A Stitch in Time
I’ve been possessed recently to take up my crochet hook and embroidery needle again, two crafts that I never mastered and likely never will. It’s been a challenge: threading the needle, trying to accurately count the crochet stitches. I specifically wanted to learn how to make these darling crocheted flowers; my results are still a bit bobbly, but at least they’re somewhat recognizable. As with many crafts, it’s also partly the beauty of the supplies that draws me in: when I find lovely yarns on clearance for $1 - $2 a skein, they must come home with me. But my impaired efforts make me feel rather like one of those ‘unaccomplished’ women from Jane Austen’s novels!
Embroidery had been on my mind, but coming across these funky old-fashioned Aunt Martha’s patterns at Ben Franklin’s sealed the deal. (My goodness – looking at this website, they still carry the ‘Baby Animals’ pattern that my mom used on my baby quilt. I’m in awe.) The last time I embroidered was nearly twenty yeas ago; I was 13 and in 7th grade home economics, where I made the sampler on the right. Hopefully a bit of practice will get me back to my 7th grade abilities!
This little sampler is acting as a portal into junior high memories; I’ve been startled by the way in which looking at it brings back images of the large, tidy home ec classroom, the teacher, the view out the generous windows onto the green lawn of our school. Many people note the effects of smell on the memory; the effect of physical objects, long tucked away in a drawer and then taken out later, is just as powerful to me. These sampler stitches have literally become a stitch in time for me, firmly stitching my memories onto the fabric of my life.
What beautiful things draw you into artsy pursuits? What things act as touchstones for your memories?