Greetings from the farm,
Although I am somewhat anxious about the days ahead and my children settling into new adventures around the world, I am buzzing with creativity and curiosity for time spent making and digging deeper into new learning in the months to come.
An opportunity to get back to my roots - connecting tradtional textile art, history and journal writing.
As it is the end of the month and time to turn the page - to reflect and to start a new knitting bag book journal, I thought I would share about a recent course offering I held locally and a new direction with my daily journaling ritual.
For the past three weekends, I have had the absolute pleasure of facilitating a historic journaling course in the city, connected to my recent certification, with supplies from a beautiful local shop Abby's Tekstiler.
(My knitting bag book journaling idea, but from a more traditional, 19th century, handmade perspective.)
These courses were a unique experience to facilitate - as they were meant to focus on team building and mental health journaling techniques for the participants, who all had limited experience as makers or participation in creative outlets. Most of their making experience was in elementary school.
But, as we all know - making, the act of creating and all forms of art - promote community, self-care and confidence - whether you are a hand maker or not.
It was rewarding to witness the happiness and relaxation, that time spent actively creativing in community could bring to those not used to engaging in making.
Journaling and journals have existed since the middle ages, but it wasn't until the 19th century that we begin to see individuals and families, collecting and preserving mementoes and recording important information, reflecting upon their everyday lives and their families.
Indeed, the first evidence of 19th century journals were actually family bibles.
But, during the late 1800s we see journaling expand to ledgers, as well as, small handmade and bound books. (Even some very small journals were tucked into historic pockets, as we have read.)
As print and printing companies emerged, beautiful illustrations and designs adorned calling cards, postcards and advertisements and these pieces were saved and tucked into a journal, along with personal reflections. They added beauty and colour to the page.
Beautiful examples of 19th century journals from hand makers have been preserved, as artifacts, in local museums here in Norway. These journals include colourful samples of hand embroidery, fabric and knitting swatches, sketches of patterns and design ideas - together with personal anecdotes, daily reflections - quotes and prayers.
Some of my favourite of these journals is, of course, from Selbu and the small Selburose sketch books preserved from village farms.
The handmade journal is the center piece of extending my historic, turn of the century, restoration project - which at the moment is also focused on traditional pockets and woven bands.
Norway has a very rich and interesting tradition of journaling. Another of my favourite local journaling traditions is the "hyttebok"....cabin journal.
Above you can see examples of my hard and soft bound, handmade journaling projects from my recent course offering.
(I am just finishing up the soft bound piece to the right, it is still a work in progress.)
These are my sensommer (late summer) knitting bag books.
I will not only continue my daily journal reflections and rituals, as I have shared many times within our community -- but I will return this autumn, to include the act of engaging in creating - using a variety of mediums and expressions of my making, each day within the pages.
I will also offer several one-of-a-kind, handmade journals within my farm shop during Autumn.
I have several, beautiful, besoke pieces in the works, all focused on and featuring vintage, traditional, Norwegian håndverk/håndarbeid (handwork).
I will also open up for commissioned, personalized handmade journals and knitting bag books. Just contact me directly with interest.
If you are joining into my historic restoration project - reading The Pocket and possibly creating your own historic pocket and other 19th century restoration pieces - you will also have the opportunity to see several short VLOGS of my journaling and creative process - taking everyday items and translating them to reflect my days here on the farm.
I hope they will inspire you and your knitting bag book journaling routine.
I will also have another Pocket Project update very soon!
And finally, if there is interest in learning to create and engage with your own handmade journal made completely from free, recycled and found materials around the home do let me know!
I would be very pleased to offer the course, that I have developed, online this autumn, with interest.
Have a wonderful new week and enjoy your making!
Warmest regards from the farm,