Thursday, February 4, 2016

The Connecting Thread

Many of you know that for years I spent hours of my time doing Victorian embroidery. Once in awhile, I still miss the the bright embrace of that wonderful artform. In the dead of winter one of my escapes is to visit antique shops. Every time I see a piece of lace or hand crocheted doily I stop to look at it. I have rescued dozens of vintage laces, handkerchiefs and doilies. I take them home and gently restore them to their brightest form. I seldom pass them up. I always feel a connection to the artisan who created the original piece. I want to give their work a life again. This little round doily was originally from Paris.
The crochet edging is done by hand. I wanted to revisit my freehand embroidery days and adorn it with flowers and glass pearls. As I worked on this piece, I realized that beyond my floral background, my flourishing technique is also based in my embroidery days. I seldom worked with a pattern. I just wanted to adorn things with some Victorian touches. The same is true of my flourishing. I stare at the blank page and see what emerges. With embroidery and with flourishing, you start with your biggest elements of the design and add your smaller elements around it, filling in with accent strokes and stitches as you go. The little visit back to my embroidery stash helped me to see the connecting thread between the two art forms much more clearly. Both require peace of mind. They both bring on a sense of peace and meditation while working. Both require you to completely engage with the medium. Both are very tactile. It was a bright diversion to revisit needle and thread. The heart flourish clearly reflects some of my embroidery experience.
Neither the flourish or the embroidery reflect perfection. They both meander freely and organically. Nothing is preplanned or designed. Both are the result of happy play and just letting the creation process happen. Happy flourishing. Just play!!!