23 November 2011

Every button tells a story



When my daughter, who had just turned 20, started this beautiful button knit, she was a happy and healthy textile student at Central St Martins College in London. She had just started to specialize in knit, when she was struck down with glandular fever. At the same time a close friend died suddenly, in tragic circumstances, and the combination of the two had a drastic effect on her health. She had to put her university life on hold, give up her East End student home and return to live with us to recover. She spent most of the past winter in bed and was diagnosed as having ME symptoms and a gluten/wheat intolerance. This was the turning point on her slow road to recovery.

This knit piece was created using two mop handles. The buttons were from a collection my own mum had gathered over the years. So many childhood memories in the button tin, my mum left behind when she died 17 years ago. At times my daughter was so unwell she couldn’t lift the knitting needles; there were months on end where her joints were so painful that it was impossible to do anything, even lift a paint brush. It's been a long year but Cally is now back on the road again, so finishing this piece was very significant and symbolic. Taking it to the framers was like letting go of a period of time. She is doing a silk screen printing course and a fashion course at London College of Fashion, preparing herself to return to the “full on” creative hub that is Central St Martins. She currently has a broken wrist but after the year she has had, it doesn't hold her back.

My beautiful girl @callyhearts


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