Craft artist and designer Natasha David has for almost a decade now been creating unique jawdropping pieces made mainly of natural materials which many would discard never dreaming that they could be used to create art.
The Scene first learnt of this craft artist a few months ago prior to a cultural programme when she was in demand for tibisiri skirts and Amerindian head dresses.
Natasha is a self-taught artist, who, whenever she visited her mother in Venezuela, would sit and keenly look on as the indigenous people there wove baskets.
Her first craft-making experience began with dolls. She always had a fascination for them and so she began sewing clothing for them from different cloths. She later diverted to other materials: coconut shells, foam, tibisiri, dried banana leaves, buck beads, toilet tissue, bamboo, twine, nylon thread, feathers, wood, seeds, shells and cassava starch.
With the cassava starch, she makes pendants of cartoon characters, which is a rarity in Guyana. While she does most of the work herself, her husband and son assist from time to time. To make the actual character she uses a mould but how she mixes the starch and what she does to preserve it will remain a family secret.
Apart from her cassava starch pendants, the other materials are used to make earrings, slippers, chains, dolls, bands, dresses, baskets, place mats, vases, hats, charms and dream catchers among other things.
Asked where she gets her inspiration for the unique pieces, she shared that she is sometimes inspired by family and friends. They are her biggest supporters as well, more so her husband and son.
“At first when I started doing craft it was hard but as I went out on expos, I met new customers. Now the business isn’t thriving but I get by. It has its peak times like during Mash, Emancipation, and September [Amerindian Heritage Month],” said Natasha. Her biggest customers at these times are the schools, churches and ministries. To offset having to work tirelessly during her peak periods, she works every day whether she has sales or not and whenever an expo comes around she can just pack up and display.
To date, Natasha has participated in almost 15 expos including GuyExpo, Women in Business and the Indigenous Expo.
Her favourite piece so far is a knitted wedding dress made intricately of buck beads. Natasha is also designing a gown for one of the Miss Amerindian Heritage Pageant contestants.
Natasha foresees herself expanding her business: David’s Creative Designs, within another five years to a decade’s time.
David’s Creative Designs is situated in ‘C’ Field, Sophia.