The books I have been waiting so long for finally arrived in the mail. I had thought they would have been hard bound but the 2 soft covered book came in a cardboard holder.
The subject of these books reach right back to my childhood. The Principal of my primary school, (that is kids 5 to 8 years old), was a Mrs Legard, heavens I still remember her name, and at the tender age of 5 or 6 all I wanted to be was a singer and actress. My mother was horrified. My father worked with actors and they were not suitable people according to her. So, At 6 years of age I got a job at the radio station where my father worked reading the children's birthdays on the children's program on a Saturday. After lots of arguments with my mother about my aspriations, we had an interview with the principal, who I thought would take my mothers side but she said "I think she will make a great actress".
This woman became someone important to me and over time I got to know her mother and father who were retired missionaries from China, Mr & Mrs Hutton. Their mission was to the Miao, this must have been back before, or near to the turn of the 1900's. I was fascinated by their stories of their lives in China but this took place in the 1950's and all things Chinese were taboo. But I never lost my interest in these people and their life and customs. Many came to the USA and Australia after the Vietnam war. Since that time I have looked for their works, when I went to Thailand and any exhibition that I could find.
These books fill in all the gaps in my knowledge of their work as they look at the traditional work of artisans that is still carried on in China. It also comes with a full set of patterns of some of the work and an explanation of what each one means.
I don't think I would ever stitch any of this work but I can still look and appreciate it. It also brings back memories of those two elderly people telling that little child stories of their colourful lives and the people they came to love in China.
These books were expensive but I was lucky to get a copy as they sold out within days of being released. They are sure worth the wait.