Saturday, December 12, 2009

St. Rose and her Pinking Shears

OK, let me explain.

I was having a hard time with the pink theme. Don't like pink. I started working on a design for a little pink house, but I did not like the design. I went to bed one night feeling anxious about my pink quilt, feeling feverish and sniffly and I didn't sleep well, but when I did sleep I had some pretty strange dreams. In one of my more vivid dreams a face from a quilt I made several years ago appeared. It was a quilt called "Patron Saint" and it was a saintly figure holding a pair of scissors. Since I love scissors, collect old scissors and think they are the best tool ever invented, I have adopted my little saint and she hangs on the wall and watches over me as I sew.

In my dream the scissor saint had come to life. She held up her scissors and said, "you know, I have pinking shears too." And, indeed, the shears in her hand were not regular scissors but pinking shears. PINKing shears—get it?? Doesn't the brain go to interesting places when we are asleep? It was, of course, my devious subconscious attempting to skirt the actual color pink and come up with a tricky device. But, once awake, my rational brain said, "No. This is a color challenge, not a word challenge." Still, having gone to all the trouble of informing my dream, I decided St. Rose (as I was now calling her) and her pinking shears deserved a place on the final piece and she would just have to be dressed in pink to make it all work. So here she is. She does look a bit pained by her pink attire, don't you think?

And just to further explain—I am not Catholic, but I have a small fascination with saints. I think it may have started when I had my tonsils out in a Catholic hospital at age 5. The nun who took care of me told me that my name was the name of her favorite saint, St. Teresa of the Roses, and that was quite a special name to possess. As an avid childhood reader I went through of phase of reading biographies of saints and sobbing through The Song of Bernadette. I love the Byzantine icon images of saints and have emulated that stylized, flat style for a lot of my work. I started calling my piece St. Rose simply because of the pink color connection. Then I Googled to discover the real St. Rose of Lima, the first saint in the new world, and was quite surprised to find that she is a patroness of embroiderers and lacemakers and supported her family as a teenager with her exquisite needlework.

Do you see a similarity between my St. Rose and this one? I did not find this image until after my piece was finished.

13 comments:

Gerrie said...

So very Terry. I had not thought of pinking shears. Love it. I like that you have used that orange. I like a little orange with my pink. You will add some zest to our mosaic.

Diane said...

Oh! Terry! This is gorgeous on so many levels! I love the piece on its own -- your wonderful style and detail and color and fabric choices ... all truly delightful. And I've always had a love of pinking shears (I played with my grandma's in her sewing room as a kid and have loved them ever since) so this strikes a happy chord for me.

But the various ways this intersects with your life are really fascinating. Saint Rose sounds like someone you need (or maybe have had?) in your life! I'm so I'm glad you brought her to life!

Kristin L said...

I love this Terry. I'm so happy that you took the challenge beyond the color into a word challenge as well, and I am always appreciative when the medium supports the message. What better subject for a quilted piece than a Saint of Scissors!? What a pleasant surprise too that the real St. Rose also has a connection to textile arts.

Terri Stegmiller said...

Oh Terry, I'm enamored with your quilt. The design is what grabbed me to begin with and then the color combination you've used are next. Love it!!!

Anonymous said...

This is wonderful, I love your quilt; and the play on words. Congratulations.

kirsty said...

She is beautiful. And the orange is perfect. I love the connections here and - pinking shears! Of course! It was real forehead slap moment when I read this post

Debra said...

Just dynamite!

Anonymous said...

St. Rose of Lima is my confirmation saint.

Françoise said...

This is beautiful. I liked reading the story of your dream. I also had a dream this time about my 12x12 quilt, but there was no saint in it!

Susan Brubaker Knapp said...

I'm not Catholic, but I've always been interested in Catholic and other religious icons, and the Russian triptychs. I love the big candles in the jars they sell in the Mexican food section of my grocery store, too... the ones with the saints and religious photos on them.

Your Saint Rose is marvelous!

Karen said...

My friend Shari was sitting next to me when I opened this and she just about fell off her chair, and I agree, this is so fabulous. The pinking shears are perfect, and it is just so vibrant and actually glows!

Anonymous said...

Dear Terry,
I am Catholic, and I love St. Rose and Her Pinking Shears! The little carnation flowers called pinks got their name from the zigzag edges of their petals; I think the color name came from that. Carnation flowers were originally sort of a peachy-pink color like skin--Incarnation meaning "to become flesh". A strange but interesting trip.
Thanks for sharing,
Linda Laird
quiltlady@san.rr.com
PS: St Rose of Lima is often shown in pictures or statues playing the guitar!

Sandy said...

I love this Terry,
I think it is great. I did Lady Sew and Sew based on Medieaval Tapestries somewhat like the Bayeaux Tapestry. this reminds me a bit of the ideas I had with that.

I also think your St Rose looks like an updated St Rose of Lima. Or at least her daughter! The facial features are so similar.

I laughed at your comment about the pained expression of wearing the pink clothes (how I would feel!) but I also think it looks like she is holding up the pinking shears with a face that looks as if she just discovered someone had "borrowed" them to cut paper!

Again, this is very wonderful. A great way to "redeem" pink so to speak!
Sandy in the UK