How a thought might take hold

A little cobblecloth to start.  I took time out yesterday, to take this one, above,  off the wall.  Because as I caught a glimpse of it, I caught  the opportunity to express a new aspect of Haven.  Inspired by the group here and some previous thought about how there is always something moving through place.  Making space for that makes it more.

Thought Catching.  Thinking is unavoidable.  But catching the thoughts is a habit.  At this point, I can't help myself.  I just do it, even in my sleep.
Thinking is who we are.  Thoughts caught are a way to share that.  To communicate.   Art is the attempt to communicate.  That is my simply take on it.
The attempt to communicate by giving external form to thought. So let's begin.

First, I want to say Thank You.  I can already see that doing this will help me.

Next. I want to say something about the words underlined in red dots.  You see them right?  They are part of my thought catching process here.  Because you see,   this place is that.  A Thought Catcher.  And this series, even more so.  I've only just begun really.  If you hover  with your mouse or click (depending on your device),  you should see  some information pop up  that is related to  a glossary entry  that I need for my book and also a tool for me to develop my  Spirit Cloth Language..   I am currently building that   by just going.  Eventually it might be quite grand.    It relates to my own considerings and symbols and redefinitions...   and grows out of my thought catching process. There is so much to gather.  And I think each day after  considering this and that I will add to these word references.  And so it will evolve.

I chose Patchwork as a theme for this series.  I want to catch some thoughts about that to begin... and I am interested in yours as well.  I will share some of my reconsidering tomorrow.  But for now,  I'm curious, so what if I throw this question out there?

When you hear the word patchwork, what do you think of first?   I think I thought of  quilt before any reconsidering.  Do you?  I mean with out any deep thought.  Patchwork. What does it bring to mind?


  1. My first encounter with patchwork was at school. We had to make a lampshade using cardboard squares with fabric around it and sew them together. I must say I hated the whole proces, a feeling of being restricted, I think. The same thing as having to colour between line, I guess.
    When being a mom I started making quilts from old children clothes, as a memory, and I really loved the process of holding al these good memories in my hands. Then I found your blog and YES! That was the way I loved! Just using pieces of cloth and being free and the proces of just going. And now I think of freedom and feeling comfortable.

  2. Quilt. Patchworkquilt could be a single word. From quilt I think of my grandmother’s quilts, possibly because yesterday I took apart an old quilt I have that my grandmother made, probably in the 1920’s or 30’s. It was probably used until the 60’s or 70’s. I’ve had it for decades. One side is a cotton print, very thin and torn in places. The other side is all strips of rectangles of wool fabric. In very good shape. I’ve taken it apart as step 1 of re-using the wool fabric and hopefully some of the cotton and also the cotton batting. Dont know what I will make, but I’ve started.

  3. Judy

    Before I had time to think about it, the word patchwork evoked an image of patching/mending which when I was growing up had to be hidden. Then images of beautiful boro mending came into my mind.

  4. Jude you are a treasure.

    PATCHWORK: my life. holding together – strong in places, not so in others; random story pieces; colours shapes textures all different working together making whole making something beautiful and unique out of old things, broken things sad things beautiful things, things you don’t know what to do with. I’m not talking neat and measured patchwork, too premeditated.. I’m talking about the instinctive flow of this here, and that there and how beautiful these two things have become together, and made something new and full of spirit, life and a new way to see an old story. patchwork like this has soul and conveys something much deeper, connects with some. thing. inside. actually a visual language – with a different story for everyone. and each-stitch-holding-a-thought (or not)! a kind of mind map.

  5. Laura R

    I don’t think I ever considered patchwork, the word, until you described stitching inch square, finger-pressed cotton pieces while commuting on the train. ‘Hand-stitching’ is so broad an idea, but it’s what comes to mind.

  6. Raheli

    Patchwork is a meeting of different pieces meeting in lines and filling in all the space. Patchwork landscape leaps to my mind even before patchwork quilts…

  7. JayJay

    Patchwork is a form of patterning – not necessarily geometric. It can be the building of pattern from smaller elements, but also perceiving how a pattern can be distilled from a larger wholeness.

  8. Patchwork for me: endless possibilities. Pieces become something completely new when the are connected . Colors start to shine in good company. Patchwork has so many moments to marvel.

  9. Alison

    I was about eight. Outside in the garden sitting on a blanket cutting out paper hexagons with my friend Dee while Mum watched and worked in the kitchen. Cutting cloth hexagons a little larger then sewing both together. Somehow removing the paper. Scraps of cloth scraps of memories. Holding us all together.
    Also recently, feeding the birds daily for many years I used to find precious scraps of cloth gifted back to me. Beautiful blue frayed pieces safely stored away.

  10. jillayne

    Patchwork is a gathering together… in my family we were always patching things together to make something else, but it was always in a way where you could see all the bits and pieces, often random, but still unified in more ways than just their togetherness. My brother once made a four foot by five foot bookcase with three shelves, and there was not one piece of wood in it bigger than 12″ – not one. That was patchwork, as much as the quilt my mom made me from my baby clothes – not cut into shapes, but patched as they came from the garments. Patchwork. A joining?

    • Stephanie

      “Creativity is just connecting things” [Steve Jobs] . Patchwork was never for me when it was straight lines, perfect corners, all done to someone else’s design with a known outcome. 78 years of looking, learning, collecting, teaching, procrastinating……….maybe patchwork for me will be connecting the dots.

  11. lumbrla

    Patchwork – unpleasant blankets made from regular pieces of fabric, sliced with a cutting wheel, unpleasant word just for it.
    Jude opened the cage and led the patchwork out to freedom.
    So unexpected for me, so beautiful.
    Thank you very much, Jude.

  12. I’m empty headed past midnight, but SOUND DIDN’T HAPPEN FOR ME. Meanwhile leaving town for five days starting Tuesday so I’ll miss a lot but I’ll catch up….Open House is a fine notion by the way.

  13. Coco Huin

    Patchwork for me is,
    Patching life with sequences of memories mending the future with Love .
    And Work is a solace for a community deeply engage in Art”therapy” …Little pieces of spirit Cloth by little pieces of Spirit Cloth…
    Dear Jude thank you to unfold all this beauty !

  14. Peggy McG

    Patchwork to me is creative thrifty use of fabric scraps.. quilting is piecework.. planned and fabric purchased for the purpose of making a useful design. I am so much more drawn to the creative and thrifty uses! If it grows to quilt size and a warm item is created out of need all the better!

    • jude

      Yes and no for me, American quilting has such a history of thrift. Modern quilting, well modern everything has slipped into a marketing scheme. Even Boro, So much to talk about there.

  15. What immediately comes to mind when I hear patchwork is an image of the patches sewn onto the knees of our “dungarees” when we were kids – mine & my brothers” and sister’s. Like many, we were a young post-WWII family, trying to make ends meet & clothing was patched & repatched and handed down to the next youngest. Mending. But for me, now the word applies to just about everything else in the world. Living among other humans, we are constantly patching together something — relationships, memories, broken dreams, worn out gardening gloves, and all manner of human mess-making. And always, of course, there is the fabric we pick up, the needle we thread, and the stitching, the wordless expression that brings us back to ourselves every time.

  16. debgorr

    Going to comment before reading anything else. First thought was that patchwork was two pieces of cloth sewn together with a seam. Probably a more traditional definition. But then I thought mending… to patch something is to mend. So mending and joining. I like that thought a lot. Now I’m going to read what everyone else said. 🙂

    • jude

      it’s hard to catch the real thought, right? without being influenced by a community? maybe when i was younger, watching my mom lot, I might have thought of iron on patches. Not as romantic but real.

      • debgorr

        It can be when you want the first impression, the instinctive answer. Seemed most appropriate to answer you question that way. And then so interesting to read everyone’s thoughts. To see what we all patched together as a community….

      • Sarita

        Patchwork means to me, separate parts connecting to form a whole.
        A process that holds it all together.
        A life, relationships, a career, the diversity of the universe is a patchwork with seperate parts seeking meaning in wholeness.

just share what moves through you...