Tuesday, 20 January 2015

This Mending & Stitchery Thing.

A word on the name, Mending and Stitchery.
These words have a multitude of meanings in my life, and somehow seemed best for tying together the different parts of my life that I'll be blogging about here.
The most obvious one is the fact that I sew. My primary medium as an artist is textile based, I adore stitches, thread, wool, I make my marks with them. And I love mending things. Visible mending is my latest addiction, partly because I never had the patience to do things perfectly, but also because I love imperfect things, I love unfinished, I love half things, I love when the making is visible in the end piece. And I was delighted to discover the Japanese have a name for this (but of course they do) which is Wabi-Sabi.
  1. Wabi-sabiWabi-sabi ( わび·さび) represents a comprehensive Japanese world view or aesthetic centred on the acceptance of transience and imperfection. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is "imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete".
You can read a lovely piece explaining Wabi-Sabi in the links below. It's wonderful to see this concept creep into western mainstream. (I believe Pinterest may be hugely responsible...)

Over on Milkmoon, a regular analogy that crept in to my writings was the idea of how Life is made up of a Great Weaving of Threads, a concept I love. The people and relationships in our lives, events, journeys, phases, each a different colour and texture, I love to think about how those threads weave together to make this tapestry of my life, of pulling those threads tighter, tucking them in nice and secure when they loosen, and on occasion, perhaps, loosening or snipping them, if needs be. (If anyone has read the wonderful Alvin Maker books, this was a concept that was used beautifully in the Native American story arc, for the world and how people have roles, and how their lives play out.)
This blog is about many things that are blooming in my life right now, things that for a long time seemed too diverse to reconcile into one place, but they have now come together into a Thing cohesive enough to stitch together, under the loose mantle of Sustainable Living. (I'm not sure I want to really use that term, but it will do for the time being. I'm hoping another word emerges over time).

I wrote before on Milkmoon too, about Common Ground, and my thoughts on community, and building community, and what it means to me, and to us as humans. We have helped create a thriving hub here in our town, a place where people can connect with one another, to find others who are on the same wavelength (I always loved the imagery of that phrase ~ wavelength ~), and where we can get projects and ideas off the ground. A tying together of threads, as it were.

And a word on that word 'Thing'. I do love a good Thing. It just seems to perfectly sum up so many different...things. It originally comes from the Old Norse word for 'assembly', and in Dublin, until 1685, the Thingmote was a mound, 40ft high and 240ft in circumference, where the Norsemen assembled and made their laws. It was eventually taken down at great expense, and the mass of earth and stone was used to raise up what is now called Nassau St. (ever wonder why it is so much higher up than Trinity?), at the time called St. Patrick's Well Lane, a place prone to flooding (more reading here, if you fancy). I'm not sure how the word came to it's present day, all encompassing meaning, (I'm sure it's long winded and interesting), but I love that it originally meant a place to gather, something which means a lot to me. I love gatherings. I love bringing people together.  I love talking with people and exploring ideas. And this is something I hope to do here.

People are gathering at Common Ground and talking about sustainable living, and they are gathering at Another Way and talking about sustainable, nurturing eduction for our children, and this Thing here is really just somewhere that I can flesh out some of the ideas that are driving my involvement with these, and other, projects, such as how we can house ourselves, feed ourselves, and the impact our daily choices have on the world around us.
And this is where the Mending part comes in. We need to mend this broken society we have, the beautiful planet we are destroying, the childhood which is being rubbed out for children across the world. We know these things are happening, and with that knowledge comes responsibility, we cannot ignore them any longer and we now must act.
And Together is the only way.

Reconnecting : 

Japanese style :

Norwegian style : 

No comments: