All of my time at Merryl’s mosaic studio is squeezed into the mornings before I go to work, the evenings after I’ve finished work, and occasionally on my days off. These hours and the fact that it’s a studio mean it’s time away from the family and home.
But on the recent school holidays, a couple of my days off coincided with Merryl’s opening hours and time when Abby and Sacha were at home. Sacha was keen to try her hand at mosaics – and proved to be speedy and talented, making a lovely photo frame and cat teapot – and Abby was very happy to play mosaic assistant to me – my ultimate Kaffe Fassett dream :-) I presented her with the tiles required, the cutter and the glue and she cut and filled in the already created spaces whilst I worked on the new design bits.
And this child of mine, she has clearly inherited – and improved upon! – my attention to detail. All those orange border tiles were meticulously spaced out and their red and turquoise mates carefully tested before being glued into place. She cut the orange rays of sun with precision and created lovely streams of light.
Then, she sat there by my side for hours, cutting the little blue and white sky tiles into four, stacking them into neat piles of colour so I could just pluck as I created my swirly background, chatting away about school, her upcoming exams, her hopes for life after school, how she will paint and set up her bedroom at Wombat Hill, what she would like to do on the farm, what drawings she is currently working on, the anime she is watching, the books she is reading, the dolls she is stitching …
Now I’ve met truly lovely kindred spirits down at Merryl’s studio – let alone Merryl herself who is such a delightful, passionate and creative woman – and we have spent many hours, cutters and tiles in hand whilst we talk about our families, our work, what we love, what drives us nuts … They are good times indeed and I regularly wish I’d signed up for Merryl’s mosaic workshops years ago. However, we have made plans to visit regularly and I have offers of places to stay when we do which I am so looking forward to.
But there is something extra special about having your child by your side and these holiday hours were some of the loveliest I’ve spent at mosaics.
Makes me think we need to set up a wee mosaic studio at Wombat Hill Farm – our own little space, shelves filled with tiles, huge work bench, some tile and glass cutters … Yes Abby and I could have good times together there indeed. Mum would definitely be up for it.
Hmmmmm …. I think we will need to wrestle away a corner of Julian’s workshop :-)