By Theresa Goodwin
Imagine pulling over on the Liberta main road and running across the street, literally in socks, just to get a closer look at the handiwork of entrepreneur Valarie Redman who operates under a tent just a stone’s throw from the Liberta Clinic.
The kaleidoscope of colours from the decorative mats and other ornaments depicting the national flags of many different countries, is enough to dazzle one’s eyes and captivate your mind.
The mats which hang from either side of her comfy tent, are displayed alongside school uniforms of various sizes, small decorative chairs and a wide array of embroidery designs showcasing different themes.
When Observer media reporter sat down with her yesterday, Redman was busy cutting up strips of cloth as she prepared to fulfill an order for a customer.
The uniqueness of the mats is that they are made from colourful strips of cloth which are then tied in place individually to a crocus bag or other thin fabric, which are completed in different patterns and designs.
Redman said that a finished product usually takes between two to three months, depending on the size that is requested by the customer, and items are made by hand from start to finish.
She shared that she started doing craft as a young girl, however, she took it up fulltime over two years ago when she decided she wanted to become her own boss.
“I remembered when I was small, I would use the crocus bag and get old strips of cloth and cut it up to make mats. So, I decided that I would make some mats and see what happens. When I came, I got a sale and then another, so I decided to get a licence to sell in the spot that I now occupy.
“One sale led to another and before I knew it, I was making the mats in different colours and adding a new definition with the different flags; right now I am preparing some materials to fulfill some orders for Antigua’s independence,” Redman said.
As to her other creations, the entrepreneur said those pieces were inspired by her imagination and desire to see more things created from different materials.
“I love my work, I love what I do,” she said as she gleefully showed off her handiwork.
She hopes to one day expand her offerings by adding more interesting pieces.