Once upon a time in the nineties, I went to visit my brother who was studying in Boston. One day he took me out of the Tufts campus for a tour of the city. As we went around, he pointed out different features and details of interest. One of these was a car. 'This' he declared 'is the stereotypical car of a Greek American. As you can see, it is a BMW, and if you have a closer look, you will see that dangling from the rear view mirror is a cross and a protective eye.' Wow. Nineteen year old me was appalled at the uncoolness of it all. I was particularly offended by the eye. Why did they have to hang it there? Were they afraid that everyone would be jealous of their fancy pants car? I felt full of disdain and above it all.
So its been a few years since then. And I seem to have developed a strange fascination with the eye or mati to use the greek. It was one of the first things I tried to make as a newbie embroiderer. I was not pleased with the outcome. I moved on. And that was the end of my career as a mati maker. No! Here I am again. But why?
There are two Australian blogs that I just love. One is Discount. The other is Swallow Glitter. Their aesthetics make me catch my breath. And with eyes peering out at you from the screen in all the colours of the rainbow, I couldn't help but give it one more try...
This time around I thought it would be a breeze. But I struggled with the metallic and flouro thread. And with my abilities. How could I ever have judged somebody else's taste? This is rubbish. I can't do this. I was casting the evil eye on my evil eye...
So it took ages to finish and a part of me didn't want to blog about this one. But, having struggled with some demons in the stitching of this hamsa hand+eye I felt the need to discuss. Embroidery is like yoga, an exercise in self-scrutiny. Even if the outcome isn't so great, its all worth it for the things you learn. I realised how much I appreciate all the amazing art we get to look at on the internet and how grateful I feel for it being there. If you can, do spare the time to browse the links I have in this post and those on the right under stitchy blog love. Each and every one of these blogs is a gem. I dedicate my protective eye to all of them.
As for the finished product, Kimona loved it. I want it in my room mummy! he said as soon as I finished. Elias photographed it hanging in its place.
XStitch Magazine Issue 3 – Space
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