I believe in my walls.....

Several things came together to inspire this post.  The most recent was a comment by Rengin Yazitas  asking if I had my own paintings on my walls.  Actually I only have ONE painting and not a single piece of crazy quilting hanging on my walls.  Every single bit of available wall space is covered with samplers.

Of this particular grouping my  favorite  is "Yard by yard life is hard, inch by inch it's a cinch" and "Character like embroidery is made stitch by stitch." as a close second.  Although "Time wounds all heels"  has certainly been relevant more than a few times over the years.

And it all came about because of this serenity prayer that I embraced very early in life.  I had it on my wall as a very young woman and it was the very first sampler I stitched in 1963....over a half century ago.  It has hung in a prominent position every single place I have lived since.  All my life I have had no problem with charging ahead changing things which often ends disastrously.... the hardest thing has always, always, always been accepting the things I cannot change. 

During my daughter-in-law's last visit she asked about what has been the guiding forces in my life and there has been just one..... this prayer.  It has become a mantra. This sampler will go to my second oldest granddaughter Leigha.

But this first sampler also led to my doing many other samplers but I was very selective.  It had to be an adage or proverb that I could really embrace. 

Gradually my collection grew until I had several dozen.  A few years ago I downsized and gave many away to family and friends and even still I have about 20 hanging in my living room...

The traditional sayings on samplers usually  express a common experience such as a short well-known saying containing a wise thought.

The dictionary defines adages/proverbs as brief statements which reflect commonly-held philosophical beliefs in a society. Because an adage has been passed down over time, it serves as a symbol  of collected and accepted wisdom. Adages provide us with simple guidelines with which to live.

A good example is a "Stitch in time, save nine" and one on this wall which is "It's nice to be important but more important to be nice." 

I just can't imagine not being surrounded by this collection but I'm going to give more away to grandchildren this winter... This one is going to my oldest granddaughter, Madison.  I stitched it in 1965 for her great-great grandmother... a strong Danish woman whom I adored.  When she passed her daughter gave it back to me to pass down in our family.  They are really hard to photograph because the glass reflects everything.

Some time back I stopped stitching new ones but I still occasionally pin one on a wall that speaks to me

and I have even painted them right on the wall..

 I have always been more focused on the message rather than the stitching but Sharon Boggon just recently posts a fascination history of embroidery samplers...

And even though I find it hard to believe a month has passed and it is time for eye injections again tomorrow... My bedroom is ready and I have books downloaded.  These injections  definitely fall in the category of things I cannot change and must accept.



Marilyn said...

I love the serenity prayer. It is a good rule to live by. I have never done samplers = all my cross stitch was pictures. I really used to enjoy it but had to give it up because of my wrists which is why I was really surprised that I could do the crazy quilting. But I am so thankful that I can. I have finished 3 more bird blocks in the last few weeks - only 4 more to go now. Your idea of the samplers with the sayings is really neat. Hope the fires aren't anywhere near you.

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Wow - how I would love to visit your house just to see those wonderful samplers. I really want to make one and hopefully will one day. Good luck with your eye treatment - so unfair to have to go through that so often.

chickadee04287 said...

Thanks for the inspiration. Love the quote about being flexible, definitely true!

Marlynne said...

I love samplers and have them displayed on my walls too! Not as many as you but I've enjoyed stitching them through the years. The last one was a kit we bought in England for our 50th wedding anniversary. The yarn was beautiful and it worked up great! We just celebrated our 61st anniversary Aug. 26th.

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