my mom the weaver:
Mother's Day Reflections on Art and Patience
photos & text by: Red House WestOn a recent visit to my parents' house, surrounded by beautiful things made by my mother, I reflected on how the skills that make her an incredible artist are also those that make her such an incredible mom. Decades before the rise of online tutorials and endless hacks and DIYs, my mom became a weaver. It was a time when if you wanted to learn a new skill you either had to take a class from real live humans, buy a book from an actual store, or spend thousands of hours figuring it out on your own. Weaving takes patience: my mom says that she spent more time in planning and setting up her loom than in actually shuttling the weft.
Despite the patient artistry that went into each rug, my mom wasn’t too precious about them. They withstood decades of abuse from kids and pets, and still look fresh and vibrant all these many years later. A true testament to the longevity of beautiful and lovingly made home goods!
I get my sense of color and style from my mom, but I have only scant traces of her artistry and diligence. Sometimes when I'm flitting from one online tutorial to the next, I picture my mom sitting at her loom, 10,000 hours well behind her, enjoying the satisfaction that must accompany mastery. While I am proud of my craft-skill arsenal, my mom and her weavings inspire me to slow down, to spend more time on preparation and planning, and to enjoy the process instead of only the results. Happy Mother's Day!