There’s A Light

No matter what goals you seek to accomplish, aspirations you wish to define or battles you aim to conquer, there is one thing that is for certain. When all seems bleak and foreboding, the one truth you can be sure of is that there is always a light. It is not always easy to see, but it is perpetually there.  I have finally reached a point where I now stand at the doorway to that light.

I officially have sleeves… and they sparkle.

Strip Art Sleeve in progress

I know that intro seems a bit over the top for a little black pullover, but this is an important accomplishment for me. I’ve drifted away from so many endeavors that I enjoyed doing, just because they weren’t going in the direction I thought would evoke a sense of place, and an image of success in the eyes of the world. I’m still trying to figure out when I became that person—the person so concerned with what would be right for others, that she forgot all the things that were more importantly right for her. I just want to be the right me. The only thing this would require me to do is simply spread my wings, and let the wind take me.

The Obscure Zone

When I was a very young, I always enjoyed living in the obscure zone. Being an only child, I suppose I was never blessed, or cursed, with someone to discourage me from wanting to be unique. Sometimes I get the impression that I saw it as blasphemous to just want to blend in. I didn’t immediately like things because everyone around me liked them—I liked things because I thought about how they affected me, and then consciously decided whether or not I would allow them to be a part of my life. Being that young, I had not yet been conditioned to believe there had to be other deciding factors. It was just me, and how I believed things should be. Deep down inside, I knew that little girl was still in there somewhere. She had just been lead astray by the strong arm of society. It was that ever-present light that coaxed me back into the obscure zone—where I will always belong.

Yarnspirations

In my early youth, I would sit and crochet with my Godmother. She always made little slippers for me and my mom for the holidays. My mom, who was a little over 6’ tall, wore about a size 11 shoe, and I was probably a size 8 back then. Since I too was quite tall, especially for my age, I don’t quite know where my 4’ 8” Godmother was going with these little wool slippers she made, but my mom always seemed to love humoring her, so we wore them proudly.

She taught me how to do single and double crochet stitches, but I never managed to make anything other than tube tops and blankets for my dolls. This was more than likely due to the fact that there were no yarn craft inspirations, or Yarnspirations, for me to aspire to. The sweaters you buy in the stores were predominantly knitted, so I couldn’t relate to that, especially since I thought knitted garments had to be made by machines. I thought there was no way those sweaters could be done by hand. Unfortunately I had no one to tell me otherwise at that time. So the only yarn-craft I knew was crochet. But all that I was exposed to, in that world, were horribly color-uncoordinated granny square blankets, combination table/church lady hair cover doilies, and my Godmother’s uncomfortable little crochet Christmas slippers.

The detailed texture of the stitches hurt the bottoms of my feet, and they made me slip on the linoleum to the point where I had to struggle just to walk in them. But I loved her, so it was worth whatever additional effort it would take for me to let her know I appreciated them.

I’m so happy that at least now I have found crochet and knitwear designers that create inspiring garments that I can truly appreciate, and aspire to. Knitting is a thing again and it’s a lot easier to find like-minded individuals who enjoy and appreciate the Yarn Arts as much as I do.

To Sew or Not to Sew

My love of garment design started when I was in preschool. My dad, who was a Teamster (truck driver), hauling garments for Calvin Klein, Gloria Vanderbilt, Lord & Taylor and various other designers in the garment district, bought me a Holly Hobby Sewing Machine, so I could make use of the left over fabric I procured at his various pickup locations. The clothes I made for my dolls with it were a lot more relative to what I believed clothes should look like, so I eventually forgot about crocheting. By the time I was in High School, I had made several of the tops I wore to school. They were not always ready-to-wear quality… Ok, they were never ready-to-wear quality, LOL!! But since I made them, I couldn’t see anything wrong with wearing them.

I had painted the Japanese symbols for Love & Happiness down the side of my jeans, along with various flowers and peace symbols. Somehow Dorothy had managed to click her heels and find her way out of Oz, but I couldn’t figure out a way to escape the 70’s, a good decade after the fact.

I enjoyed making my Halloween costumes to wear to the Village Parade. One year I went as Romance 1600 Sheila E. I loved wearing the blue satin, lace and ruffles. I even made Prince’s Mountains outfit for the love of my life. I’m surprised he still spoke to me after I whipped up the flair-leg, button down, hip huggers and belly shirt, bat my eyelashes and pleaded with him to wear it. LOL!

There was also a top that I will never forget as long as I live. I can see it as if it were in front of me right now. I made it with an electric blue fabric that I scored while dumpster diving at my dad’s Lord & Taylor pickup location. The fabric had small black symmetrical designs all over it, and gave off a shimmer like Silk Charmeuse. I used it to make a sleeveless top. Well… It was actually completely open on both sides. No stitching whatsoever besides the shoulder seams and an opening at the hem for me to pull it on. There was quite a bit of exposure on either side of my upper body. I’m aware of that now, but for some reason, back then, I didn’t seem to think much of it. I may need to go through some type of therapy to figure out why. Actually, when I think back today on most of the garments I made, I don’t know how I managed to get through High School.

Although I don’t sew often now, I never lost my appreciation for sewing. I just became more interested in deepening the process of garment creation by learning to create the fabric I would be working with. Knit & Crochet gives me that opportunity, and a new and heightened sense of gratification.

Instant Gratification Bug

What I most enjoyed about sewing, over crocheting, was that I could want a top, and have it the next day, or two days tops. I think I looked at sewing as the reluctant cocoon of the instant gratification bug. My lack of patience kept me at a distance from the yarn arts, but I’ve grown up quite a bit now and realize that some things are just worth waiting for.

Now I constantly scan the net for collections by Sandra Backlund, Rodarte and various other knitwear designers. I’m also starting to like designs I’ve seen by Alessandra Russo.

Their knitwear designs satisfy my Yarnspiration needs. I deeply appreciate their mastery. My eye cannot get enough. If not for the art of patient knitting, we would not have exceptional works of art such as these:

Sandra Backlund Woven Knit Skeletal Top (Last Breath Bruises Collection)

Sandra Backlund Skeletal Top

Sandra Backlund Red Headress (Don't Walk Collection)

Sandra Backlund Red Headress

 

Rodarte - Multi-Texture Dress at Opening Ceremony FW2009

Rodarte – Multi-Texture Dress

Joan Smalls in Lace Rodarte Knit Dress - FW2008

Rodarte – Lace Knit Dress

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alessandra Russo - Knitwear

Alessandra Russo – Knitwear

I still get impatient from time to time. Like the moment I began making the sleeves for my pullover. I will eventually learn the art of patient knitting, but until then, I have to settle for a short sleeve pullover. At present, I’m on the 2nd embellishment stage. My original strip art sleeve idea had to be revised. The strips were too thick and would overpower the shimmer of the gold floss in the sleeves. I decided to try chain stitch strips instead. Maybe the thinner strips won’t overpower the initial idea of the piece.

Strip Art Sleeve Detail

Strip Art Sleeve Pullover

If that doesn’t work either, then I’m sure I will figure something else out. I’m just happy to know that it won’t be long before I can wear my first hand-knit pullover sweater. It’s a new year and things are moving forward as planned.

Happy New Year!!!  Party emoji  Cocktail emoji

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9 thoughts on “There’s A Light

  1. Just wanted to say that it’s so beautiful and inspiring that you’re following your dreams and doing what you love to do, regardless of what anyone else thinks! Keep going! 😊 I may not be a knitting enthusiast myself, but I can appreciate a fine pullover when I see one. 😉 If I saw that in a shop, it would certainly attract my eye. Gorgeous sleeves! ❤️Also, that “multi-textured dress” is ART! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The sleeves came out beautiful! I’m so happy that you got to finish them. I didn’t know you crocheted when you were younger…wool slippers LOL i wish I could have seen these.

    I’m so inspired by your mentality and grateful to have such a positive influence like you in my life. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hello, Belinda! …From Your Like, and Your kind comment on my post, was
    rather intrigued by the title of Your site. Came there, went to Your About, and Liked it. Would have liked to write these few lines there, but found no facility to comment there, (Intentional?)

    In this post, would like to share my thoughts on Your:

    “I’m still trying to figure out when I became that person—the person so
    concerned with what would be right for others, that she forgot all the things that were more importantly right for her.”

    All that is a little mystifying, to say the least! If,

    A: “(a) person (is) so concerned with what would be right for others, and

    B: If the person “became that person,”

    I wonder where the hitch is. Was not “A” “importantly right for her?”

    *******

    In my own life, I have been “concerned with what would be right for others.” AND NEVER LACKED FOR ANYTHING, …LOVE, HAPPINESS OR PEACE!

    But, to be frank, I too had the questions that You have presented in that Quote.

    Hope I have not been too mystifying myself!

    Love and Regards. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi! Thank you so much for visiting my page. I’m sorry you were not able to find the comment section. I’m relatively new to Word Press and I’m still trying to figure out all the quirks of using the platform and templates correctly.

      I deeply appreciate your comment and insight. What is right for others has always been, and still is most definitely of high importance to me. Therefore, you are correct. What is right for others, in that sense, would also be right for me; as we should all move towards oneness. But sometimes when you neglect yourself and your own needs so much, you can inevitable become of little value to others. I look for people like you because I can tell that you have found a way around some of the things I need to avoid. I know I can learn from that. Since I’m not always surrounded by the most loving environment, (New York can be quite difficult) I have to better understand myself and my own needs in order to build that loving environment wherever I go. In my post, I was referring more to my choosing to live my life and validate success based on how others felt it was best to live their lives and their definitions of success. This is not right for me. Having a lot of money, houses and cars may be the ideal mark of success for many, but that doesn’t mean it’s the mark of success for me. I didn’t realize what was more important to me until my daughter asked me if I had 1 million dollars, what is the first thing I would do with it. That’s when I realized that I didn’t really want the things that for many years I thought I wanted. I thought I wanted those things because I believed it was normal, and was what the majority of the world would want. But in actuality, I have not, nor should I ever attempt to live my life that way. It always felt odd when I tried. Now I know why. I’m not meant to be that person. But the person you are referring to, I actually like that person. If anyone, that is the person to be. ~Live 4 Love 😊

      Like

      • Hello, Belinda! Nice to get that long response! Thanks.

        In Yours, I find quite a few threads, some of them intertwined.

        1. What is right for others, WOULD be right for Us.

        2. Neglecting oneself is a Mistake We all make. Nothing can function without Nurturing or Maintenance.

        3. Next, You have written: ” In my post, I was referring more to my choosing to live my life and validate success based on how others felt it was best to live their lives and their definitions of success.”

        And You Yourself have Rightly pointed out: “This is not right for me.”

        Here, instead of ‘Maintenance Strokes’ necessary for oneself, it becomes a question of ‘Living our lives according to the Unsuccessful-Guidelines of a very foolish world!’

        4. You have put it all very well, my Dear! “Live 4 Love!” 🙂

        Let’s Just Do it! Love and Regards.

        Liked by 1 person

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