On our road trip to Detroit and Cleveland a few weeks ago, Batman and I listened to an audio book called The Indigo Girl, by Natasha Boyd. Historical fiction, it tells the story of Eliza Lucas, a 16 year old girl, who in 1739 was thrown into the midst of great responsibility and challenge. Perhaps even more fascinating than the story, were the author's notes at the end, describing the true life account of this remarkable woman. Eliza Lucas Pinckney became a woman of great distinction in the history of South Carolina. I recommend it as a wonderful read (or listen).
And, yes, indigo is one of the main characters. :-)
MICRO:I've been puttering with some ideas of what to do with my 63rd year. I've been brainstorming about items I might craft, sourced from our "bit of earth" here in central Vermont. These balsam sachets, stitched with some of my own indigo dyed linen are easy to make, it's the prep work that takes patience. The balsam boughs need to be harvested, and left in a sunny and dry place to cure. Then the needles need to be stripped from the branches (with gloves on!). The indigo seedlings need to be purchased, planted, tended and then harvested. Then there's "dye day", which turned out to be a disappointing flop last year (yes, I know, I never wrote about it because it broke my heart). Once all of that is done, cutting out the squares, stitching them and filling them with balsam needles seems like child's play.
MACRO:This week is Fashion Revolution Week, marking the 5th anniversary of the factory collapse at Rana Plaza in Bangladesh, which killed 1,138 garment workers. From the website, "we encourage millions of people to ask brands #whomademyclothes and demand greater transparency in the fashion supply chain." It's been eye opening to see so many wonderful posts over on Instagram, bringing attention to how we source our clothing and the fabric and yarns we buy as crafters. Local, sustainably sourced and fairly priced items invite us to consider multiple bottoms lines. Fair compensation and decent working conditions for those who stitch our factory made clothes are also part of the story.
There are many ways to take action, follow the link above to find what might work for you.
With appreciation and gratitude.