I was talking with a friend recently, who is into restoration. We were discussing among other things how we view restoration. I have always had a love for what is now termed “fiber arts.” It is the manipulation of fibers... crochet, knitting, quilting, sewing clothes, embroidery, etc. Designers have taken those skills and combined them with an artistic flair and something new is created.
Something to Ponder
Crafted with Love
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While many people collect china and glassware, perhaps silver trays or even salt and pepper shakers, those items lack the human touch that the fiber arts hold. Those items were created by machines, by a process, by companies rather than individuals. They do not evoke artistry. While many of them have lasted through moves and generations, they are not personal.
Even if we skip out of the fiber arts category and go to other crafts such as pottery and jewelry making. It is when an individual designer creates something that comes from his or her mind and brings it to life that we have a truly wonderful item. Not too long ago, I had some rings that I took to a jeweler hoping he could use the stones and design something like no one else had. He did, and I now have a piece of jewelry that is unique and reflects both the designer and me. I have a friend who is a potter. Each piece of pottery that he throws on the wheel and creates is like no other. There will be bits of his DNA in each and every piece, it is so personal.
I think of the village ironsmith and how each horseshoe was individually created, how he would get a request for an item that was needed in a household and he would configure that piece so that it would work for that family or individual. It was truly a gift and a skill like no other.
I have another friend who repurposes old furniture. She restores what she finds when she can. If she can’t restore the piece, she may use the doors or knobs on another restoration. She may take the legs of an old table and use them individually and use the top in
another way. She has a gift when it comes to seeing what these old broken pieces of furniture have to offer someone by giving them a new
Quilting held the same fascination for me. You can have a view of what you want to create then using an eye for color and textures, mix and match creating something that no one else can create. A friend and I got into our fabric stashes one year and began pulling out material. We were going to both make a quilt and share fabrics for a “friendship” quilt. While we both used all of the fabrics and the same patterns, it was amazing how differently our quilts turned out. Each had the imprint of the person who created it.
These are but a few reasons I love the fiber arts and hand crafted items. I think, as I look at a quilt that was created by my grandmother, great grandmother, and great great aunt about the hours they spent individually cutting pieces of fabric, sewing them by hand, and quilting them. I wonder what conversations they had during the time they worked together. Did my mother sit under the quilt when it was on the frame being quilted? Did they share tears as well as laughter? I will never know, but I know that the quilts that were created from scrap material are as warm and as cozy as a person could ever want. They were crafted with love.
As my friend and I finished our conversation, I complimented him on his skill in restoration. He promptly informed me that he was not certain whether it was a skill or an illness. Knowing how I felt at times when I was quilting, I had to agree with him.
Something To Ponder