Saturday, December 01, 2007

on the first day of Christmas

Deryn Mentock put together a 12 days of Christmas ornament group each person created 12 ornaments kept one for them self's and sent out 11.
each girl was given a date and we had to mark are number (date) on the package so we knew what one to open first :)

so over the next 12 days I will share with you my packages as I open them!

(my pile of artful gifts just waiting to bust out of there wrapping!)

Ruth Rae (who is that girl!?)
is lucky # 1 and this is what she (I) did for the group
(I used felt as a outer wrapper and Jute upholstery webbing, I created small little pillows and added some lavender and fastened it all up with a safety pen)

growing up with a o-baa-chan (Japanese for grandma) in the house not only lead to hearing Japanese folk tales (Momotaro ,The Peach Boy was my favorite!) But there were always amazing packages to behold! When it comes to Japanese gifts, it's not the inside that really counts!
Gift-wrapping, called tsutsumi is the most important part of the gift-giving it seems. How you wrap and tie the package is considered especially symbolic and carries a lot of expression about how one feels towards the person.

(once the outer wrapper is removed a sewn layer of wax paper and sheet music holds a stamped feather my calling card along with a little story about the first day of Christmas)

The wrapping of the gift is seen as being part of the entire gift experience, with the opening and revealing of the contents viewed as one complete experience.

(You must tear the layers to revel the gift)

and now as a artist I find that when I create its always about all the tiny little details and when I wrap I take to heart the soul of the gift within~

oh my what can it be!? its a partridge of course!

(Here are all 12 before it was time for them to fly away all over the USA!)

Would you like to see the details?

it all started with this pile of altered coffee stained fabrics along with layers of vintage papers, lace and felt that I cut stiched and stuffed with love.
(click on the images to view details)

one side has the word "life" on its wing that is hand stitched on to the bird so the wings move!

the other wing says "art"

here is a view of the under layer of the bird she has some lace and sheet music along with a few other elements trapped between the layers.
this is the story that put in my package about the partridge:

"The Twelve Days of Christmas" was written in 15th century England as one of the "catechism songs" to help young Catholics learn the tenets of their faith. The songs gifts are hidden meanings to the teachings of the faith. The "true love" mentioned in the song doesn't refer to an earthly suitor, it refers to God Himself. The "me" who receives the presents refers to every baptized person. The partridge in a pear tree is Jesus Christ, the Son of God. In the song, Christ is symbolically presented as a mother partridge which feigns injury to decoy predators from her helpless nestlings, much in memory of the expression of Christ's sadness over the fate of Jerusalem:
"Jerusalem! Jerusalem! How often would I have sheltered thee under my wings, as a hen does her chicks, but thou wouldst not have it so..." (Luke 13:34)

(close up detail of wing)

Please enjoy this first day of Christmas
Tomorrow I will share with you Crystals gift!
I can not wait to open it!



calamitykim said...

WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh, my beating heart! What a lovely partridge and unwrapping experience. How lovely. How comforting. The joy! Thank you for sharing this. I will be back to see each unveiled! I cannot wait! I am blogging a link if you don't mind. Happy First Day of Christmas.

Waltraud said...

Thanks for your pictures and thoughts!


this is ssooo lovely Ruth, i love the whole wrapping, thats the best part of giving gifties i think :))
Beautiful partridge, he is devine!!!!

kelly snelling said...

you're the best-est girl ever! thank you again and again. if i had two of these you know i'd wear them as earrings! xoxoxo-k

Evoke-Designs by Lorraine said...

Ruth, your ornament is very special and lovely. You put a lot of thought into this lovely little partridge... Everyone will really cherish it!

Elizabeth said...

You never cease to amaze!!! I love hearing about the wrapping tradition from the Japanese Tradition, it just makes the gift so much more special!!!
I will be following you along each day!!
I simply adore Mr. Partridge!!!

Xanthe said...

Your partridges blow me away!!!
Wow what lucky swap mates!

If you haven't looked at it already you may enjoy the projects in this book: Omiyage : Handmade Gifts from Fabric in the Japanese Tradition by Kumiko Sudo

I've only made the butterfly so far

kecia said...

oh, the birdie is too cute! now Ruth, please make some more and put in your etsy shoppe because i am a bird nerd and want one for myself!

JoAnnA Pierotti said...

oH Dear Sweet Ruth,
Your labor of love will not go un-noticed. Indeed it has touched eleven hearts and I'm sure many more who view this post and our posts. I'm feeling like I'm winning the lottery receiving these amazing ornaments. But even bigger than the lottery win is having you and the girls in my life, right now. I thank you for your encouragement and love. Your ornament will always remind me to give to others the best gift of

sammy said...

Ruth I love your bird ornaments! And thanks for sharing how you made them.... I so enjoy your thoughts and phases you post, makes your blog so personal... You are such a inspiration to me...

ominnimo said...

Your bird ornaments are stunning. I love them!

Ruth Rae said...

Thank you all!
I am so happy that you all like my partridges!
I had been admiring other's soft sculptured birds online and wanted to somehow make it my own.
I had my doubts as I was making them but it all turned out in the end somehow.

catharinas-love said...

Lovely ornaments , love them !