One of the nice things about having talented and creative friends is that not only do you have many opportunities to learn from them, but you also reap the benefits of their talents in very in your hand tangible ways.
One such artist friend is Linda Stuelke from Willow Rock Designs. Linda and I met a few years ago at a workshop and have been fast friends (I love that old fashioned phrase!) ever since we started talking and realized that I was living in an apartment she had lived in years before!
We don't see one another enough, but we do manage to get together for coffee or chai once in awhile. These visits are usually long (as in many hours) and we cover personal news, art talk, our projects and bounce ideas off of one another.
Linda is one of my most technically skilled friends, but she is self-taught and her studio (particularly) the metal area knocks me out. Her work has featured in many shops and even in Better Homes & Gardens magazine. She's one of the most generous artists I know.
On one of our recent visits Linda presented me another of her hand forged metal Word for the Year pins. Choosing a word for the year is an important ritual for me. I never consciously choose, the word just comes. Last year's word was Purge and this year's word is Practice.
This year she hand stamped the back with the year! What a great way to honor the timeline of our words and to preserve them. Of course, she had to stamp last year's word too! I am not a big pin wearer, so I was thrilled to realize that I can display them by hanging them on little tacks on a small section of wall between rooms!
I like seeing my words lined up! You could also pin yours to a gorgeous length of ribbon and eventually you'd have a wonderful heirloom...imagine an adult child or grandchild holding the ribbon and looking at the progression of words that were important to you...maybe seeing what your word was the year they turned ten, twelve or seventeen? Sigh. Love it.
I wanted to share these because I know many of you have words for the year too and if you don't...well, it is not too late. Plus, she can also do children's names, initials, anniversary hearts and so much more. All of her metal is upcycled and hand forged.
I love how she thinks and I love her generosity and willingness to share her talents with me. I'm already thrilled with my burgeoning collection and cannot wait to see what word comes to me next year!
These are nice gifts to friends you want to honor because of an achievement or strength....words like survivor, sister, 5k, healer and so many more come to mind.
I hope you will check out her shop and also start pondering what your might be...or, if you had a word in January and need a little reminder of how important it was to you....this is a nice way to put it on the front burner again!
I wish I could show you...
when you are lonely or in darkness, the astonishing light of your own being.