Tuesday, August 2, 2011

the original orangina

For a few short years I was lucky enough to know Lorry.  We met through mutual friends/quilters when I was asked to join their small round robin circle.  In fact, we called ourselves the birdies, or robins.  The combined talent of the group was mind-boggling.  (This is a post for another day).  Today, my heart is full of Lorry.  She passed away earlier this spring and I miss her.  When we met it was immediately clear that we had everything in common!  We were, as Lorry liked to joke, twin sisters, separated at birth.  Never mind that she hailed from an authentic Yankee family in New England while I was raised in New York; or that we were more than 20 years apart in age.  We were soul sisters!
We shared the love of gardening.  (this was one of her gardening hats)  She was a Master Gardener.  She grew tree peonies the likes of which I've never seen before, or since.  She claimed that the mushroom soil she imported made all of the difference.  (it did)  She once bought a sugar shack in Vermont and had it trucked to her property where she created the most enchanting potting shed that you could ever imagine.
We both loved sunflowers - in any form!  What's not to love about a sunflower?
We both adhered to the belief that going out without a scarf was akin to being undressed!  A closer look at that old aran sweater?  Why not!  I'm proud of this creation.
This was a gift that I knitted for mom, at least 12 years ago.  She lost a lot of weight during Dad's illness, so she gave it back to her chubby daughter.  It's so much fun to see the old work - this was a Green Mountain yarn - I don't remember the pattern.  I digress...


Lorry left behind a wealth of talent and an unspeakably gigantic STASH.  Much of her fabric was distributed to the original members of the Robins.  I was really overwhelmed with what I was given.
I've already started working on some small projects, such as these little seed packet prints.  I think that they would make wonderful hot mats, but probably would be unable to bring myself to use them!  So I'm playing around with other concepts.  Lorry was very advanced in machine embroidery.  She made exquisite dish towels for her Robins.  And once again, I just cannot use them - but I keep them out where they can be admired.
Lorry and I shared a passion for color.  Have you figured it out yet?  We instinctively reached for the color ORANGE.  It was our neutral, our go-to color. 
 And, this will come as no surprise - our favorite holiday was Halloween.
I think of Lorry every time I walk into my sewing room where I have started a new orange quilt in her honor, using her wonderful cottons.
Lorry was the real McCoy.  She rode horses in her seventies and made quilts for SPCA organizations around the country.  She travelled, she lovingly tended to her Tasha Tudor-like gardens, her beloved corgis and her friends.  She was generous to a fault.  When she passed her round robin name 'Orangina' down to me, I was touched and proud to carry that torch.  Lorry, I didn't have enough time with you.  But I am so very grateful for the time that we did have together.  







5 comments:

passingdowncrazy said...

Wow! How wonderful to have someone in your life like that!

J said...

What a wonderful tribute to your friend! Such a great reminder to all of us how sweet and precious friendship can be.

Zoey said...

What a hearfelt tribute. You were a great friend.

Suz said...

Oh you two were so lucky to have found each other....I know I would have loved her too, even though I don't can't do anything with a needle...but I garden...
Orangina....so sorry you are missing her now...

Delisa said...

Hi Jody, what a loving and heartfelt tribute to such a dear friend. Lorry sounded like a beautiful person! I so admire women who live their creative passions to the fullest and who are so generous, and unselfish with their time and knowledge. I'm so glad you hear that you have a friend like Lorry. I say have, because people like that, never truly leave us. They are still alive and vibrant in every thought and memory of those who loved them. And when you tell you her story like you did today, it raises the bar and gives us all something to aspire to become. Thank you for your wonderful post today.

Have a lovely and restful evening ahead! Delisa :)