Friday, January 1, 2016

- Planning to Remember 2016

This year's Christmas ornament turned out to be prophetic:
Rosemary for Remembrance

I have an idea for a new cloth, but it isn't my idea. Rather, it was inspired by the many blogs I read, written by the KINDRED SPIRITS listed in the right hand column just below the Profile, Index, and Search widgets. Every day I look forward to seeing whose posts have risen to the top, wondering what I'll see and/or read next.

The idea is to create a large patchwork cloth over the course of the year, making one patch for each day in 2016 by choosing a color or stitching a word or drawing an image that reflects my experience of that day, sort of like the ornament pictured above. This form of cloth journaling is nothing new, of course, but its expression will be unique to my experience of this year and this place in the Texas Hill country that I now call home.

The spark of the idea was kindled, first and foremost, by Jude Hill, a fellow Long Islander who has written something like 3000 posts in ten years at Spirit Cloth. If you have not taken one of her classes (which have countless video and audio clips), consider that she is offering Spirit Cloth 101 on a donation basis and give it a try. Jude will open your mind to new ideas such as her paperless piecing, which has in turn inspired my own patchplay.

Then there is Judy Martin in Canada, whose latest quilt top over at Judy's Journal is breathtaking in both color and form, the latest in a long line of inspirational works.

Rhonda Ayliffe has delighted me as she spent the past year looking up at the Australian sky ... while Grace Forrest in New Mexico has made me appreciate the wisdom of a daily practice by writing years of her life on Windthread.

I love that Dana in Washington lives the ethos of "the table comes first." While Saskia in the Netherlands alternately weaves tales of the Old Bird King and creates ripples of Kantha across eco-dyed cloth.

Cindy Monte in the great Northwest, faithfully stitched words of 2015, a reprise of her words of 2013 (not to mention that she conjures the most magical boats). Likewise, calligraphic and book artist Fiona Dempster, another Australian, showed me how gracefully words can express peace.

Deb Sposa in California and Mo Crow in Australia, both gifted artists, encouraged me to dare to draw. And Sharon Tomlinson in Texas gave me further encouragement with her Inktense tutorials.

The dyers continually inspire me to keep trying ... Patricia in North Carolina, Maura Ambrose in Texas, Alice Fox in the UK, and India Flint who coaxes color from plants wherever she goes in the whirled.

And there are others who have inspired me to look at life more carefully ... Dee Mallon in Massachusetts with her self-proclaimed outrage, Amy Meissner in Alaska with her keen-edged truth telling, and Velma Bolyard in upstate New York who spins poetic tales with luminous photographs.

There are more besides ... over fifty KINDRED SPIRITS in all. Each one has piqued my curiosity, taught me something new, or simply delighted me with their artistry. Cumulatively, they have enabled me to become more creative and I thank them, wishing them all the best in the new year.

May I be worthy of their gifts.

Addendum: I knew I would forget someone ... Marti in New Mexico does not have a blog of her own, but her graceful words appear in comments here and in many of the other blogs listed above. She, too, is a gift.