I have so many things to be thankful for. Rob. The love of our families. The home we've made. The fact that that home is, literally, located on an island of sanity in the middle of an upside down world, an island that so many artists call home, so many who have made it their life's work to simply create beauty.
Over the weekend, we saw the Ethan Iverson Quartet play at the Village Vanguard. I closed my eyes through the first three songs, so grateful for the sounds, so grateful to have a respite. However (though you couldn't tell by the music) the musicians were having a difficult time. It was hard for them to come into work that week. Ethan admitted this after a couple of tunes, in a short impromptu speech in which he dedicated the rest of the concert to Billy Higgins: a drummer, an American, and a Muslim. The set was sublime. It was beauty.
Artists are struggling with beauty right now. Beauty feels ridiculous and ignorant right now. Useless. But for the audience, it is supremely needed.
Each morning, we wake early (well, one of us earlier than the other), and try to start the day with something beautiful. As I search the screen for a small distraction, I think about my own small distractions, queued up to publish, becoming increasingly more ridiculous with each minute. By the time photos are taken and (hamhandedly) edited, there's some new atrocity that makes everything else... unimportant? Undone.
But Rob reminded me that this is exactly the sort of the thing we're looking for in that early morning hour, and when we find that thing, we don't consider the author to be either ridiculous or ignorant. We're thankful to sit on the couch and gaze at a bit of beauty for a moment. We're thankful to sit in a small jazz club and be surrounded by the sound of beauty.
It doesn't seem enough to create beauty, but it is not possible to fight without it. So, I'll continue to post these bits of cloth, and I'll continue to make beautiful armor that transcends at least my demeanor, if not the climate.
Will every post come with a disclaimer that I can't stand what is going on? If things continue as they are, then yes. I'm not okay with this. None of us should be. This is not America.
The sewing details.
Top: Simplicity 1099, hacked into a hi-lo top, added sleeves, & pleats to the hemline
Skirt: By Hand London's Charlotte skirt, with an added back vent
Fabric: Wax print from Mood Fabrics, using my January "fabric allowance"
I had a 6 yard cut of Supreme Wax Osikani to play with, which was extremely freeing. My immediate thought was to make a matching ensemble, full of pleats and frills and larger pattern pieces that wouldn't break up the print. I then fought myself for about an hour, thinking I should probably make something a little less "out there."
Then I reminded myself that "out there" is where I want to live.