Friday, 11 March 2022

Felting in blue & yellow

 Hi everyone, 

The crisis in Ukraine has really brought home the futility & destruction of war & how quickly millions can be displaced, leaving with only a little suitcase, probably never to return again. The sight of beautiful cities destroyed is soul destroying - why? 

I like to retreat to the conservatory, as I did through the long lockdowns, and do something creative. 

I did a felting course some years back with a really talented felter and it is a very calming process because you have to concentrate on where you want things to be because once you stab / pierce them in, it is almost impossible to change your mind without felting over it & hoping it is covered. 

For my felting I decided to use blue & yellow as the main colours, with sunflowers too as they are the national flower of Ukraine.  I teach war poetry & find symbolism a very powerful medium so I have incorporated a lot in to my images. It started as one & then I was inspired to do variations on a theme. 

I first made this one - dark dramatic colours with sunflowers rising from it. The background is dark, threatening, foreboding. 

The second image has dramatic sunflowers rising defiantly into the dark sky. However, down the centre, you can see sunflower petals falling to the ground where they become bright red poppies (symbols we associate with Remembrance Sunday here. 

The third image was inspired by seeing a post about Faith, Hope & Charity. I have a gold charm my late parents bought me with the three symbols on it & so that was my inspiration. I wanted to combine them in one image & so did them as a trilogy. It was tricky & the cross & anchor should (to my mind) have been in a straighter row but I am pleased with the contrasts of the deep red heart & the bright sunflowers against it. The cross represents faith & so it was edged in gold thread & encircled with metallic beads to highlight the importance of keeping faith when everything else is lost. The anchor seemed lost so I added some blue colour around it but it still needs a little something. 

I knew I wanted to return to the heart shape but started with a blue heart to represent the colours of Ukraine. The sunflowers are heavily sewn with yellow & gold metallic thread, then beaded with metallic centres to show the richness of Ukrainian society.  Long beads pierce the heart but it keeps its shape.

Brown, mixed colours to the left of the shape sweep down to the base with red poppies, beads & red blood beneath the green. The blue sky has star beads sweeping across it with coloured beads which almost encircle the heart so it feels trapped by the details. 

Once I started the last one, I worked solidly at the conservatory table for about 5 hours until I was aware of the light changing as I was beading - it is how I am seeing the war, the symbolism is powerful & heart breaking. 

Do you have one you are more drawn to? Thank you for stopping by, keep the people of Ukraine in your prayers & be thankful for your life where you are. 

Dee ~💕~

Wednesday, 9 March 2022

A decade of remembering ....

 You cannot touch the same water twice & you cannot hold back time. When we look at family photos & faces, we see the past, the present & the future all together, 

Today marks an entire decade without my Mother - I shared the strong women in my family & the news of my Mother's passing.  I know my followers are familiar with many of the stories and of my Mother's great love of sending letters. I shared some of them in emails are just not letters .

I would often get home & find a letter in her familiar script on the door mat & it was a joy to make a cup of tea then sit down & read the news from across the continents. My Mother wrote vividly, telling all news - good, bad, personal, the neighbours, the shop keeper, the supermarket helper, the farmer & the petrol attendant - they were all known to me. 

These special letters are at my desk upstairs, in my room, where I can sit at my desk & read them to take it all in again. That is the beauty of letters - they are a link to the past, to those who took the time to pen the words, even when they were unwell, as my Mother was for the last year of her life. They are in a fabric holder I made from one of her cloths & then embroidered on it, because I learnt to sew at my Mother's knee. She always had something in her hands that she was doing - embroidery, sewing, crochet, writing letters .... 

Once again, on this occasion, I choose to celebrate my Mother's life because that is her legacy - how she would want to be remembered.  A legacy last as long as someone is there to tell the story, to share the idiosyncrasies, the life lived ... 

Be blessed, go through life gently & be thankful for the time you had rather then the time that is lost. 
Dee ~💕~