When I am out thrifting I often wonder about the people who owned all the stuff lining the shelves. Especially the things that are handcrafted. Those old quilts and afghans and original oil paintings...
I stumbled on these two plastic cases of embroidery thread at the thrift store the other day. They were tucked in the grab bag section of the store where miscellaneous threads and lace and zippers are sold.
It is one of my favorite places to dig through because what has been deemed not worthy to sell alone is zip locked together to add value by volume. I find bags full of jewelry beads and vintage spools of threads and antique lace for a couple of dollars all the time.
I almost didn't notice these at first. I didn't see past the dingy plastic containers and nearly missed the treasure inside. Some dear lady (I imagine her older because of the wavering scripted numbers) lovingly wound and labeled the floss and organized them all by number. She even had a color chart that I am sure she referred to all the time.
I imagine the countless nights she spent creating beauty from these simple strings...the samplers and pillow cases she gave lovingly as gifts. Did she pass away or did her eyes just grow too dim and her hands too unsteady? I wonder who in her family felt it was time to drop them off at the thrift store along with worn out shoes and out of season blouses.
What an honor it has been for me to thread these pretty colors through a needle and begin to create new beauty to share. I wish I could tell her how much I love her little boxes of string and how glad I am to continue to bring joy with my hands, a little more beauty to the world and to preserve even a small part of her memory.