Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Mandala XXVII

(Above:  Me and Mandala XXVII hanging on the garage door.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

Several weeks ago, I cut up this old, tattered pink-and-brown quilt into squares for future mandalas. I ended up with two large ones (finished!), two small ones (finished), and two medium sized ones.  This is the first of the two medium pieces.  There were two moments of pure serendipity that determined the objects on this one! 


(Above:  Donation from a cyber friend.)

First, a cyber friend sent me an entire shoe box of wooden thread spools.  She knew I transformed them into Christmas ornaments.  Some of these belonged to her mother's mother.  As much as I am in her debt for such a grand gift of thread spools, I was immediately taken by the antique mechanical compass that was also in the box.  Why a moment of serendipity?  Well, the delivery man brought the box just when I was stapling the medium-sized quilt section to its stretcher bar. At the time, I was thinking, "What will be a good focal point?  What unusual object should set this mandala apart?"  Then, I opened the box and found it!

(Above:  Mandala XXVII. 24" x 24". Found objects hand stitched to a section of an old pink-and-brown quilt. Objects include:  An antique mechanical compass, a clock gear, laminated Tampa Nugget cigar bands, buttons, metal picture framing hanging devices, paper fasteners, brass lamp fixtures, keys, and owl-eyed vintage paper clips.)

The other moment of serendipity was finding a Ziploc bag of Tampa Nugget cigar bands at a local antique house.  The whole bag set me back just four dollars.  I bought them, of course, because they are multiples.  I need multiples, but I can't really use "paper".  What was the moment of serendipity?  A framing client brought in an item for framing.  It had been laminated.  It didn't need glass; it was protected from the elements.  This was sort of a "dah" moment for me.  I realized that I could laminate the cigar bands!  They really could get appropriately stitched to a mandala.

(Above:  Some of the 390 laminated cigar bands.)

I went to FedEx Office.  The staff was very nice.  They provided me with the folded, letter-sized laminating sheets.  I sat at a cubicle and inserted three rows of thirteen cigar bands on ten sheets.  One by one, the staff put them through their machine.  Okay ... it took hours and hours to cut them all out, but it was worth it.  Putting a stitch directly through the lamination was next to impossible.  I used a hammer and nail to poke a tiny hole in each end of each cigar band ... but again ... it was worth it!

(Above:  Detail of Mandala XXVII.)

Needless to say, I have plenty more cigar bands for future mandalas.  I'm already stitching another circle on the next mandala.  After that ... well ... I hope a bit of serendipity comes into play again because I haven't found the next tattered quilt!  I'm sure it will come to me! (Fingers and toes are crossed.)

1 comment:

Catherine - Mixed Media Artist said...

Susan, you continue to amaze - where the keys are, the quilt underneath creates like windows at certain points - and as for the paper cigar bands - that's something else :-)