Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Feeling more like myself

I am grateful to India Flint for the insights I received during her bagstories project. And I will honor her request not to divulge the construction techniques provided in her private Facebook workshop.

That said, I do want to share part of the journey that led to the creation of this bag ...


As you can see, it is somewhat larger than the bag on the right, which was constructed following India's original instructions ...


But those of you who have been reading this blog for a while will most likely recognize its roots in the Remember 2016 cloth, which utilized Jude Hill's paperless piecing technique ...


Indeed, the first patches in this new bag were trial bits from Remember 2016. Others were remains of last year's Peace Pin Project. And some were made from cloth gifted by Kindred Spirits. Most are linen, either thrift store bought or vintage clothing and linens from my past.

There were even several abandoned slow stitch projects pulled out and finally put to good use ...


Speaking of which ... I recently went through my scraps, discarding many that were too small and/or too shredded to be of much use. But in going through the myriad bits and pieces, I realized that I recognized each one ... where it came from and what project it was used in. The memories that were triggered astonished me. 

So it is that this bag has become a holder of memory. Point to any patch and I dare say I can spin a story (or two or three). In the days to come, I may do just that. But for now, I will rest in the satisfaction of its wholeness and in sharing that here.

Addendum:

First Golden Eye ...


Agarita ...


and Bitterweed ...



15 comments:

Marti said...

Cloth gives so much to us and it keeps on giving as we look at what we create, pulling us back into the making, satisfying our urge to tell a story of a moment, a place in time and always,always, connecting us to what we know to be our truth. For many of us who work with cloth, there is an on-going conversation that begins with the first piece, sort of a question and answer dialogue as we continue to place, cut, rip, dye and stitch and when whatever we have made is finished, then there is the on-going, remembered story. Liz, your bag is a loving, beautiful memory keeper and I believe will become a rare and enchanting family heirloom.

Liz A said...

Marti - Already you are here ... and how welcome your thoughts, as always. I share your love of dyeing and ripping cloth ... and confess that I can't wait to wear some holes in this bag so I can have the pleasure of mending them.

Mo Crow said...

isn't this pattern just a variation on the traditional Japanese Bento bag?

Liz A said...

Yes ... India introduced a patchwork element to the construction and then I took it into my own wonky patching style. There's nothing truly new under the sun.

Nancy said...

Love the bag of memories...the quilt it came through and seeing the flowers that grow near you.
Isn't it funny how well the cloth holds the stories, even for the very young? Years back, I had a group of 3-5 yr olds who made a class quilt. We put the scraps from that (along with scraps of yarn, paper, ribbon etc) in a plastic bag hanging from the easel. the children would dig through the bag and add these treasures to their paintings. A couple of them remembered which cloth bit belonged to which child. You could hear them talking as they worked, "This is ____'s quilt block" -over and over again! precious memory, thanks for reminding me.

Liz A said...

Nancy - children are so incredibly observant ... Don and I are fortunate to have grandchildren, so we try to see the world through their eyes and pay attention to what they make of it all

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

the bitterweed...so straightforward a Being...love

the bag is excellent and recognizing pieces, me, i imagine
its meaning for you. I have another style bag somewhere
....sometime will find it? that gathers into a sack
but can be extended out to hold larger oblong things...would
be a joy to reproduce. If you are wanting to make more bags
i can send pics, measurements, etc or even loan you the bag
itself. I think it might be Indonesian in origin

Liz A said...

Grace - I have been trying time and time again to make a bag I truly love ... and I think I have finally done it. So thank you, but I don’t think I’ll be making another anytime soon.

But thank you, too for this long-ago post:
http://windthread.typepad.com/windthread/2015/09/gifts.html
It was much in my mind as I stitched ... this sense of wanting to make a bag to hold memory and joy and wonder.

Kristin said...

Liz, the bags, both of them, are wonderful memory keepers. Finding and using bits of prior work or work saved from a family piece always gives that great opportunity for story. So many wonderful indigenous communities make bags using bits gathered and this process learned from India is very fine. Now the memory of the making and of the bits gathered will all come together in a beautiful story.
Thanks for posting your work in process with the first bag and now to see your second, wow, just lovely and full of magic.
Namaste

Sue McQ said...

The flowers are lovely - the promise of warmer days to come. The bags are wonderful. Yes, holding so much in the form of story. I was especially drawn to the small sampler piece. Blessings.

jude said...

smile

Liz A said...

Kristin - The wonder of this piece is how many influences it holds ... your pointing out the parallel with indigenous makers gives me much happiness

Sue - The bit of sampler represents my working-life self and the story of my pre-Jude stitching ...

Jude - back atcha

deemallon said...

it's so great to find a use, particularly a useful use, for parked constructions... others above have said it well, our relationships to cloth, etc.so I won't add to that. But, what wanted to share what relly popped out to me this morning: your excellent use of black and white. How lovely those checks are in and amongst the squares of color. So well done.

Hazel said...

A beautiful memory holder- you will have stories wherever you go!

Liz A said...

Dee - I do love the checks ... glad you do, too

Hazel - somehow your comment triggered a memory of the Mother Goose rhyme that ends “she shall have music wherever she goes” ... and that made me smile. Perhaps I need to add some rings and bells ...