Pondering embroidery faith

Over and under. Over and through, then through and under. Over the river and through the hoop. The K-2 kids are stitching, and it's a wonderful way to improve eye-hand coordination, spatial awareness, and spatial vocabulary.

We've been attaching all sorts of groovy stuff to pieces of net, so that stitches above and below are all visible. I've stabilized the net creations on felt squares. Some items sewn to the net are now sandwiched between the net and the felt.

The kids got to choose from a wide range of items to stitch onto the netting:

metallic punch ribbon
weird hardware
laminated pressed leaves and postage stamps
playing cards
pipe cleaners
sari fabrics
Formica samples
paper clips
jingle bells
cut up promotional credit cards

They chose their own path for the yarn and thread.

While their beginnings were fairly random, the next step will include compositional development, and greater fine motor control. Back in the early Sixties kids developed the same skills by solving dot-to-dot puzzles and "sewing" shoestrings through lacing cards. Somehow we arrived at the point where we could poke a needle up through fabric exactly where we wanted to start our embroidery.

How do we acquire that ability, that confidence that our brain won't let our hand below the fabric prick the hand above the fabric? Back in the Sixties we knew the danger of pricking your finger on a spindle. No bibbity bobbity boo for you!

These days with my old lady eyes trying to thread needles I have to rely on an internal sense. Maybe it is faith. Watching the kids wield their needles, "conviction of things not seen" popped into my head. Hope over, under, and through the net held in the hoop... Satisfying inner awareness without hope of Disney princess marketing tie-ins at Burger King.

Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

© 2007 Nancy L. Ruder

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