Self portrait as a chair
There are many things we buy that make us look good but only those things we truly love make us feel authentic.
This is my chair for every meal I eat at the kitchen table. It wasn't designed for a kitchen. Its carved back, too fussy for daily use, had to be repaired several times. And I finally re-upholstered the seat cushion with a good piece of light green embroidered linen.
I embroidered the cushion with a motif of my own design, inspired by the traditional Celtic hare. I was born in the year of the rabbit and always had a fondness for them.
I protected the linen and embroidery work with a thin layer of Scotch Guard but the chair won't stay protected for long. For one thing, I eat a slice of bread at every meal. The bread leaves crumbs that I brush off the seat, always in the same pattern, from back to front. In a year, or two, or three, the embroidery will wear out in the spot where my hand rubs off the thread. And the linen will eventually sag under my weight. And I will probably drop a dollop of raspberry jam or a chicken bone or butter on that chair.
This is all temporary. Eventually, the wooden chair frame or its linen seat will need to be repaired and renewed. The next incarnation of the chair won't look like this one because in a year or two or three, I will not be the same person that I am now. I am o.k. with that.
And finally, don't get me wrong: not every chair in my house is hand-embroidered and miraculously intentional and beautiful. There is a time and place for everything. In fact, I think fewer special objects get more of the attention their deserve. I like my special objects to be well made, handmade and loved to the last bit.
I hope you do too. I hope you too surround yourself with things that make you feel special and rooted in this world. Make your nest, take in the beauty and enjoy.