Thursday, 11 February 2010

Keeping up

Anyone who reads here will know of my deep and abiding love and respect for old traditions, values and ways of doing things. However, I am regularly very grateful for living in the times that I do; any seeming to be longings of centuries ago living are not seen so much as a squint through rose coloured spectacles, but a hankering after a much simpler life - something I am constantly tryin to address. I am lucky to be able to take from the past and the present and meld it to suit myself, my beliefs and the way I live my life today. I am eternally grateful to be so lucky.
Having said how much I enjoy the traditional and historical, I also greatly enjoy some of the new and modern - again, I realise how lucky I am that I am able to choose which bits of "modern" I incorporate into my life.
I read a lot, mostly books - a mine of information, inspiration and ideas to go back to time and time again. However, I do like to keep up with new directions in the fields that interest me - knitting, food, gardening, crafts, etc. For this, I find the internet invaluable, and reading magazines. I have been chastised in the past by various people for buying "so many" magazines; I get a lot of enjoyment out of them read them several times over, keep the pertinent ones, or at least keep relevant pages/articles. They then get handed on to friends, to charity shops, etc for another round.
I think it's important to me to be interested in what's going on around me, even if it doesn't directly affect/involve me; I suppose having two teenagers helps a lot, as does an interest in politics and current affairs.
For instance, take knitting. My one and abiding passion is the traditional knitting of the British Isles.In recent years, this has been championed by knitters such as Alice Starmore - giving a new twist and vibrancy to older methods and traditional patterns and designs. While I love the "proper" Fairisle, I like some of the newer things that are appearing too. The likes of Ravelry and Knitty on the internet help to keep the interest alive, but make the knitwear relevant and appealing to those up and coming.
It's important to me that good information, inspiration and ideas don't get lost, and are handed down; keeping up with what the younger people and the wider world are doing is a way of disseminating such information and skills, advice and help.
As they say, the best way to conserve rare breeds is to eat them! :)
So - to make sure that traditional ways and values, crafts and information survive, they must be used and made relevant to those who will carry the flag forward into the future.
For me, this is a truth in all walks of life - growing food, cooking, all crafts, animal husbandry, wokring on the land, family life, community, soul and survival.

There is literally too much to lose if we don't engage those coming behind us.


Leanne said...

thoughtful and well written.I agree with you.

Leanne x

pattypan.2 said...

Well said Sarah; everything has its place and if the old skills are lost then that information is lost for generations. I have never been a knitter - my mother was- I can knit, but find more and more that I have simple things on the go with knitting and I often go to her for guidance - I am realising that I have a rich resource in this respect. Mum also does machine knitting. I too crave a simpler life - maybe one day it will happen - but at least we have free choice. We are indeed lucky

pattypan (aka Tricia)

aromatic said...

Beautifully written and most enjoyable to read.
Jane xxx