On Saturday, my friend Louise brought us together for a day of making. Lou, Jo, myself and our girls spent the afternoon creating Christmas wreaths from natural materials like leaves, native flowers, rattan, ivy trails and wisteria tendrils we cut straight from the vine. Natural art forms woven tight with the sacred art of friendship.
First we made a loop out of rattan, deciding how big we wanted our wreath to be. We wrapped the extra rattan around the loop, weaving it in and out.
Then the girls looped vines and leaves around the rattan loop, tucking the ends under the weaves. Once they were happy with their basic form, it was time to add flowers, gumnuts and sprigs of foliage. We used wire where we needed to, wrapping it around the smaller flowers to hold them in place.
The girls were full of questions and calls for help with design or structure. The day hummed along absorbed by conversation and doing. How good it felt to be caught up in a communal flow, where time became a place and thoughts effortlessly became words. The gentle, soothing murmur of mothers connected to mothers, connected to daughters, connected to earth.
Making something together, using our hands to translate our hearts, is surely the best way we can come together. True creativity urges us to simply be ourselves, present in our work. The more we sat together, weaving and wondering, the more I realised that perhaps this is what is missing in my modern life. The stillness and solidarity between people, working on a shared task. The messages silently passed onto our girls that day — and many others just like it — cannot be taught in words.
Some special ways to come together with friends:
- Prepare a feast together and linger over the eating
- Papercraft side by side, making flowers or decorations
- Gather wood to make a bonfire together and share stories
- Working bees are a simple way to collaborate at one another’s homes
- Bring a ‘pot luck’ picnic dinner to a favourite beach or park
Do you share things like this with your friends?