In, and out, the needle goes
along the folded seam . . .
while your heart is following
some lost and lonely dream.
In between the stitches,
you can go a long, long way . . .
when you're sitting sewing
at the quiet end of day . . .
I often sit in the evenings while we are watching the television plying my needle into some hand sewing, embroidery or the like. It is a mindless kind of thing that I can enjoy without having to apply my full attention to either it or the television. I just sit, lost in my own little world and my fingers work the needle in and out and the television weaves words and sound around my head . . .
One of my favourite semesters at school in Home Economics was the semester in which we learnt the home arts . . . which included the art of mending, embroidery, smocking, darning and such. There is a special comfort to be had in performing these simple duties. You can create something beautiful for the home, and for the heart. It is an act of love to darn a pair of socks . . . or hem up a pair of trousers. Oh, I know that things like hemming can be done on a sewing machine, and done much faster . . . but I love to sit with my needle and thread in hand and do it that way. Quite simply put, I enjoy it.
O the things that you remember
as you draw the thread!
Odds and ends of memory
come back into your head.
Names and faces,
times and places.
Round the world you go.
Many miles you travel as
you watch the stitches grow . . .
I've been working on making sewing kits in decorative tins lately. Making small pin-cushions for in them, and needle books, scissor holders . . . I've carefully gathered materials for in them. Pins, safety pins, buttons, scissors . . . I was in town the other day and I saw the cutest little tins for holding the pins and safety pins, and I have drawn and coloured small cards to hold threads and buttons. I've made dolly pin holders for ribbons. I think they will be quite nice when they are done. Perhaps someone will be inspired by them to pick up a needle and thread and perform some of these gentler arts . . . perhaps they will make the perfect gift for a budding seamstress. We will see. In any case I am having fun putting them together . . . I have two tins, one is a saucy Scottie dog (a shortbread tin) and the other a pretty forest tin, decorated with painted animals and such, in a forest . . . squirrels and bunnies and . . . birds. I may keep that one for myself, or I may not. I have not decided.
My grandmother had a pedal sewing machine . . . one in which you had to move the needle by pressing your foot up and down on the pedal underneath. It is somewhat difficult to describe, but I think you probably know what I mean. My mother had/has a beautiful Singer Sewing Machine. I sewed many an outfit for myself on it. I can still remember the smell . . . sewing machine oil and leather . . . from the cover I suppose. It has plastic bobbins that you add for each different stitch . . . it did embroidery. I am not sure if it still works or not. It has not been used in years. My mother always liked working with her hands as well . . . embroidery, knitting etc. I did her a sewing kit in Plastic canvas many, many years ago. She still has it in her cupboard in the hall outside her bedroom door. Many stitches of love went into that. My mother has lovely things that both my sister and I have made for her through the years. Doilies and pillows and wall hangings, quilts, etc. We love our mother and always have done. I think that the fact we have made her all these things by hand are a testament to that great love we have for her . . . and an act of gratitude for all of the love that she gave us when we were growing up and still . . . and all that we learnt from her.
See . . . there is so much love
which springs from
a hand that plies
a needle and
thread . . .
One of the projects we did at school was a smocked pillow top using large squared gingham. I remember mine was blue. I wonder what happened to it . . . long since gone. I dug out a bunch of my counted cross stitch the other day and I am going to launder them and press them up and then gift them to my children I think . . . I would rather see them enjoy them while I am still alive to see it, than after I am long gone . . .
We had taken them to the dry cleaners first to see if they might be cleaned, but the dry cleaner said she was worried that she might ruin them. The stitching was so well done she said . . . I was flattered. There is a huge part of me that wants my children to want them, and another part of me that is afraid that they will get lost or abused, or that they might not want them . . .
But then again should I die
and these pieces still
be here with me
they will go
Better to at least think that they are with someone I love and that they mean something to them, even if they don't . . . I have so many things and I need to begin giving them to my children now, these small treasures. They are doing me no good and they are in all likelihood my only legacy to them. I have no riches to send down . . . or to leave. Just these things and my art and writings . . .
Speaking of writings, I have three chapters done. Only six to go. It's all very exciting and I am really enjoying it! I best let you go . . . the day is getting on and I must be about my work. I do so enjoy your visits and this time we spend together each morning. Thanks for listening/reading. It means the world to me.
A thought to carry with you . . .
.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~＼。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ ｜ 田田 ｜門 ★
*.˛.° ˛°. .
˛*If you wouldn't say it to a friend . . .
don't say it to yourself.
~Jayne Travis •。★★ 。* 。
In the English Kitchen today . . . Broccoli and Cheddar Chowder . . . so good.
Have a fab Wednesday. (Can't believe it is Wednesday already!) Don't forget!
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And I do too!