Conversations with the Makers

An array of questions to fibre/textile artists and their answers.

header photo

Conversation with Marjolein Dallinga: CANADA

Marjolein Dallinga was born in the Netherlands where she studied Fine Arts. She moved to Montréal, Canada, in 1989 to pursue her art career through making art books and jewelry. While raising a family, her creativity led her to toy making and teaching art classes. This led her to discover felting, and she now works in this medium.
The world-renowned CIRQUE DU SOLEIL became interested in Marjolein’s work, and for the last five years she has experimented with felt for their costume design while also creating final products for their shows. 
Marjolein has her own company,, and works from her studio with sewing and dyeing rooms. She has taught felting for thirteen years in North America, Europe, and Australia and New Zealand. Last year she won two awards for her costumes made for the WOW (world of wearable art) in New Zealand.

CONVERSATION WITH THE MAKERS Did you always envision a life as an artist?

MARJOLEIN DALLINGER Yes,it is something I have lots of love and energy for 



CWTM What was your first experience with making art?

MD When I decorate the wheels of my bicycle as a very young girl 


CWTM Do you have a dedicated studio?

MD Yes ,very fortunate


CWTM Can you describe a typical day?

MD I start around 8 in the morning work until 4 ,short lunch Mostly after dinner I work some more,maybe an hour or two. This almost everyday if I am not traveling to teach .


CWTM Would you consider your art making to be more about the process than the outcome?

MD It is more abut the process .I am almost indifferent about the result. It is the journey what interest me.

An art piece has to transform me Otherwise it is not important


CWTM Do you agree that a small element of uncertainty about the finished look is what makes the process of creating so enticing?

MD Yes even big uncertainties.


CWTM Any indispensable tools or equipment?

MD Scissors, camera, iPad


CWTM Do your pieces start with a planned course of action or are they more spontaneous?

MD The start is always very intuitive


CWTM How do you know when to “stop” – when do you consider a piece actually finished?

MD Well,I just know,but some pieces I can't finish ,they are bridges,or stepping stones


CWTM Your greatest source of inspiration is….

MD Friction


CWTM Favourite quote?

MD Follow your bliss .


CWTM When do you do your best creative thinking?

MD When I am in love with something or somebody


CWTM What do you enjoy most about your work?

 MD The love for it


CWTM Best advice you’ve ever received?

MD Just do it

CWTM Worst advice you’ve ever received?

MD Don't remember


CWTM Best part of your day?

MD Twilight ,morning and evening


CWTM Who would be 6 people that you would invite to dinner?

MD People I love


CWTM What inspires your creativity?

MD I don't know I just have to strong drive to do so .


CWTM What are you excited about right now in the world of textile art?

MD The sharing and buzzing ,and that it is taken more seriously


CWTM You’d be lost without…

MD My art and iPad


CWTM What would you do with a few extra hours each day? 

 MD Walking more and meeting friends and lovers


CWTM Your favourite luxury

MD Taking pictures with my camera


CWTM Has the advancement of computers and technology impacted your work?

MD Yes ,I made my work be known by many more people


CWTM What do you enjoy most about your work?

MD That it is the best  thing to do in a day. Every day


CWTM Is it important for us to be recognized by the art world and if so, how can we help affect that change?

MD Get it out ,share, show when you are ready to do so.


CWTM What is next for you?

MD Art show in Chicago ,November 2013