who needs patterns?


Last week a screw-up I made in a vest I was knitting became a gaping eyesore so I eliminated it by cutting it out and re-designing the bottom half of the piece.  It took several tries until I got the result I wanted, but in the end I was happier with the finished product than if the pattern had been followed flawlessly.

The guts to do this with anything I take on in life came from my mother Rosemary. 

Rose never follows patterns. 

And her creations outshine anything you can buy off the shelf or order from the menu.  Just ask my dad.   His standard reply, “your mother can make it better” applies to just about anything, and has stood for the last 48 years.

Rose turns 70 today and in her honor, I share a list of just a few of the things she’s “made better” for all the people in her life … 

… elaborate schemes for hosting the best neighborhood summer carnivals, bottomless tubs of her famous version of Chex Mix, a hand-drawn Santa Clause cut from colored paper and hung in our window at Christmastime, millions of kind hand-written words of praise and comfort, knitted stuffed bears that might resemble gangsters or ballerinas, a makeshift hospital tent and nurse and doctor uniforms,  the pumpkin lady costume I wore in first grade, faux suede fringy vests, pajamas for my pee wee dolls to match my own, Mr. Bubble birthday pool parties …

Ranging from the wacky to the exquisite, the list goes on and on and on and on.  Just as she will in my heart. 

Happy 70th birthday mom!  I love you!

Author: Julie Ann Stevens

My art flows from the patterns & paths of my lived experience which ⏤ like yours ⏤ are at once deeply personal and entirely universal.

One thought

  1. Grandma is awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She has made so many stuffed animals, ponchos, tweety birds(the first one looked like a bowling pin) she tries and tries and even though she makes a mistake its still good. (1 eye fell off my tweety she’ll have to fix that!)

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