My husband’s grandmother Annie was a wonderful maker. She was making pegdolls when she was over 90 years old! My response, lying beside Annie’s in the drawer of the jeweller’s cabinet, is a chrysalis of a pegdoll – back to my preoccupation with ‘there and not there’ again!
My Mother knitted. One of the earliest sounds I remember is that of her knitting needles. She knitted clothes for me to dress my dolls as well as clothing for us. A knitted vest was to keep my favourite doll warm and cosy.
In 2010 for the Brunel Broderers exhibition “Curious Drawers” I worked on a ‘small intimate collection of hand-made items from four generations of family – precious treasures made for each other and displayed in an old jeweller’s cabinet of drawers. I produced my own stitched response to each one. Hand-made, handled with care’.
The exhibition was part of the 2010 Stroud International Textile Festival
I blogged about it on the BB blog here
She was stitching this table cloth when she died. I have begun working on it too. I follow her stitches, see how she guided us gently by the choices of stitches she completed or left half-done.She embroidered all the forget-me-nots. Nowadays you can’t tell which were stitched by her, by my mother, by me.. I hold the same threads, the same scissors. I unwind the threads with the knowledge that all our hands are holding these threads.
Part of ‘Curious Drawers’ – the Brunel Broderers show from May 2010 here
Sometimes the creative process is like an unbroken line – the pencil moving continuously and in intricate or sweeping movements, forwards, backwards, around, over, under – like a never-ending scribble drawing. And from this process of doing, and thinking and the movements of the hands, and connections not even registering or sometimes glimmering, comes something.
This was just one of those – months of thinking, fragile ideas, time playing with the wire itself, and one day, out of all this, suddenly emerged this figure. When I photographed her she was dancing with her shadow – the sun unexpectedly shining strongly on the walls giving another dimension, another layer, another life.
Embarking on a new journey – sharing my creative thinking, a visual diary of progress and reflection.
It will take me some time to piece and layer and reveal my work on these pages.
Where do I come from? Where to begin? Heart rhythms, pulling at my heart strings – generations of family: making, connecting, thinking through hands.