Sunday, February 10, 2013

Creative is as creative does

I started this quilt of teeny, tiny strips of cast off clothing and bargain bin fabrics, when I was nine and I worked on it for a YEAR.  I finished it the spring after I turned ten, and gave it, in all it's cacophonous colors, and king size, to my mother, as a birthday gift.  The blocks are machine sewn, but it is hand finished all around, in neat and tidy little stitches in orange thread.  I didn't notice that the sheet I bought for the back was a fitted sheet, so I had to cut out the elastic corners and inset a sort of matching fabric to make it square. It has been used pretty much constantly for the past 35 years and has held up beautifully.  The color scheme horrifies my adult sensibility, but I admire my tenacity.  Both of my children slept under it with me every night until they were five and sometimes after.  

this is a little edited out piece, I noticed of myself, in the big mirror in Don's studio, taken, as I was making photos of him for his blog.  I like the way my finger is bent.  I LOVE my IPhone for photos, I just do...

kale, blueberry, blackberry, raspberry salad with cilantro and cider vinaigrette, quinoa with sweet potato in the background 

Freyja and I on her birthday
I often get frustrated with all of the projects Freyja has going ALL the time, in every corner of our house. 
I went to pick her up today from my mother's house and I found my mother and Freyja seated in the middle of the livingroom with glitter coating most surfaces, and bits and bobs of stuff everywhere. 

My stepfather silently running the fancy vacuum cleaner over the expensive carpets, not a drop of annoyance to be found.  He is pleased when my mother is pleased and she is pleased when things are busy and chaotic.  when there is LIFE being LIVED in the house, amid the knick knacks and shiny things.

The house felt a little like you imagine Santa's workshop to feel.  My mother gleefully gluing felt on a Valentine box, that I would have not had the patience not, to correct or improve

Isn't it a beauty! Freyja did it all herself, I am just finishing up the bottom! 

My mother is not artistic or so she would say, so she has said my whole life, although she makes remarkable embroidery and has made both of my children amazing wall hangings featuring "the little prince" and "my father's dragon", that made from fabric, pieced together perfectly.

When I was a child we were poorest of poor, but I was provided with all the art supplies any child could wish for, when I was ten my grandparents and my mother bought me a real sewing machine, because I sat around hand sewing Barbie clothes and other projects compulsively, as if driven by some mad sweat shop owner.

I crocheted poorly but with gusto, which many years latter I would parlay into a mediocre knitting habit, before it was hip to knit in SE Portland, dressing my baby boy in ugly sweaters until he finally begged me to stop at age five. 

When I was seven I wanted to cook, and was allowed to dabble in the kitchen in a manner that I would never permit, either of my children or even my husband to do, to this day. I am frequently my mother's harshest critic, but when I think of the width and breath of experiment allow me, I know that the result is who I am today. It is highly unlikely that I will ever lighten up and allow my children the space and room for experimentation, art and craft that I had as a child, but I do recognize it and admire it from a distance.

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