Friday, April 4, 2014

Style Influences and Lack Thereof

I've been thinking hard lately about my design roots -- why do I have such a compulsion to make, and what influences my personal style?

I make because I was raised a maker, by makers. My Mom stitched and weaved and gardened and cooked and baked. My Dad built a tree house and a go-cart (and roads for the go-cart) and a train table and a loom. And that's just my parents -- the rest of my family were makers too.

My style is influenced by nostalgia. I had a simple childhood of sticks and dirt, hand-me-downs, one tattered Pendleton shirt, needles and thread, and four older brothers and sisters that treated me like gold.

We spent our weekends at our woods camp, off the grid, climbing trees and swimming in our pond. If I had forgotten a swim suit my mother said, "Just swim in your underwear". Surely this was not what my friends did, but whatever, okay.  Little did my Mom know what this would lead to.

One Friday when I was a Sophomore in college my friend Jen came to my door and said, "Tonight a couple of the boys downstairs are streaking through the quad. Think about it -- last year you would not dare go streaking because you were a Freshman. Next year you will not go streaking because you will not live here. This is your single opportunity."

Guess who went streaking through the quad that night.

In the following months there was a spate of streakers (not me, I had met my requirement), and when the weather got warmer we resorted to jumping into the Lamprey River at Wiswall Bridge, swim suits optional.

On a dark night my friend Paul was standing at the bridge railing talking to a really pretty gal, a really pretty naked gal. Paul was short like me and tongue tied around girls. I did not want to miss this. But he had drunk some liquid courage, and I was stunned by how cool and collected he was, chatting about class and such. And then the girl climbed onto the railing. Paul's mouth dropped open and his eyes grew huge. He grabbed my arm and blurted, "OH-MY-GOD-SHE'S-NAKED!"

I hope you have a grand weekend. (But don't streak because nowadays it'll earn you a sex offender record!)


gale (she shoots sheep shots) said...

Love this post! Miss you. When do we do our meetup day?

Ellen Mason said...

Let's hash out a date when you get back from DC. Maybe I'll climb in yer luggage for TNNA...

hivetender said...

Funny post, must add your blog to my followings. Just realized where I know you from!
Saw you at spinners guild meeting last weekend and kept thinking....hmmmm...where, where, where do i know her from. I follow you on there from following Gail, who was my B&B friend from Reinbeck (yep i got in the Reinbeck video!). Small world....Mystery solved.

craftivore said...

Wait, this is post about style? ;) Mostly what I got out of it was nakedness. I always love your illustrations, you bring a smile to my face.