Friday, April 1, 2011

Featured Wahm Friday...

I'd like to start a little feature on Fridays where I post information and fun facts about wahm's I know. Here are some women who have influenced me in my creative endeavors...

Grandma Bess

My grandmother Bess was an amazing woman and a wonderful seamstress. She made most of her own clothes, and many of her children's. She would whip up a simple wrap skirt, and go weed the garden in it the next day. She cloth diapered and raised 8 children on a rural farm all through the forties, fifties and sixties. She had this awesome upstairs room in her old farmhouse, with a pool table, windows on three sides with a fantastic view of the country side all around, and mountains of fabric. Polyester, mostly, by the time I came along in the 70's, but fabulous all the same. She would give me scissors, paper, home made flour and water paste, and free rein of her fabric stash. I would make paper dolls and clothe them with her amazing array of patterned and textured double knit. My barbies were as well dressed as my clumsy stitches could make them. So many of my fondest memories are of going to her house and just exploring.

Grandma Virginia's quilt

My other grandmother, Virginia, was the kindest, sweetest, most loving grandma one could have. She spent her whole life serving her family, and loved every minute of it. She was a wonderful crafter. She made each of us grandchildren (four of us) a handmade quilt before she died. Each one unique. They were not her own design, in that they began as panels of cloth preprinted with designs, but the amazing part, to me, is that she hand stitched every stitch on each quilt. Mine is beautiful. Cross-stitched all over, and hand quilted. It took her over a year to make each one, quilting away in the evenings. I love my quilt! I use it on my bed, and she inspired me to create a quilt for each of my own children. I can't wait to "graduate" to handquilting someday...when I can leave it out without the littles fingering it all up with jelly, or something!

Mom and her husband

Then there's my mom, Teresa. She is a cross stitcher, and knitter. She taught me to sew as a child, and later, to crochet. I learned to knit after she gave one of my children a beautiful knitted afghan when they were born. She would spend hours sitting on the couch or at the kitchen table cross stitching these amazing scenes, and each stitch was perfect. I have a whole collection of Christmas ornaments that she stitched and gave to me when I was an adult that I cherish and love to put on the tree each year. She is also a wonderful seamstress, and one Easter made dresses for each of her grand-daughters. She also makes a fabulous Cleopatra costume...

As for me, I love to crochet, knit, and scrapbook. I learned to knit for my fifth child, when I began to cloth diaper him, and I took up crocheting again, at about the same time. I love taking a skein of yarn and turning it into something new. I have scrapbooked (thanks to Mom, who bought me my first supplies when my oldest two were bitty) for going on 12 years, and sewing is something I wish I knew more about...that's for later when I can leave my machine out and it won't get covered in fingerprints. I have so many ideas, I literally could not make everything I want to(realistically) and still sleep! So, I'm figuring out what I want to focus the meantime, I'm just having fun with each new thing!

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