TIF Challenge June 1

I only started to think about Sharon’s June Take it Further Challenge a few days before the end of June. It’s about stashes, our collections of materials, the stuff of creation, how they comes with their own tales to tell, and how in using them we invest them with meanings old and new –  “stories that are and stories that are possible”.

I’ve always used the word material interchangeably with cloth, but I discovered recently that if you look up material in the O.E.D. cloth isn’t one of the definitions. Actually I read this in a post about material culture – textiles and technology on Alan’s blog, and didn’t believe it till I’d looked it up myself!

Stashes are made of things like cloth and fleece and thread and paper and buttons – and more – I loved reading Monika’s lyrical description, on her blog Red 2 White, of her stash that includes “nettle in the garden, gorse behind it … onion skins, shells from a beach”. 

And at the opposite extreme I’m remembering a phrase that has stayed with me since A level English Lit – “Extreme, material and the work of man” (Thom Gunn, writing about the city).

Stray thoughts… random snippets from my mental stash.

Material matters – I’d like to somehow celebrate the physicality of the stash, the embodiment of the story, the clothing of the idea in messy reality. All those little bits and pieces that make up our lives, collected here and there and spilling out of cupboards and boxes and jars, loved into order and relationship by the work of our hands and our heads and hearts.

And before the end of July, I hope!

stash