Visible Mending continues to bring joy to those who are familiar with it as a concept and practice and to newcomers. Yesterday I turned up at Creative Wellbeing Cumbria armed with enthusiasm, threads, needles and some examples of visibley mended cards – here’s some I made earlier (you know the routine). As usual, I share the story behind Visible Mending – and people always get it and seem touched by the idea that you can turn a potentially depressing experiencing into something that has led to rich connections across virtual and physical spaces. I share some of the photographs from the exhibitions and then people just get on with it. They choose a card and ponder how to stab holes or re-arrange the image.
Each session is very calming – there are stops and starts, sometimes for a cuppa and if you are lucky – a slice of cake. Some people just stop to have a think about what to stitch next or perhaps what to stick on the card or where to add just a tad of bling.
I enjoy having a look at how ideas are taking shape and seeing how the original card takes on a new life. One of the best bits for me are the surprises on the reverse sides of the cards –clear outlines of animals or flowers appear, wonderful mysterious handwriting.
The making is interspersed with shared conversations and sometimes a contented quietness descends over the group as people work together in quiet concentration.
Visible mending is a treasure I continue to enjoy in quiet moments alone and with others in shared spaces. You don’t need to go away to write or mend a postcard. Have a rummage around, find a card or old photo – make a cut, make a hole. Then stitch, collage and pin the new image together. I guarantee working with the image will take you some place new. You are of course most welcome to share your image with the travelling Visible Mending exhibition via Ms. Carol Parker.