My Pattern Pages Are Here!

My Pattern Pages Are Here!
copyright 2008 Laura Blanton

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Looking to the Future

Looking to the future - the future of the arts with which we have been gifted and the tools and fruits thereof. How does that sound?

This is something I have been wanting to talk about for some time. It is not meant to be at all maudlin. In fact, quite the opposite. It is about planning for future generations to take up our arts and see them preserved and perfected as we ourselves have tried to do. Since this is a tatting blog, we all know that closest to my heart is my tatting. I do love to do other things and have tools, supplies and finished pieces to be preserved in those arts as well. When I go to my tatting cabinet and pull out drawers, I can almost see each of my grandmothers with shuttles in hands and lace flying out from their fingers. It pretty much always looked like a blur to me. I have those shuttles. I see crochet hooks and knitting needles making clothing and blankets. I have those hooks and needles. It just so happened that out of nine granchildren on each side, I was the one who was interested in these particluar things. Some of my cousins have other interests and do quite well with them.

All of this to say, someone needs to be appointed as guardians of these things for the future. Most of us, no matter how humble we consider our means, have wills or some form of written instructions as to the disposition of our worldly goods when we no longer need them. Children are interested in assets and personal possessions for the most part. I have tried to cover those things. Those of you with minor children probably have guardianship papers naming who you want to raise your children in your place if necessary. My husband and I both have "Living Wills" and "Durable Power of Attorney, including medical decisions. I have started sharing lots of heirlooms with the grandchildren of my generation that I know will love them most and see that the next recipient knows the value and history of that particular piece. One thing that bothers me is that I have no one interested in learning what I know or taking it any further than it will be when I am gone. I'm sure I can not be alone in this. It could be that our girls and my brother's daughter will one day slow down enough to realize they want to learn, but I'm not looking for that to happen. They are different people and have their own lives and interests. That is not for me to control or make them feel guilty.

What I have been talking to my husband about is naming at least two of my tatting friends to be contacted about taking my tatting things and seeing them divided up where they will do the most good. That could be to help new tatters with supplies like we helped Sherry with her "Four O'Clock Rock" class. Some people might want a special shuttle to keep for their own because my dad made it or Lady Shuttle Maker made it. I don't want someone to uncover a chest of tatting one day that no one remembers to whom it belonged or what it was for. None of us want that. I want to think of my snowflakes hanging on someone's tree for many years to come and recognizing the love that went into them. (Nor would it hurt my feelings if a piece of my lace ended up in a museum.)

I recently heard someone say that all of us want to be remembered. I hope my children and their children will remember me for lots of things, mostly the love that I feel for them. Also I hope I am setting a good example for them to know what it is to lead a life of good morals and sharing what we have with others. After that, I hope someone will one day hold my shuttles in hand and say, "I remember when...."


Lace-lovin' Librarian - Diane said...

I have also thought about what will become of my beloved collections. My daughters have each been given instructions regarding what they are to do with all my worldly goods... at least the special ones. In the meantime, I think I'm going to take on the responsibility of disposing of those items that really have no sentimental value for me. My children will have first dibs on everything, then I'll dispose of the rest. They all know, my tatting shuttles are not to end up in a garage sale!

Madeline's Album said...

Laura this was a very special post. I know just how you feel. I am proud that I have a few of your lovely tatted items.

Tattycat said...

I know you have Diane. You, your mom and I share a lot of the same thoughts and values. I can imagine we are doing some of the same things. I had rather see things settled, where possible, than to leave it for someone else to handle. I know your girls will be good stewards!
Thank you Madeline. You are a special friend and I know you appreciate the love and work in each piece. I am blessed to have some of you in my home as well.

TattingChic said...

Lovely post, Laura, and very eloquent! I agree, I think we all want to be remembered. I often wonder who I will pass my tatting onto, but I try not to think about it too much or it makes me very sad.

Jane Eborall said...

Very thought provoking. I now have a granddaughter who will get (whether she or her mum like it or not!) my stuff. Well, whatever they want. I do sometimes think about this 'problem' but then remember my gran's tatting stuff which I was handed because 'you're the only one who does it'!!! I'll think about it another day, I guess!!! Great post, though. Thanks.

Clyde said...

Very nicely put Laura. I consider myself one of the lucky ones as my two children both appreciate my tatting. We constantly have discussions about what each of them values of my possessions so that when the time comes they will know how to divide my property. I hope whom ever receives your shuttles will treasure them and all that they meant to you.

SY said...

Hi Laura,
I've not been very blog active lately and so seeing this post by you, well it's kinda strange because I've been having a lot of the same thoughts. I've done a lot of looking on Ebay for tatting things and I have to admit that sometimes it really saddens me because a lot of things on Ebay are from estate sales and you have no sense of history of who the items owners are and what their items meant to them. I am such a pack rat and I do have many lovely things but I have three son's and one daughter-in-law and none of them are interested in anything sewing/tatting/crochet or really any crafts. It would break my heart to see my things end up in an estate sale and be scattered to the four winds. I've been thinking along these same lines about deciding now who gets what, now I need to do more than just think about it. I so very much enjoy my tatting things, even though I am still a beginner, I've managed to accrue a lot of old patterns and I do enjoy the history of them.
Yours was a lovely, thoughtful, thought provoking post, and I'm so glad I have the opportunity to read it. God Bless and Godspeed.

Tattycat said...

Dear Tatting Chic. You have no worries about being remembered. You are loved by so many and you bring us so much laughter and joy. So many of us have some of your tatting and it will be remembered. You and I are very much in the same circumstances as far as passing anything down. I didn't mean to make you sad, just wanted to share what I am doing to try and preserve the things that I love.
Glad you liked the post, Jane. I'm sure your precious granddaughter will be delighted to have her Gran's things - both tatting and other. Your legacy will be much longer than that, however, You have touched so many lives and I am one of those. Thank you for all that you have taught me and continue to teach and inspire.
You are very blessed, Clyde. I am sure that your children and their children will treasure your things and speak of you often. They are truly blessed to have you as a father, roll model and teacher.
Hi Sy. I've been missing you. It is odd that we have been having some of the same thoughts, huh? I hate to see things just floating around the internet with no voice of their own. We must try not to let that happen. I have a very strong sense of my heritage and the state of my home proves it. I'm glad the post was thought provoking. That was my aim. You are not just a beginner. You do some lovely things and I'd really like to see the things you have collected.

SY said...

You have such a sweet heart Laura; you are just one of those people that I was immediately drawn to. Would you really like to see pics of my tatting- books/leaflets/shuttles and things- collection? If so, I would be glad to post pics on my blog for you. I haven't been doing much tatting lately but I am crocheting a lot. I am taking advantage of the cold weather to crochet because it gets to be pretty hot trying to crochet in the summer. What can I say, I am hot blooded, enough so I keep my furnace down to 58 in the winter and that is the only time that I am truly comfortable!! I know, I know, I am weird! I have always been like this even below 100 pounds, so it's not an "age" thing with me, just me!

linda cardina said...

WOW!!!!!!!! beautiful work!!!! i am now a follower!!

LadyShuttleMaker aka MadMadPotter said...

This is an incredibly thoughtful post! I think about this issue too. It seems that unless someone has spent time creating anything by hand themselves they just don't get it. (There are the few exceptions.) It seems to me that tatting is largely attached to your reputation. When people think of you they will think of the many creative talents you have and that alone would make anything you "passed along" extremely special and valuable.

Oh...I just had a thought...perhaps you could write little "histories" behind your most special tatting pieces and shuttles. Educating people is the best way to help them appreciate something.

O.K. I'm rambling now! Lot's of Love, Sherry