During lock down I started to rediscover things that I had bought with the idea of making something with them. Sewing has always been my chosen activity as I find it focuses my thoughts and is very contemplative. I had been to a sale from The Diabetic Fund here in the Netherlands. They collect all kinds of craft materials from donations and have a sale out in the country. Of course you over buy because everything is so cheap and ideas flow.
One thing I bought was a bag of very small scraps of material. I hadn’t worked a lot with pattern at all. So this was a challenge.
Looking through it I discovered all kinds of patterns and materials that I personally would never choose, they were all fairly small, some christmas, hearts, flowers…..so I mixed them up with some African pieces, Indonesian, remnants from dying experiments…..all kinds of bits and pieces.
I have been experimenting with trying to be freer with my sewing stitches. I am from the generation where embroidery was taught at school, so perfect stitching. I wanted to create something looser more freehand, I still prefer hand embroidery or hand sewing than a machine. I found a gorgeous piece of blue Japanese hand woven cloth and I started. First I made a sample piece and then just let myself go.
I worked all through lock down, don’t ask how many hours….but I became fascinated by what happens to a pattern when the piece is so small, how it interacts with the others pieces, how the stitching combined the patterns even though they were totally different. They all started to connect and make a whole even though they are so diverse. Of course we stitch our own stories into the pieces we make, it was only at the end when it was complete that I saw that I had been sewing my world, even in lock down, a world of diversity of making connections any way I could, of staying connected and treasuring the differences and what beautiful combinations we make together.