the satisfaction of mending

the satisfaction of mending
glorious hilma

discovered: manner market

I feel rather smug really, what’s it called, “virtue signaling?” “Why yes of course I mend my clothes.” I’ve always enjoyed the satisfaction of mending, but now, I’ve taken it to a new level.

I don’t care who I’m satisfying, my “inner peasant,” who takes delight at the thought of saving money, or the “creative,” who just wishes to express herself.

Mending is a wholly satisfying process, no analyses needed. 

Until Katrina Rodabaugh though,

I never really ranked different mending tasks, styles, or techniques.

Little did I know there was a whole hierarchy of “mending matters.”

And, Mending Matters, is the name of Rodabaugh’s book, the one I mentioned months ago, here. As you can see, I’m happily on my way working on the work of art I intend to make of these jeans.

Next, that small hole above my work of art. 

I’m spoiled now, for the more mundane tasks of sewing on buttons and shortening hems. Mending the Rodabaugh way, using the Japanese “boro” method is like the chocolate mousse of mending. Simple, not simple.

To take a look at some of Katrina Rodabaugh’s work, you can follow her on Instagram, or you can just buy her book and start mending. Do you mend?

hilma af klint

Hilma af Klint (1862-1944), Swedish artist who didn’t want her work shown until 20 years after her death. Hilma af Klint, who said she was “painting for the future.” Hilma af Klint who came before Kandinsky and Mondrian. Hilma af Klint, whose works were seen for the first time in 1984! Glorious Hilma!

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt like rhapsodizing about an artists’s exhibit.

There’s almost too much to say about this woman and her work. She seemed to have envisioned things, then seen what was deep within them, everything they were composed of, through them and then behind them, capturing both the ephemeral and essential.

And then she made it as real as anything the rest of us were familiar with and able to see, but it was still more exquisite than anything we ever had seen.

“If you like to hallucinate but disdain the requisite stimulants, spend some time in the Guggenheim Museum’s staggering exhibition.”

—New York Times

Glorious Hilma, joyous Hilma, spritual Hilma, who could see what others couldn’t, thank you Hilma. 

To read more about af Klint, go here. You have until April 23, to come to New York and see the exhibit. 

manner market

It’s not like I don’t understand the people who collect them, but in any case, I’ve never had a strong desire to own a Hermés silk scarf.

While I appreciate them, they really are little works of art, I’m much more into knit scarves. I do love silk though, and these silk bandanas I recently discovered, from Manner Market, are extremely desirable!

I really didn’t know which scarves to show you because all of the colors available are yummy. But you’ve got to admit, that carmel brown one is the yummiest.
I know I recently disparaged the never-ending leopard print craze, but I also know that some of you are not yet over it, so if you must, you could do much worse than this little beauty, also form Manner Market


“The pictures were painted directly through me, without preliminary drawings and with great power. I had no idea what the pictures would depict and still I worked quickly and surely without changing a single brush-stroke.”
—Hilma af Klint



  • Melanie says:

    Hilma af Klint – I’m speechless. Blown away by her work and her instructions about her work. I will think about her often. I am a mender but very slap-dash, and sometimes it involves packing tape (in emergencies). Boro is an artform, definitely.

  • Deb says:

    I have a game I play each year where I try to make a pair of jeans last an entire growing season. With all the friction they encounter on a daily basis, the mending starts by July. I will admit that if I pull them out of the dryer in the morning and discover that the ass region is about to give way, I’ll sometimes slap on an iron-on patch in the interest of getting out the door quickly. They never last like the ones that I take time to sew on, of course.
    If the jeans make it to the end of the season, they are consigned to the compost pile.

    • Anita Irlen says:

      Deb, Having once worked on a farm, I do understand. I don’t think mending our jeans “boro” style would really work for you. Perhaps for your “going out” jeans? Thanks for this great story!

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