Hi Sweet Friends, hope everyone has been enjoying some stitchy time and getting some much needed sunshine bling!
This post shares the passing in 2009 of a retired elementary teacher and how her stitching devotion continues to unite her family both old and new, as shared by me, the newest member and her only daughter-in-law.
For stitchers that go before us there is reverence, honor and duty, or at least I believe there should be. In 2008, my soon to be DMIL Katie made an offhanded comment to me that she'd like me to look after her stash down the road. Sadly, we lost her in 2009 at the spunky age of 88, five months after our wedding. Katie was more than my DMIL, more like my DM. While saying our final goodbyes in private, before the lid was closed, we all agreed she would want to be laid to rest with a scrap of fabric, needle and any Prairie Schooler chart, and so it was.
My husband once quipped he liked animals more than he likes most people, a very telling sentiment don't you think? Katie never forgot his Freudian slip and stitched this large sampler for him years ago. Appears to be some light staining, perhaps some Fray Check that bled, I'll give it a gentle scrub and see, wish me luck.
So, last month my DFIL (a strapping 90) asked me if I would go through Katie's overflowing Rubbermaid bin and add her initials to some of her stitching, for the family. I immersed myself in several solitary hours fondling finishes she treasured, reminiscing cherished moments of discussing designers, projects, flosses, fabrics and techniques, and giggling at our many frantic phone calls back and forth across the driveway asking do you have DMC such and such ~ wishing all the while she was beside me. I took note of her progress from her self-taught beginner 7 ct to her it's the best my eyes can handle 18 ct, observing knowingly how her skill and confidence grew bit by bit. Having started stitching after retirement her eyes were not that of a youngster, she stitched feverishly for over 20 years and prevailed admirably.
And as you might have already guessed, of course more than initials were needed, these pieces needed to be finished. I choose ones I thought Katie would have chosen with no particular number in mind. After choosing a handful, I realized I had chosen 6 ~ enough so that DFIL, his 2 daughters and 3 grand-daughters could each choose one for their home.
And so I stitched Katie's initials, added approx. dates, measured, trimmed, added a bit of floss here, tucked a loose thread there, backed each ~ making do, as she would have done, with fabric from her stash and wool from mine ~ a labor of love and respect, of simply honoring Katie.
I'll wrap and give these to DFIL on Fathers Day. It was such a simple thing he asked of me, and I'm so glad he did.
Here's a very small sampling of Katie's work, finished by me. I'm happy to share these with you, pics are clickable. Thanks for your visit today and for letting me share these sweet memories with you:)