A handmade heritage

Nothing has to inspire me to buy handmade; it is the way I was

raised. My mother was raised on a remote ranch where it was pretty much "make it yourself or do without." That

upbringing was reinforced by a later adolescence in the Depression, when even in Houston rather than on the ranch,

there was no money to get "store-baught."

Her wonderful design sense and skill in many fields of craft,

from sewing to woodworking to ceramics and jewelry, meant that she would almost always make whatever she needed -

a large wooden planter, a dress, a light fixture, a necklace - herself rather than purchase from a store. I don't

believe I ever saw her give a Christmas gift that she had not made until she was nearly 80, when she sadly

observed that she was giving most of her gifts out of museum catalogs that year.

I hope she would approve

of my designs and level of craftmanship. I still kind of labor under an inferiority complex. The only craft I

really think I am BETTER at is cooking. She mostly left the day-to-day kitchen to my father.

I diligently

went to school for many years to learn science and biology and ecology. And I blog about the natural history that I encounter. But now I discover that I

would rather make things, after all. And if I don't know how to make them, to buy them from others who MAKE

HANDMADE.

Abigail Miller, 57, piedras.etsy.com
north Texas
Tuesday, August 5, 2008 11:21 pm