Friday, February 06, 2009

Dedication to my Grandmother

I got an Etsy Treasury today and dedicated it to my grandmother Irma. You can see the Treasury HERE. (If you aren't familiar with Treasuries, they are like miniature curated exhibits of items available on Etsy with a unified theme or concept that have an exhibit time of about 2 days).

My grandmother and I had a very special bond in the ten years we were blessed with to get to know and love each other. She passed away over twenty years ago but her spirit and memories of our time spent together are still ever so close to my heart. Each of these items tell a bit of a story about her and our cherished time together.

House Dress from Retrogirlgypsyarchade

Even just around the house, my grandmother always looked beautiful. She had an eye for fashion and an understated style that was smart, graceful and flattering to her tall, elegant frame.

Milk Glass Creamer from beautifulvintage

My grandmother had a collection of milk glass pitchers, vases and candy dishes. They were stored in the pantry on shelves that caught the light streaming in through one window. My favorite view of the pantry was when the forsythia was blooming outside and the light created colorful shadows on the white milk glass, crystal and drinking glasses.

Vintage Radio from desertnana

This was included because I have fond memories of dancing around the kitchen standing on my grandfather's feet to big band jazz playing on a old radio in the room. I see my grandmother cooking or preparing a meal laughing and smiling at us. There was so much love in that house.

Wren Art Print from laurascstudio

My grandmother was an amazing artist. She painted in oils and watercolor paint and birds were a favorite subject. This piece reminds me of her delicate touch and natural palette.

Vintage Buttons from 5dollarfrenchmarket

Grandma's button box was a treasure trove! I didn't have any projects in mind, I just loved looking over every single unique button in the box. Some were carved, some had sparkle, some were plain but just the most beautiful colors you'd ever seen.

Pyrex Tea Cups from muchodesign

These are the EXACT same tea cups (and full dinner set) that are still in my grandfather's house for daily use! So many cups of coffee and tea have filled these cups with so many stories exchanged between family.

Vintage Blouse from savoybetty

I spoke earlier about my grandmother's classy and keen fashion sense. Feminine and sophisticated and this lovely blouse is a good example of that. She was so humble and from what my mother has told me, really never understood how beautiful she was. But I looked at her and I saw a glamorous woman, a movie star. Pictures of her when she was young with her jet black hair, dark eyes and high Hungarian cheekbones made me dream of looking like her when I grew up.

Set of Handkerchiefs from jenscloset

In the bedroom my mother and one of her sister's shared growing up was an old vanity with drawers that were revealed when you opened the front doors of the vanity. It was a curious and beautiful little piece of furniture (and it makes sense now that I was as interested as I was in furniture then - after all, furniture can be a work of art too). My hands would follow the curves of the dainty piece and I'd arrange still lives of assorted objects on the table top. Inside the drawers was a collection of handkerchiefs. Some pure lace, others embroidered, and many handmade by my grandmother or others in the family. The tiny details pleased me then and now.

Watercolor Rose Print from doodlebirdie

Another popular subject that she painted was flowers, most often displayed in one of her vases as a still life on a doily. I chose this piece because sometimes she would do simple studies of an individual sprig much like a painting of a bird on a limb. I also chose this piece because she took such good care of her roses and all of her gardens. She might have thought of herself as a black eyed susan or some other common wildflower - I will always think of her as a prize winning rose.

Vintage Ceramic Planter from susantique

This sweet little planter is another object of interest I can imagine stumbling upon during an afternoon with Grandma. Of course, there would be a violet or spider plant blooming in the middle. It also reminds me of my mom and her two sisters - this is something they could own as well. I love it.

Vintage Tea Cup from EmilyLynch

One of my favorite ways to help Grandma around the house was dusting. It wasn't hard when she kept the house so well maintained! My absolute favorite thing to dust was a display shelf of her finest tea cups in the living room. I would zone in and tediously take each piece off of the multi tiered shelf, dust, and then zen-like replace them as she had them displayed, tweaking things just a bit, maybe giving one tea cup a little more of the spot light than another. This prized tea cup reminds me of some in her collection - I remember wondering "Is that REAL gold!?".

Tobacco Barn ACEO Print from Lynxes123

My grandparent's lived on a multi generational tobacco farm. I mentioned birds and still lives already in Irma's painting repertoire. The other subject she liked to paint were landscapes that were familiar to her, most often with some form of architecture included. Barns, local churches or covered bridges in Vermont from their fishing trips together were common subjects. I love this painting because it captures the glow from inside the barn when the burners are going to dry the harvest. It also reminds me of a specific barn on the farm that is next to a tree (like the painting) that has the best grape vines on it. Grandpa would pull up "Big Red" so we could all stand on the back of the truck and pick grapes for homemade wine. I should take a picture of that barn so you can see just how close this painting is to that scene. I love it.

I so enjoyed creating this and connecting with my memories. I love you, Grandma. You are always and in all ways with me.


T.Allen said...

What a beautiful tribute post and treasury. Like your art, your fondest memories of your grandmother resonate with me. Just today, I told my daughter that I wanted to make it home from our shopping trip in time to call my grandmother. She asked, "Why?" I replied, "because-she's cool!". An understatement at best, grandmothers, are a special blend of mother and friend.

Unknown said...

What a beautiful story to be shared... thank you Tameka.

Maggie Neale said...

Hi Jessica...finding my way to your blog from flickr. Revisited a painting of yours that you presented after a dream and found this address, like a calling card. I am touched by your memories of your grandmother. I also cherish the treasures of my grandmother around me whether in actuality or in my memories. She revisited in your images.

L'Adelaide said...

what lovely memories you have and they have jogged my own~thank you!