At TUMO Studios, he led an atelier on modern approaches to crochet and knitting for the creation of wearable objects — brooches, ear and neck pieces — inspired by local myths and legends. Students looked to ancient Armenian mythology, like Tsovinar goddess of water and Vahagn god of fire, to inspire their choices of color, texture, shape, and material.
Through the atelier, Elie sought to leave students with two main takeaways — the importance of learning the logic of needlework and creating things that aren’t just commodities to be bought or consumed, but items that elicit feeling and provide people with experiences.
“When I teach crochet and knitting, I don’t teach technique, I teach logic. The important thing is not to tell them how to create an angle in crochet, but to tell them what makes these instructions create a 90-degree angle and these instructions create a 60-degree angle,” explained Elie. “Once you understand the logic, you can create any type of angle.”