is more than just coffee here at A&E…