Whilst on holidays, I bought these gorgeous earrings. We found them in a very appealing shop in the little fishing village of Bermagui. Straight away, they made me think of Frida Kahlo – an artist whose story, art and style I have adored since my first university sojourn. I don’t much wear earrings and when I do they are usually small and plain. But these – oh what an extravagance – both visually and financially. I cannot even remember the last time I bought jewellery for myself, let alone something new. But these earrings were just so glorious. So I bought them!
I’ve worn them almost every time I’ve gone out since. And without fail, someone always comments on them. Just last week, whilst I was in line at the Student Centre, waiting for help with my enrolment, a woman came up to me, grabbed my elbow and said – “I saw your earrings as I was passing in the street – they are divine!”
Sadly, infuriatingly, teeth-gnashingly, I’ve lost one. I cannot believe this. I wore them on Monday to a dreadful meeting I had with the head of department to sort out my enrolment – frankly, it’s been a really tedious week. It was the kind of meeting where I had to pee five times before even getting into the meeting where I then sat with my hands clasped tightly hoping I wouldn’t cry. These beautiful earrings were my Frida courage. I must have taken them off when I got home. Now there is only one. One. ONE! I don’t know how this could be. I’ve crawled around the floor with a torch. Dragged the furniture aside. Rolled back rugs. Looked in everything. Nothing. Julian has lifted the sofa up from one end. Abby has crawled under the beds. She’s working on a $20 commission.
First world problem, I know. And my enrolment disaster has been resolved. In my muddled up head it seems as if the lost earring has been exacted as an offering to the great and cranky enrolment god – “You dare ask for something different – I will seize that which you are coveting!” Something like that :-(
Anyways – the earrings, combined with the pleasure I had before Christmas stitching my crocheted nativity dolls, made me think of making a Frida doll. I dragged together some wool from the stash and started with her feet. The first leg is completely straight – the second leg, I added some shape for her ankle and knee and thigh – much nicer. The white bloomers were marvellous fun – and then I cinched in a lovely waist. I ran out of white, so her brassiere became smaller than planned and pale pink. Then the arms – with shaped wrists, elbows and upper arms, and finally the head. It’s been a work in progress – growing in fits – and this morning, as I waited for final confirmation that my enrolment was now settled (a huge phew!) I tried to still my twitching limbs by stuffing her and adding some features.
She’s definitely a prototype. I’d like to write up a pattern and make several outfits – I foresee using the same shape to make different favourite women – Frida, Austen’s Emma and Elinor, a Young Victoria, and Anne Shirley for starters. With clothes – mostly sewn, some knitted. So when it came to stuffing this here Frida, and there was no lovely pure wool stuffing left - I made do with dried pinto beans for the body and a bit of dark fleece for her head. Not quite right but still plenty good enough to turn her from a flat pile of misshapen crochet to a character that felt so real as she sat on my lap and I sewed her head shut! It was one of those moments where I found myself talking to my sewing :-)
I ran out of steam soon after that – a bit of needle felting, a chunky bead necklace and the thoughts of a Mexican green skirt. Maybe tomorrow. And I have some lovely wool I bought on super sale to try again – I’ll write out the pattern as I stitch.
Until then – I’m off to bed with a glass of milk. What a week.
p.s. if you know where you can buy earrings that look like these, do please let me know!