I have become slightly obsessed with other's stories. I love hearing about their backgrounds, their successes and failures, and the other lives lived before reaching their current place in history.
When I sat down about a year and a half ago and wrote about my transition from Corporate America to working for myself, I wrote a bit about my background and all the little things I had done and big people I had met along the way that formed my decision and what I decided I wanted to do to make a living. I became curious and wanted to know about everyone's backgrounds at that point. What had brought all of us here to where we stand today?
Of course, I know my friends pretty well and as interesting as all their lives are, I already knew their story. So I started reading biographies - Alexander Hamilton, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, if you count "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter". (I do believe this is the true account of what really happened. The movie was horrible though. Don't watch that.) I am still fascinated by our forefathers, but I wanted something closer to home.
I thought to myself, "What's so unlikely?" She seemed like a nice lady who liked to sew and turned it into a business. So, I was intrigued by this unlikeliness and downloaded her book to determine for myself whether or not her life was unlikely. It is indeed unlikely. I don't want to spoil it for you, but her story is inspiring and humbling, like many success stories out there. Not only was she able to make a living from sewing, her craft, but she thrived and built a business so big she pretty much single-handedly supported a town with it. She is a true icon and even though I can watch most of her TV episodes online, I still set my DVR to record them. I like having her in my living room guiding me through the steps of my sewing.
So when a friend invited me along to hear Heather Ross read from her new book "How To Catch A Frog", I tagged along in hopes of grabbing some more insight into someone else's story. You can probably guess at Heather's background by looking at her illustrations and her simple, flowy style of drawing and painting. But, I had no idea how it was merely the tip of the iceberg. What fascinates me more is how different her childhood was from mine. And while our style and craft are completely different, here we are in the same space. That's pretty awesome.
I bought a copy of her book at the Powerhouse Arena in DUMBO/Brooklyn where her talk was held and it felt good to support a local bookstore and a fellow craftsperson. Heather had her friend Maggie preserve Meyer Lemons as a giveaway if you bought a copy of the book, and free charm packs for those in attendance.
So charming, and another wonderful insight into an incredible woman. If you haven't read it, it'll make your love of wool and Clara even more emphatic.