“…Looking through her red box of memories…”


I’m taking a break to write you this little note and drink some coffee. I’ve been painting the bedroom floor white as part of The Big Sort Out and I’m imagining it looking like John Lennon’s room in the “Imagine” video rather than the mad cluttered affair, with hand me down furniture, that its been for the past 12 years.I may be hoping for too much from a £5.99 tin of White Silk emulsion and a few trips to the charity shop with bags of “stuff”.Still, these past few weeks have been all about dealing with “stuff”, memories and attachments for me.

Friends and family are on the move which has meant venturing into attics, both real and metaphorical, to see what really needs keeping and what must be let go of. I’m not a hoarder but letting go of things with emotional significance is very hard for me; so I was surprised, if not a little shocked, to watch the ease with which Jake disguarded his childhood drawings,once coveted toys and books.Taking part in a car boot sale yesterday just reinforced the fact that we are drowning in a sea of stuff! It has been quite cathartic to lose the excess baggage but it has made me ponder the bigger picture in a quite unsettling way…why do we keep things? If we throw away our memories (letters, diaries etc) how will anyone remember us- and does it matter? Why do we need so much stuff , and shouldn’t what we do have be either practical or truly beautiful? As a very good friend of mine asked recently, “What do you do about letters from the Tooth Fairy?”. I suppose its all a question of editing.

After all that it seems odd to show pictures of my cushions to you, in the hope that someone might want to have a little more “stuff” in their lives! However, so much love and time and effort has gone into these that I think even William Morris might approve…

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”

It is a sad fact of life that I have made more money this week by selling old rubbish and broken toys than I have by selling the things that I make and I know a lot of people who feel the same about their own work. I would like to buy something from an artist,designer or craftsperson every month but need to start selling my own work first….

So, for now the rain has stopped and the sun has even made an appearance for the start of the Summer Holidays. The white paint has covered over the imperfections, the memories are packed away in boxes and its time to get busy with the next chapter. I’ve just listed some new things in my Etsy shop and I’m going to make a SALE page on Facebook for these Airmail brooches later this week…

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One response to ““…Looking through her red box of memories…”

  1. jayne hewison

    Hi, I don’t know what makes us suddenly ponder on how much we have, and actually how much we really need. I think creative people tend to hold onto stuff as you call it for the very reason that we may, at some point, need that particular button, fabric or something else crucial! In the last few days I have done just that, I gave away a lot of velvet scraps, lovely fluid ones thinking probably wont ever use those so gave them to a friend for her groups she works with and lo and behold, what do I get an order for – yes – velvet and lace work!!! Oh well, plan B and back to the charity shops!! I had kept every single birthday card my daughter (now 27) had received, I asked her if she minded if I sorted them out. She didn’t so I just kept her first, 18th and 21st birthday but I have to say putting them in the recycling bin was sooooo hard, I even was tempted to go back in and get some out! Oh and my final admission is that I have got every baby tooth in a box! My friend and I discussed this and she has her son and daughter’s too. Not much help am I but I do agree it is quite cathartic to have a clear out to make a bit of room for new purchases!!!!!!! jayne x p.s. cushion is absolutely stunning, love the embroidery.

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