This morning I saw a post by Abby Franquemont who said (I paraphrase), when you are learning something new, or re-learning something you haven't done for a while, be prepared to 'suck'.
I think this is something that we, as a society, have forgotten. That *skilled* labour takes time and effort to learn. And while we learn, we are going to produce less than stellar results.
The photo is of the very first thing I ever wove on a floor loom.
But it did one critical thing for me. It showed me the potential involved in taking string (and in this case lowly rags) and turning them into something else.
I've written about the 'birth' of this rug elsewhere, so I won't repeat it here, but I have kept this rug for nearly 50 years. We don't use it. It doesn't lay flat, it's a bit of a trip hazard. But! It was, and is, the very first thing, the very first step, on my way to where I am now.
And sometimes I need a reminder. It marks one of the two points of my journey - the very first thing, and the latest thing I have woven.
It ties the journey together, much like ol whatshizname who took a ball of yarn into the labyrinth in order to find his way back to the start.
When I come across it - and I do, from time to time, it's just in my studio and I come across it now and then - I always pause for a moment. Sometimes I pick it up and open it. And I look at it. All the flaws. The lumps. The bumps.
And all of the potential contained in the effort that went into making it.
I still make mistakes. And I frequently share them here, because that's the thing, isn't it? We ALL make mistakes. We wind up with messes. Disappointing results.
The thing to remember is that we are not the sum of our mistakes. We are the sum of what we *learn* from our mistakes.
Making something that disappoints is, well, disappointing. But we can try again. And again. And multiple times, if necessary.
So, be not dismayed at mistakes. Learn from them. Make 'better' choices. Try, try, try again.
We are very close to launching my 'latest' book A Thread Runs Through It. This book talks a lot about my journey as a professional/production weaver. But mostly it is about the lessons I learned along that particular journey.