She had an eye for the discarded, the lost and unwanted...
Things that were no longer part of a whole but were still beautiful in their own right.
The sad demise of a bird leaves behind a legacy of delicate, scattered feathers on the ground; each one a miracle of creation.
A perfect, spent leaf in autumn hues, cast from a mighty oak to make way for the new season’s growth.
A mussel shell of the most beautiful blue, encrusted with barnacles...once a home, now washed up on the sand bereft of life within.
A garden yielding treasure once the flowers have faded...seed pods, skeletons, sculptural stems and dried petals.
An old key, found; a lone brass buckle glinting on the path; a piece of pottery peeping from the earth on the edge of a field.
She felt the need to gather, to collect and delight in these things; to stash them away in a pocket until home...reminders of a walk, a moment, a season, of the wonders that surround us if we only care to take the time to look.
She is the keeper of all things lost, faded and forgotten...
...for not all treasure is gold.
I have a few fabric patches purchased from Mrs Bertimus (do check out her website mrsbertimus.co.uk and social media pages) and during lockdown I created this wall hanging with one of them, combining hexagon piecing, vintage fabrics and naturally dyed scraps, buttons and quilting. It has a little pocket to store nature’s treasures.
I have quite a collection of feathers, shells, pebbles and pottery shards picked up from walks as well as old buttons, keys and bits and bobs found lying around. They’re all precious and beautiful and I loved the idea of displaying some of them in some way...and so this piece just sort of evolved around that thought and the little story of ‘The Keeper’ in my head. It’s not perfect, but that’s ok...I quite like it as it is. The hanger is an old french carrier bag handle (I think!) purchased from an Instagram account that sells a lot of antique french ephemera and fabrics...I bought them on impulse (a failing of mine!) and I’ve had a couple of them for a long, long time...BUT, I always knew I’d find a use for them eventually! My other half sometimes says I’m a bit of a hoarder, but I prefer to look at myself as a ‘keeper’, much like my story above. Do you ‘keep’ little treasures like shells, pebbles and feathers?
I feel that I already appreciated the simple pleasures in life, but even more so after the last twelve months; treasuring things that are neither gold or sparkly or that cost lots of money...feeling grateful for things that money can’t buy like my health, family and friends. Most of our greatest riches are held within ourselves - kindness, patience, love and gratitude.
New Year Plans?
So I hope the start of this New Year finds you well. In view of ongoing pandemic restrictions, and as a way of lifting my mood, I decided to sign up for an online course in March to hopefully help me develop my felting which is exciting. I feel sure that it will be a useful investment - there is always more to learn and I’m not sure I’ve found my preferred ‘way’ of felting yet...there’s always that feeling that there’s a certain something that I haven’t quite got yet. Or maybe that’s how I will always feel! Looking back, I know I’ve improved so at least it’s progress. I just feel the need to organise something positive, something to look forward to in the near future that I know I will be able to accomplish regardless of restrictions...there are so many online courses available, have you done any you would recommend?
What have you got planned creatively...have you signed up for any courses or workshops? Anything you’re hoping to achieve in the coming months? Do let me know.
So here’s to a happier, healthier, creative year...take care until next time.