Occupy our hands; democratize sewing!

This short article is sobering: the author reminds us of the value of sewing to individuals and society, and points out that this potentially life-saving skill is at one and the same time demoted to “women’s work” in most of society (but NOT in Waldorf schools), and seen as unimportant (again, NOT in Waldorf schools). I feel lucky to have taught these skills for decades, and to be able to see beyond the ability to stitch up a hem, sewing means much more – in her terms and also in figurative, allegorical – and anagogical terms!!! More on this later ………

http://ecosalon.com/natalie-chanin-sewing-history-alabama-chanin/

The Healing Quality of Weaving

An inspiring idea, and a link to a great resource that looks at handwork in depth and international breadth.

What she writes about weaving is true of any kind of handwork - focusing on the moment (and, I’d add, making an item that is useful in everyday life) helps heal and calm people in turmoil, whether in the long or short term.

http://www.handeyemagazine.com/content/weaving-heal

New Year’s Resolution

By writing this out, and by sending it to Living Crafts magazine, I feel like I’m at the top of a long steep slide. Scary, and exhilarating!

Here’s the link to my resolution; browse around on the lively and enlivening blog; Subscribe to the magazine, or find it in more and more national stores!

http://www.livingcrafts.com/blog/general/craft-resolutions-elizabeth-seward

Link to Waldorf without Walls

Putting up this website has put me back in touch with several ‘old’ friends. Here is a link to the latest newsletter of Waldorf without Walls (I REALLY like the name!).

http://www.waldorfwithoutwalls.com/newsletter/50/

Barbara offers a curriculum, materials and resources as well as supportive personal encouragement and help to home-schooling families all over the US – and, I’m guessing, beyond.

Ira Glass, Spinning and Spirituality

Here’s a short excerpt from Ira Glass about beginning something new and creative: http://vimeo.com/24715531

When I teach spinning, I remind students there are three parts to learning anything new. First, enthusiasm: “this is something I’ve always wanted to do, it’s so exciting, I’m going to get a wheel and spin every inch of yarn for every piece of clothing I will ever use …….”

Second, despair: “I will never learn this, the thread keeps breaking, it’s so frustrating, I don’t see the point ……”

Third, perseverance: “It’s going to be OK, but I have to keep working at it. If I just keep putting in some time regularly, I will develop a feel for the fiber and the spindle. If I am objective, I can see I have made progress, and I know the next step …….”

Some considerable time later comes the stage when I hear others’ praise and compliments, but I know I have a really long way to go to before I achieve a satisfactory result! The art of teaching is balancing encouragement to be pleased with current achievement and encouragement to recognize and to want to take the next step.

These stages are true for creative artists, for writers, for anyone who is growing, and also true in spiritual or religious life.

Here we go!

I am about to post links to this website, hoping it will find resonance! I invite reflections on the site, comments and suggestions – and I may even take some of them up.

Thanks to supportive friends and family, and to Cam, whom I taught how to knit when he was in First Grade, and who constructed this website. Reach him at cameronehrlich@gmail.com. Any oddities are of my own making; leave me a comment and I will fix them.

Please forward the link to anyone who might be interested! Here we go – doing more of what I love to do!