“It comes every year and will go on forever. And along with Christmas belong the keepsakes and the customs. Those humble, everyday things a mother clings to, and ponders, like Mary in the secret spaces of her heart.”

~ Marjorie Holmes, American writer.

This post was previously published in 2015.

Christmas painted skate

A lifetime of painting

As I look through boxes of decorations I am discovering all the crafts I worked on in the past.

I find myself remembering particular years when I was busily painting in my craft room much the way I am now, and I wonder how I ever found the time for my hobbies when I was working and raising my family.

And yet, I have ample proof that I painted and made crafty things even back then.

  • Below, in first photo is a wood napkin holder.
  • Second photo is a painted clay plant pot in which I melted wax to make it a candle.
  • Third photo shows Victorian Santas I painted for my Victorian themed Christmas tree.
santa napkin holder
santa candle holder
Victorian Santas
painted carollers

Since the children were young at the time, (most projects except for the skates in this post are from the 1990s) I painted lots of Santas.

After the 1990s, life and work got in the way of my crafts. Pencil art was easier to start and didn’t require a huge clean up so I turned to painting a few dogs now and then.

Some items were made in batches and then given away or sold in a craft shop on the outskirts of the city.

Above are carollers I painted and gave to my sister-in-law. These are my own creations and they were only made once.  They were very labour intensive.

The bodies are wooden eggs sitting on a base to keep them stable. I used Fimo clay for their noses and doll hair to make the figures more interesting. I had such fun painting their faces. I still have a set of wooden eggs in my craft room and I will make myself a set of carollers one of these years.

The lace angels below are in the front hall in my house for Christmas although they are usually on display somewhere in my house all year long.

Many friends and family received one of these lace angels as a gift at Christmas some years ago. I still see them on display in china cabinets, on my aunt’s piano, on a hutch in a dining room. I guess this was a  handmade gift that was truly very much appreciated.

Many years ago, I even had a workshop in my home and friends and work colleagues made these angels with me one evening.  Those are great memories.

The folk art angel below is displayed this year in my kitchen.

Christmas straw angels
folk art angel
painted Christmas skate

Last year, I painted the winter themed skates, one featured at the top of this post, and the other on the left.

They graced the front of the house for several months during winter. This year, I decided to go with a red theme so the skates are staying in storage, waiting for another blue themed Christmas.

What favourite crafts will you be displaying?

What stories are associated with your handcrafted keepsakes?

I would love to hear about your cherished keepsakes whether they are handcrafted or not.

4 Responses

  • You never cease to amaze me Louise, sometimes I wonder why you stayed teaching for so long when you could have made a living out of your artistic talents, but then, you would have missed the kids and the long hours etc. etc. ha ha… ????

    • You know it’s never too late, right? I am just trying different things all the time and it keeps me busy and happy. Thanks for your comment Sally. I know art is part of your life too. You have done some wonderful, creative things yourself and you also continue to explore and experiment. It makes life interesting doesn’t it?

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