Tuesday, January 22

giving credit where it is due

Over the weekend we hosted a birthday celebration for our good friend, Becca.  Today is her actual birthday and I feel the need to do a bit of a shout out here in this space, for if it weren't for Becca I don't think I'd even have a blog.  Or the courage to sell the things I sew.  

Allow me to explain.  Becca was one of my first roomates out of college.  Three of us stuffed into an old, one-bedroom, one-half of a row home in the city.  I brought my bed, clothing and a coffee maker (where we eventually discovered a colony of cockroaches burrowed in its warm inner parts forcing us to mournfully toss it away).  But Becca.  She brought along the things that made it a home: her own marvelous pots & pans, spatulas & dish strainers.  She had furniture & curtains.  And a record player & lamps.  And perhaps most astounding of all to my recently-graduated-self: she knew how to cook food.  At first I shyly watched her cook from across the kitchen, slowly spooning cereal into my mouth that was mostly agape in wonder.  But it wasn't long before she was teaching me the ropes.

I have learned so many of the beautiful, wonderful things that I do regularly today from Becca:  how to live off of a CSA share, how to cook food, how to make yogurt, where to find beautiful thrifted stuff, how to spend a slow weekend morning drinking black tea and reading great magazines.  And perhaps most pertinent to this particular post, Becca was the first one to send me a link to a blog (and I mean the first blog I ever encountered).  And when I found myself sewing lots and sewing often, she was the one who asked me to post them to a blog where she could see them regularly and give some feedback.  That's how this here all began.
She too, finds herself succumbing to a variety of crafting urges and ideas, and her areas of expertise far exceed mine.  Recently, for example, she tried her hand at carving her own ink stamps.  She churned out approximately two shoe-boxes (maybe an exaggeration?) of some of the coolest/dearest stamps I've seen.  And then proceeded to stamp them with fabric ink onto cotton and gift them to me on my own birthday.  I'm sure you'll be seeing them in all kinds of stuff I sew in the near future (see above).
Wren soaking up all the attention from her 'uncles' Keith and Marten
Becca is full of ideas and has amazing taste.  She and her (kind, wonderful and very smart) husband, Marten drove the 2 hours from their place to our's with bags of food to be made and stacks of materials to be turned into garlands.  We visited the thrift shop, we cooked, we strung garlands, we walked, talked & danced a-plenty.  And of course we spent a lazy weekend morning slowly drinking black tea.

Ok, I should probably stop.  It's also true that Becca really doesn't like all this gushing and to have compliments hurled at her.  And she'll probably respond by hurling some swears at me.  But I think I can handle it.  I just think it's proper to give credit where it's due.  So happy birthday to a person who has taught me so very much!


  1. What a beautiful tribute. Can we also add copious amounts of Wendell Berry writings and Bob Dylan albums to the list of things brought to that half row house? Also, happy birthday, Becca!

  2. this brought tears to my eyes. it isn't often that i get to hear about the times in my sisters life that i didn't really know her. becca and i only got close after i graduated college. beautiful writing.

    and by any chance is your border for your blog a picture of the quilt that you and becca are sitting on? the fabrics remind me of that flannel denim quilt my mom made becca. so cute

    1. Sarah- I'd be glad to tell you all sorts of stories (heartwarming and otherwise :) to fill you in on those years after we graduated. Your sister has meant a lot to me and taught me a lot, it's true!

      Sadly the background for the blog is just a stock picture, but I know which denim quilt you're talking about. I didn't know that your mom made it. It's really beautiful.

    2. Mom did make it. And that one looks nothing like the border (just sayin').