Thursday, January 28, 2010

Weeping Willows

Weeping Willow sympathy card by Anemone Letterpress

We grew up with a weeping willow in our backyard. I loved getting tangled in the low-hanging branches, I would hide beneath it, and wrap myself up in the green tendrils, making it almost impossible to escape. I've since learned that the weeping willow was a Victorian symbol for mourning.

Here's a few contemporary versions of the weeping willow. First, an organic cotton weeping willow pillow by Enhabitan:

Weeping Willow Hand Dyed Batik Infant T-Shirt by Potomac River Goods:

Weeping Willow Rubber Stamp by Wood Cellar Graphics:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Memory Locket

Here's a sweet heart to keep close to your own heart. This daisy heart locket by Lanyapi Designs is made with antiqued brass, and opens up to keep a beloved picture inside.

For men who mourn, here's a keychain with a heart and wrench. It's called Love Takes Work, and I think it can also be appropriate as a symbol for a heart that's in need of mending.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Repurposed Sweaters

The ability to transform sentimental old knits into something meaningful is a wonderful solution for inherited clothing. There are many options - aprons, quilts, floor rugs. If you can't do it yourself, Reknit can transform an old sweater into something fun, like a scarf (each month a new item is offered.)

But what about the pets in our lives? Why not give your pet something to remember a loved one by? I came across this repurposed sweater/pet pillow on If your grandfather has passed away, leaving behind a beloved dog, I'm sure the pet would love to have a pillow made from his old cardigans. What a lovely source of comfort!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Embroidered Linens

Artist Joetta Maue takes old linens and embroiders messages directly onto them, imbuing these sentimental yet discarded items with new emotional meaning. I love her work!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Modern Memento Mori: Sugar Skull Laptop Decal

Every morning I sit down with my laptop. When I open it, I'm suddenly engaged in a world of obligation and distraction. News, work, email from friends, blogs, on and on. But what if before letting all this in I took a moment to remember that all this shall pass? What's important, and what's just noise?

Here's a little memento mori to go with your morning coffee. This Sugar Skull Laptop Decal by Beepart comes in many colors, and makes any laptop a work of remembrance art.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Memory of Friends

I love vintage embroidery, and I especially adore remembrance embroideries. This 19th century memory quilt offered by Linen Closet is very sweet. According to the sellers, women would each contribute a piece of fabric to make one quilt as a symbol of their friendship. The different fabrics, colors and textures, each contributed by a different person, come together to make a unique pattern.

The one below has a sweet adage embroidered in the center, "Good Deeds Will Be Rewarded".

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

bound by love

Memorial services are about expressing love.

Like a wedding, we gather to declare our love, respect and honor. But instead of witnessing the love of two who are wed, we witness the encompassing love of friends, family, and all those whose lives were touched by the one gone before. Instead of till death do us part, we find out our love means death cannot make us part.

And we realize that our love is like a giant puzzle - all the little pieces come together to create an amazing portrait. I've been thinking about how best to capture this multi-faceted love. A book like this one by Quotes and Notes is a good way to gather collective memories. Divided into separate note cards, everyone can write a thoughtful note or memory. The fact that they are not bound like a book makes them more fluid - they can be spread out, flipped through, organized in any fashion that's meaningful.

I also love the simplicity and lack of frills with this design. Lovely.