Yesterday afternoon I was dangerously near the Used Book Superstore after some medical appointments so stopped in. I found several older and interesting needlework books filled with stitch diagrams and Things that Passed as Art in the 1970's. The kind I grew up with and spent my summers enjoying. Also, I found a gorgeous book on handmade books, and can see how the two subjects overlap. From the vintage section I snagged a big book of photography and imagery from the great Cathedrals of Europe, and a beautiful English book filled with floral photography from the late 1940's. Iconic. Embroiderable. That store is filled with gems! Books are treasures and are little artistic field trips when we let ourselves get immersed in them.
Feels like a nesting time right now, getting ready for the long winter ahead, finding creative paths to escape down when the blinding and colorless natural environment traps us indoors. Bring on the chilly air, the snow-bright light in my home studio windows, and lots of time to stitch. I feel like the next work I make is going to have more machine and hand embroidery in it, and might be smaller than the usual pieces I make. I am gathering threads like a squirrel with nuts in anticipation of new directions. While I am not knee deep in a big project right now, I've learned that it is ok to percolate, and the obsessive art making stage is sure to follow. Back surgery is in my immediate future, and while I am discovering (much to my surprise) that I am really scared about it, I hope to focus on keeping my hands busy to help maximize recovery. One stitch at a time, one beautiful, colorful, textural thread at a time. And maybe a few beads.
What will you make today?