A Patch Work Life: The Hands On Guide To Living Piece By Piece

Voluminous layers
Countless hues and values
Embedded with meaning
Personal herstory
Minuscule patches that speaks volumes
Ensconcing with warmth and protection
Hand Stitched patterns
Endless sizes, shapes and forms
Piecing, Stitching, Darning, Mending, Ripping

Producing Quilts:
The next one is always better than the one before
Organized cutting and construction steps
Staying at the machine until the entire set is pieced
Process over product
Creating something original comes unexpectedly without planning

Memory Quilts:
One little patch tells its own story
Stains and holes add meaning
Satisfies individual needs for healing
Can heal through past, present and future

Essence of Me:
Strong family ties
Thinking outside the box
A little ahead and to the left
Reticent to get involved yet too quick to jump in
Problem solver, looking for practical solutions
Transforming continually from being to doing and back again
Compelling deep connection with spirit
Big heart
Gestalt, big picture thinker
Direct understanding derived through personal experience

Being Prolific:
Always have the next step ready to go before stopping
Use idle time to think through ideas
Keep the materials organized, separated by type, easily accessible
Prepare the leftovers as you go
Having enough materials on hand for alternative options
Constant desire to create something new
Great outlet for compulsive behavior

Being in Relationship:
A constant search for the balance of together and alone
Prioritize its importance and give it its due
Eating meals together, getting up and going to bed at the same time
When feeling criticized step back to understand what is behind the statement
Instead of over reacting, stop, feel, find a reaction that is soft, positive and personal
When the reasons are not clear for an action, stop and ask why
Never make assumptions
Express needs, concerns, feelings openly
Step away as needed
Support the other person’s effort to be independent and responsible in other relationships
Maintain a sense of humor

Forms of Anxiety:
Fear of making a mistake
Fear of not knowing enough
Not feeling good enough
Negative and faulty beliefs about self
Lack of trust
What is unknown or not understood

Self-care enables care of others
Untold life rewards
The truest meaning of instinct
Contributes to life purpose

Quality sleep is the backbone
Overcoming food likes, obsessions, cravings is a lifelong challenge
Aging gracefully requires a real commitment to keeping physically active
See who is in the mirror
The stillness of meditation shows the way
Anything can be a spiritual practice
Change is the only constant
Quality over quantity
Identifying and feeling emotions allows for flow
Ask questions and apply critical thinking

Life Goals:
Die with awareness
Give up judgement
Combat prejudice, promote diversity, advocate social justice
Do things that bring happiness
Listen carefully and speak from the heart

Published by SilkQuilt

Pittsburgh-based fiber artist, Louise Silk, creates art that combines aesthetics and functionality with meaning and memories. From the influence of a 1972 MS Magazine article to the current SILKDENIM label, her quilt experiences culminate in a display of her particular capacity to use her patchwork skills to piece together just about anything into an aesthetic meaningful whole.

4 thoughts on “A Patch Work Life: The Hands On Guide To Living Piece By Piece

  1. Thank you, Louise, for a lovely wake-up read.

    Your thoughtfulness and self-revealing words inspire me to do and be more of my authentic self.

    Only one word jarred. The word is too.

    Hope to see you next week.



  2. I just love this post, and the photos that went with it. So many things resonated for me….I could write down a dozen of your thoughts on an index cards to tape to my bathroom mirror. Instead, I’ll make it simple and just hold on to the one that is closest to my heart right now….”Aging gracefully requires a real commitment to keeping physically active”….and keep it top of mind as my husband and I get acclimated to our new lives in Boulder, Colorado, where we moved last week to create our post-retirement chapter. Thanks!


  3. You are magnificent!
    Poem is complete in my knowing you

    Inspired by your thoughtful thoroughness
    Feel close to you by feeling your vulnerability, intelligence and humor

    I see the light in your eyes when you smile
    Grateful you remain in my life.


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