I had to wait to post this Pay-It-Forward until Rexie got her mail. Making her something was a challenge for me.
Rexie was one of the participants in a weekend seminar I advised in WI for many years. She is quite a talented artist and a very innovative teacher. So when she signed up on my Pay-It-Forward list this fall, I was very unsure what to make. Then in conversations, she mentioned she did not have a holiday stocking. And I knew that making something traditional would be something she could make even better, so I searched for ideas online and discovered this one.
Felt stockings are more decorative than functional and so its not going to hold anything too heavy. And now this year's list of PIF's is complete.
I received the mug rugs from the Fall Mug Rug Swap. My partner lives in Canada, and this is what she sent and I received with great appreciation.
The top one she calls "Reap What We Sew" and the lower one is called "Magic Boots". Both are very cute, very well done and very appreciated. I love the fabric choices, and would hope we get to chat more about the techniques we used.
These two quilters teach me so much more about the fabric art in how they work. Although this art is done, like others, so much on one's own, those times we can share how we make our choices and do the work help much more than reading books or watching tutorials.
For me, its such a soul-core activity and every step of it has a deeper meaning. I wonder, sometimes, if I had begun the work when I was younger if I would have looked at it in the same way.
Now, everything has meaning for me from the choices of colors and fabric patterns all the way through the last stitch. It becomes an act where I can solve the hardest and the most simple of problems by seeing with new eyes. Its the cutting apart of something quite beautiful and seeing how it will re-combine to make yet another beautiful object.
It is an act of sharing, of love, of devotion. I don't think I was ready to be in this place 10 years ago. I was not ready to touch these fabrics or to have the where-with-all to take these risks.
Fear can hold us back in many ways. Where do those fears come from, I wonder? Are they messages that struck our souls that come way back in our childhood when some well-meaning adult told us that all trees had to be colored green, and sky colored blue and that we HAD to color in the lines? Are they messages that we got by looking in the mirror and realizing that our bodies did not look like those in the magazines?
Our culture, our religions, our families and social environment tell us that we must fit into certain standards to be 'right' with the world. Where are the people who tell us that what we do and who we are is enough?
I want to thank both Rexie and Kelly for their gifts of friendship and the quilting projects they swap with me. Thank you both for accepting what I create and send to you.