Silver Linings

Silver linings have been on my mind for some months now. In spite of the fact that I do not consider myself an overly optimistic person (I live with one, though!), I have found that the small mercies that occur quite often have been a significant factor in my outlook over the past year. I began to think of silver linings more and more as the new year approached. We’ve all got a long way to go before the restrictions we now live with will loosen, so it’s important that we stay the coarse however we can. For me, that will involve gratitude for silver linings.

I’m hesitant to list my silver linings. That doesn’t seem to be the point. The point is noticing them, being grateful for them, listing them privately to myself. Perhaps they have made the difference between madness and sanity.

During a year when I wasn’t certain I’d ever see my home again (perhaps a bit dramatic but definitely a worry), and during this time when my family grieves the loss of Bob’s mother in the last month of the year, there have been other moments that take some of the sting out of the hard things. Life has always been this way, but this year I’ve taken more notice of it.

After Bob’s mother passed he began to search through boxes and boxes of old photos. Together we’ve taken a wonderful trip down memory lane.

Our younger son moved back to the East Coast to live with us in September, after he had spent a long spring and summer isolating due to the pandemic, and being mostly confined indoors in the mildest part of the country due to the wildfires spreading through California. He came to us with his partner Melody and their Siberian husky, Mila. This is the first time in my adult life that here has been another female in the house. What a marvelous addition Melody is! She expressed interest in learning to weave, and since I had a very long warp on my Baby Wolf for making kitchen towels in an Ms & Ws threading from Strickler, I thought she might enjoy trying her hand weaving the last few yards of that warp. She made two towels: the first in plain weave and the second in a straight twill. Next time she’ll make the warp and dress the loom. She would like to weave a shawl while she is here.

I am nearing the end of winding a warp for what I hope will be a fun blanket for Tori, granddaughter #1. It’s a variation on Susan Poague’s draft for circles in turned taquete. I’ve expanded the draft to 16 shafts (Susan’s design is 8 shafts.), and I’ve chosen a heavier cotton yarn for this project to make it a better blanket weight. Or so I hope! My warp and weft is 6/2 unmercerized cotton from WEBs. I’m so excited to get this project going. If it works as I hope, I will post the draft here.

This is Tori, who will get this blanket. Her family is in our small bubble, but we don’t see them too often since they live so far away. They have a lake house that is halfway between their house and ours, so we’ve met there a couple of times. When we saw them last week we celebrated Tori’s birthday, Christmas, and my birthday. It was festive! In this photo she is playing with her first installment of her monthly activity box from Kiwi.

How has the year started for you? Now, more than ever, we need to stay connected and get excited and inspired by the new work that’s out in the textile world. This morning a friend sent a link to this article from Architectural Digest about a new tapestry by Helena Hernmarck. I hope you enjoy it! The photo alone should do that! I hope it gets your juices flowing. I’ve bought almost a dozen new books this year, and I’m so thankful for each of them. In the next post I think I’ll write a short review of each of them. Let’s keep each other engaged!

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1 Response to Silver Linings

  1. Melody Serra says:

    Awww, I just read this. Thank you for teaching me so much and being such an amazing teacher. The Helena Hernmarck piece is absolutely stunning.

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