In January I published the free Old Wise Tree Pattern and Tutorial here and invited lacemakers around the world to find insptiration in it. I thought that sharing one of my first original lace designs online would be a felicitous way to celebrate my fortieth year in lace craft, especially in time when I could not teach any lacemaking classes.
The first group that contacted me was the Western Australia Branch of the Australian Lace Guild, asking for permission to re-print the pattern in their newsletter. I was more than happy to agreee, because I like to support lace magazines. They have played important role in keeping lacemaking alive and accesible to generations of lacemakers, particularly in countries without long lacemaking tradition. Nine months later, I was thrilled to recieve an update from the WA Branch, with results of the group’s lacemaking challenge. The photos revealed beautiful trees, skilfully executed and rich in originality – each tree representing a truly unique interpretation of the theme. Just like the real trees are shaped by the soil, water and air they grow from, the lace trees carry the imprints of the lacemaker’s hands, mind and soul….
Thank you, Gillian, for organizing the challenge, and all lacemakers who participated in the event. Your lace art shows that handmade lace craft is alive and well in Western Australia.
What a wonderful tribute to bobbin lace and creativity!
Some of the lacemakers agreed to exhibit their works in the Old Wise Tree Gallery, which now displays seventeen original lace works from three countries.
Perhaps more lacemakers will join as well. I would like to ensure everybody that the lace trees do not have to be perfect. Indeed, absolutely perfect trees are rare and that’s exactly the beauty of nature – it just is as it is, content with being and living according to the natural cycle.
May this perspective inspire our enjoyment in lace, and life…
It is earlier that usual, to make your shopping for Christmas gifts easier and the postal workers at least a little bit happier. Their work is still very stressful as they are trying to comply with all pandemic regulations and overcome the unprecedented disruptions in air and ocean transportation. While I find it frustrating when an occasional package does not get delivered on time, or is returned to me for no good reason, I have a lot of compassion for people who have to deal with impossible situations at work every day.
While it’s much quieter in my lace studio, things don’t happen easily, either. As a result of the supply chain disruptions, material sourcing has become quite adventurous, especially for the tool kits that contain a lot of parts. Who knew that finding a little box for pins can be so much fun? Or that fine crochet hooks can simply disappear from the surface of the earth? Well, now I know, so I am quite proud to announce that there are eight complete wire lace kits with medium bobbins in stock at this moment! Wires of all colours are back, after a huge scare when I just kept thinking, what would we all do if we lose the only source of wires suitable for fine lacework? Meanwhile, fine bobbins are still on back order, and if all goes well they will leave Belgium soon and might still arrive in time for this sale.
It’s been a difficult year for me and other artisans and small businesses, and it is almost a miracle that I am still here and able to keep the tradition of the annual Christmas lace sale. And determined to do my best to overcome all challenges and get the tools, materials, patterns and some original lace art to you. Because I believe that creativity must and will prevail.
Happy shopping to lacemakers who need some wire lace supplies and to lace connoisseurs who need some unique gifts. And happy lacemaking to you all!