Thursday, December 18, 2008
I make lampworked buttons. Buttons are awesome... a fastener. For what? What can they 'open' and 'shut'?
My Mom had a button box that I wish I had now. I mean, she still has the button box, but when I was a kid it had a lot more treasures than it did now. It had old buttons. Buttons from clothing in the 1920's Steel cut buttons that I would give my eye teeth for now. And Bakelite and Lucite buckle type pieces, and buttons. Colors and shapes.
When I was about 10 years old I tried to embroider with an old piece of cut up sheet and black thread and did back stitching on it and sewed a big steelcut button on it. I am drooling thinking of this button. Pretty neat memory though because I remember sitting there working on that piece of fabric and then all of the sudden over my shoulder dropped an embroidery hoop and threads and a stamped piece to embroider, and there was my Dad with a smile on his face. How awesomely supportive of a little kid for her Dad to go out and get the 'cool stuff' for embroidery.
We didn't have much money and I know it was a trip for him to go to the dime store to pick up the stuff and pay for it and it is a very special memory. That embroidery hoop got a LOT of use.
Anyway..Now, when I make some special knitted or felted piece (which I do in my 'spare' time) I hunt for a nifty button to finish it. Or I cut off a button on a sweater if it just has one, and I add a button or a button that is sewn to a pin back.
Was this fascination with buttons just part of that visual thing? Hard to explain but I have always loved to look at things. To LOOK and see the colors and the details. Early memories are of seeing things like these buttons or pictures in books. Do artists have some type of 'thing' as young children too? Some innate need or propensity to absorb visual things?
What do you remember 'seeing' in your childhood?