Fiber Arts

Gathering Inspiration

January 30, 2014

RocksBaby-GirlGranny-SquaresNeedles-and-HooksInspirationDrawingColorsBaby-FeetEmbroidery-3EmbroideryDSC_7239-copyEmbroidery-Sketching

The past year is not one that I would say has seen a lot of creative inspiration for me. It has been an incredible year, a magical year, but not a creative year. Perhaps it was the pregnancy and postpartum brain, perhaps it was the adjustment to a big homeschooling family, perhaps I was just really really tired. Whatever it was, I have not done much more than knitting, and even that was simple baby knits.

As the craziness of the holidays subsided and the new year turned, my oldest and I spent a few days looking through books, videos, and patterns trying to decide how to get 2014 off on the right foot. I think that somehow we both knew that we needed new bits of creative goodness to get our mojo back. We made lists, day dreamed, and discussed the ins and outs of new projects and techniques. We decided that while we already do a creative project almost everyday, picking something specific to work on with each new month was how we wanted to plan our time. Screen painting, crochet, woodworking, throwing on the wheel, all of these things are on the list for this coming year.

In December (or maybe November, the days have blurred together) I discovered Creativebug. Oh my, this is a crafters dream. Classes from some of the best teachers and artists that you can take whenever you want, even in your jammies. In my current state of mommyhood, this was like finding the holy grail. I immediately bookmarked a few that I wanted to try, and I signed up for their monthly membership. One night, as the baby was asleep on my chest, with the toddler tucked safely in the crook of my arm, I decided to watch a class on embroidery. I knew the basics, and occasionally I would take needle to thread, but I wanted to really understand what it meant to embroider something special.

As I sat there and listened to Rebecca explain so many different stitches, it all came flooding back.

Any crafter will tell you their story of when the bug bit them. When they began traveling with their supplies, doing handwork in public, or started designing projects in their sleep. When the idea of a vacation was learning Irish Cabling by a lake, drawing with a best friend at the kitchen table, or taking needle to thread in a cabin along the Rockies. There are ups and downs, lulls and a few hiatus here and there, but we always return to the work of the hands at some point.

This time around it took that bug a while to come back and get me, but I am ever so grateful it did. After a lull long enough to put me soundly to sleep, my imagination was suddenly aglow, and my hands yearning for something new and fun. The past few months have been spent with cloth and thread in hand, with books galore on such subjects as crewel work, wood burning, and sketching. There are a few quilt tops that have been sitting for years, begging me to finally learn to finish them. There are certainly skeins and skeins of yarn that are telling me that now is the time to get over my fear of Fair Isle, and some little girl clothes that promise to be adorable, if only I will sit and learn to smock a dress or two.

Then there is this space, that promises me that if I will once again take pen to paper (or key to screen), I can find that voice that I have missed for so many months.

I dream now in color. In fabric and yarn, in thread and paint. I dream of words, of texture, and of creating the beautiful world I know is right at my fingertips.

                                      ::::::::::::

The sampler I embroidered above is designed by Rebecca of Dropcloth. Her work is a lot of fun, and so easy to get started with. My oldest loved it so much he asked for one of his own. The gorgeous purple silk blanket was a gift to Emma Jeanne from Stephinie of Gypsy Forest. If I can ever sew half as good as Stephinie does, I will call my life complete :). 

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Yarn Along :: Dreaming

March 27, 2013

::Dream::

a series of thoughts, images, or emotions occurring during sleep — compare rem sleep

 an experience of waking life having the characteristics of a dream: as a visionary creation of the imagination : daydream

 a state of mind marked by abstraction or release from reality : reverie

 an object seen in a dreamlike state : vision

 something notable for its beauty, excellence, or enjoyable quality 

 a strongly desired goal or purpose 

 something that fully satisfies a wish : ideal 

Joining Ginny for Yarn Along today.

Dreaming is one of the most beautiful of the human experiences. Both while awake, and asleep, dreaming can take us to places that only our hearts knew we wanted to travel.

A few days back Bernadette and I were chatting online and she asked me “What are you going to do with all of that knitting if this baby turns out to be a boy?”

It was a logical question, since over the weekend I had posted to Instagram a photo of some rather lovely lavender yarn that was quickly making it’s way into becoming a baby sweater. Or should I say, blouse. You see, I have been doing a bit of knitting, and some of it has a distinct feminine vibe. Slowly, a few sweaters have materialized with ruffles, lace, and detail that is beautifully suited to a girl. So, you ask, do I know what we are having?

Not even a little bit.

I am dreaming, and my oh my, it is a beautiful dream at that.

I would love to have a daughter, it is something that graces my thoughts at least a few times a day, and certainly something that I have wished on just a few stars over. Friends have wondered if I am setting myself up for disappointment, but I gotta tell you, I would rather dream a big dream and take my chances on it coming true than to never express what is really on my heart.

Does that mean that I would be disappointed with a son, heck no! My three boys have to be three of the most loving towards their mama, and they have made my life so darn good, I have no right to even think of a fourth. No matter how much I love them, I still choose to dream that we might know what it is like to raise a daughter, that they might know what it is like to love a sister, and that I might get a little bit more feminity on my side at the dinner table.

So what will I do if it is a boy? First, thank the universe that he is healthy and happy. Second, wrap up those sweaters and become the best gift giver of baby clothes that my friends have ever known. It isn’t scary, it isn’t risky, it is a dream. I fully intend to ride that dream all the way into the labor and delivery room, and embrace and love whatever we are given.

Dream big my friends. As far as we know, this is the one and only life we get, and we should be willing to embrace the dream, even if we know full well that it only has a 50/50 chance of coming true. I pray every day that my kids take some big risks in their lives, that they wish and hope and dream for what they want, and that they embrace what they are blessed with.

And hey, can you imagine the love that a mother of four boys will get? My life is a dream already.

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