My So Charmed Life

Art with Heart


Like most artist/designers, I have many (many) collections of all kinds of stuff in my home. In my case, much of it falls under the category of art. The walls are dense with pieces I’ve acquired, from friends, from yard sales, thriftstores, and from the artists themselves. I purchased the piece above from an estate sale on my block shortly after I moved in. I was blown away by the image and the workmanship. It seems very old and I don’t know anything more about it.

I love images of hearts in all styles, from vintage valentines, to religious icons, to anatomical representations. As a newly diagnosed cardiac patient, these depictions have taken on another layer of meaning for me. I ran across this beautiful object by Ukranian artist (living in Poland) Daryna Syniehibska on Instagram @duchess_of_brooches. I ran to her Etsy shop and made an immediate purchase. The description simply read: Beaded canvas Ukrainian blooming heart. Unbroken. With the last name Bloom, a heart that is literally (and figuratively since my mom’s death) broken, ancestors that hail from Ukraine, and an ongoing daily sense of sheer horror at the devastation being brought upon Ukraine by Russia, I was instantly and hopelessly in love with this work of great beauty and meaning. I asked her to sign and date the back, which she did, pictured below. A tiny-but-mighty Ukrainian flag was a perfect surprise.

I have never understood the snobbery of perfecting and hiding the back of embroidered work, of disallowing for the mark of the human hand. Life is messy, art is messy, perfection is way overrated. I will treasure this treasure forever. Please visit this amazing artist on Etsy, her sensibility and subject matter is unique, her command of traditional crafts is incredible, and her talent is evident in every little detail. The brooches pictured below are available now (with free shipping!) and I might have to have one.

In keeping with beaded artworks, I’ve owned the piece below for so long I’m forgetting its provenance. I believe I acquired it during Etsy early days, and I believe it is Peruvian folk art. Beads, buttons… what is not to love about this lovely piece?

I’ll leave you with a thriftstore piece that I fondly call Our Lady of the Bead Studio. She isn’t really beaded, but made from one of those crafty kits you might have bought in the 1960s or 70s, where you glued tiny colorful pebbles onto a patterned board. I know I did a few of those and there are no words for my adoration of this object. Suffice to say, she has watched over the jewelry studio since the very beginning. Amen!