On Sunday 11th September, I’ll be showcasing and selling jewellery and fibre artworks at a local market. It’ll be a busy, fun-packed day, and I’m beginning to choose what to display on the day. I’d love to see you there!
Two of my fibre artworks have sold this week, Silver Birch with Lavender through from out of the blue studio gallery in Ōpunake, and Summer into Autumn at the Waikanae Community Market. The second sale followed a conversation about the fibres I used, and I mentioned that work submitted to the gallery in Ōpunake is required to be made from “all natural fibres – no synthetics allowed”, and how it’s influenced my choices so that (unless using up bits of my old stash) I now try to use all NZ wool, sometimes cotton, but no acrylics. The ‘browsers’ returned a short time later to purchase a fibre artwork, saying, “We’d like to support you.”
My @bronz.beads first time Mahara Midweek Market was a great success today: it was good to be under shelter from the persisting rain. Some other stallholders had pulled out because of the weather, but when people commented we were brave to be out in this weather, I pointed out that if it was sunny, I’d have to be at home mowing the lawns, but instead I was having a nice morning, knitting and chatting and selling jewellery to the nice folks in Waikanae.
It was great to sell two of the four brand new bracelets I made last night, as well as Christmas ‘trinkets’ – and a couple of knitted wreaths and Xmas trees I took along ‘just in case’.
I’ve always loved silver birch trees with their intriguing bark and silvery trunks. I’ve included them in tapestries, along with pines and other trees, but it was a mosaic image I found on Pinterest that stayed at the back of my mind for a year or more while I worked on other projects.
Now I have time to work on them, my Silver Birch Forest series is up to #8 completed and another one (or maybe more) planned.
If you’ve ever had that feeling of, “I wouldn’t wish depression on my worst enemy—but I wish my friend could experience it for just a day…”
As I ate breakfast in the sun this morning, I’ve been browsing through the March 2012 “Creative Fibre” magazine in which crafters from Canterbury write about the destruction of their equipment, social and business lives in the earthquakes of 2011, and their stories going forward.
I wondered what stories of recovery, inspiration and kindness will come from our collective experiences of COVID-19, a different kind of devastation, but one that’s brought many lives to an abrupt halt. For some, “isolation” has been little different from “retirement”; for others, the social and financial fabric of their lives is shredded and torn.
A good news story is the astonishing success of the “New Zealand Made Products” initiative on Facebook. In less than a week, it’s gained 250,105 members who’re sharing their NZ owned, designed and made products—and getting sales. You may be sure I’ve added my bronz.beads online shop to the listings!
Yesterday, as we move into Alert Level 3, it finally hit me: cabin fever! Most of the projects—I finished knitting those cardigans!—are complete, the garden’s tidier than ever before, I’ve run out of good beading wire and a necklace I made with florist’s wire broke and beads spilled everywhere… basically, I was out of sorts.
Not sure I can blame this on the lockdown, though; some readers will know I live with depression and despite the thank-god-for-antidepressants that keep me from despair and hopelessness, there are still ups and downs, as the black dog tries to throw its shadow over everything.
Finally I stopped procrastinating and got on with collating another book in my “Words of Spirit and Faith” series. It kept me absorbed—husband had to remind me I hadn’t moved from my chair for hours and should take a break—and brought a gratifying sense of accomplishment. And a Facebook discussion led to possible collaboration with someone in the United States—my lyrics and her music.
Because there’s sure to be someone reading this who struggles with anxiety and depression, or who cares for someone who does, I’m offering some excellent and simple resources. If you’ve ever had that feeling of, “I wouldn’t wish depression on my worst enemy—but I wish my friend could experience it for just a day”, share Matthew Johnstone’s “I had a black dog” and “Living with a black dog”—yes, amusing cartoon drawings and words about mental illness (links below).
And if you’ve ever thought someone should just pull their socks up and get on with it, please also read, view or listen to these resources. They could change your life or save a friend’s.
I trust you’re making this time of limitation a space for deciding how you’d like your life and community to be, and what sort of ‘new normal’ we can create together.
Part of my enjoyment in creating jewellery comes from finding names for each item. I’ve named my creations after cocktails, birds, seasons and places. Just now, I’m loving creating earrings using acrylic and glass flowers and leaves, in my new “floral” range.