I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Making Do - Part Two

One of my very favorite categories of primitive collectibles are the odd but treasured objects called "make-dos".

In earlier times when household items were treasured and saved, people took the time to repair and reuse things. This was partly out of frugality--a much prized virtue!, but also necessity. "Make it do, or do without." In pioneer days, a town with a general store could be hours or even days away. During wartime, goods were scarce.

The following is a quote from The Gatheringsa blog that has featured make-dos and sewing whimsies:
"What is a make-do? It is any object that had been broken, or unusable in its former usage, turned into a usable item again."

Sewing whimsies, make-do pincushions, often on recycled base of some sort, are especially treasured.
These are my  newest versions, HEARTS (of course!) for Valentine's Day or any day.

My make-dos often have an implied---maybe mysterious?--- history, a story hinted at by the treasured photos and trinkets I add to the piece.

This is called Goober and Briscoe after the boy and his pony in the old sepia photo. On the back is a love note dated Dec 4th 1944. It reads: I love you my dearest wife & buddy. Lots of hugs and kisses, [signed] Your salty sailor".....

He was stationed in the South Pacific during WW2. Some of the old buttons are brass Navy and Army buttons. Are they from his uniform? Her brothers'? Or.... 

And there's an old key....?

Is the boy her childhood sweetheart, now grown up and gone off to war?
Did he write the note? Did he come home...or is she still waiting?.......you decide.

This heart is Victorian in feeling...was it a memoriam heart? What does the key unlock?

Who was/ is the little girl with the doll?

...Perhaps the owner of the pincushion, sewing and musing on old, faded memories? A child lost to illness, or  a daughter now grown up and far far away, married to a pioneering man who farms the endless prairie in Kansas or Montana. Do you sit and mend, and pray that she is well and happy?

Who gave her the LOVE ribbon and why did she save it forever?

Again, our imaginations differ, so you can decide....these HEART make-dos are available now in my etsy shop, come visit!

The photos and love note were shared by my dear friend Lisa, from her extended family's archive! Thank you, babe!



gone to the beach......