Handmade home goods from me to you. 

I come from a lineage of Black women makers. Black women who sewed out of necessity and pleasure. My aunt Olive Saloma Dameron dedicated so much of her short life to crafting beautiful things with her hands and instilled in me a love for it as well. 

When she died suddenly at 36, I was just 7, but young enough to know that when my family saved her craft things for me I had been brought into a tradition. I’ve spent the many years since teaching myself and finding mentors who could show me how to use the tools, how to create, to more fully become who I am also destined to be. 

 

Everyday Use

Alice Walker introduced us to the idea of two types of modern Black women: those who frame up and look upon our heirlooms as treasures, items in a museum, and those of us who use the gifts we’ve been given. My grandma is either mortified or pleased that the China and special serving dishes in her curio we could never use, is now in my kitchen cabinet, and pulled down regularly. 

An heirloom I especially cherish is a quilt my Aunt Olive made out of fabric scraps, but was large enough to cover a queen-sized bed. Every house, every bed I’ve slept in has known and will know the weight of her hours at the sewing machine. I am practicing to be able to know how to mend so that I can not be afraid to be loved by this quilt for years to come. It is probably somewhere close to 5 decades old already. 

From my home to yours

Please enjoy the items! As they say, they are priced “to move” and to both help me buy more materials and distribute some of the proceeds to Black Art Futures Fund and my new initiative Nurturing Neighborhoods. The joy I get in the making, in slowing down, and thinking of what to create to make our lives beautiful, even now, is payment enough. 

I can’t wait to see how they show up in your homes. 

—DéLana