Aurora...as in Cithaerias aurorina...one of my favorite types of butterflies...the glass-winged butterfly. So lucid, yet so transparent, ethereal, delicate, light and fluttery yet so magnificent...truly a gift from Mother Nature herself.
Aurora is her name and her very being was inspired by the one and only Cithaerias aurorina, a sub-species of Cithaerias phantoma (a blushing phantom, glass-winged butterfly)...so tender a piece of glass that beholds our realm of nature.
Aurora is a custom creation for a wonderful lady I met over a year ago through Scarlet Elfcup. From the moment I met T, her candidness, her sensitive soul, her passionate spirit and her inner strength shone through immediately. The first custom creation I made for her inspired me to step beyond my boundaries and push for making something very different and more challenging than anything I had made up to that point. As a result, a sweet Valentina and her ballerina were born. In the ballerina was the tiniest doll (a mere 3 inches tall) I had ever created and the most different...clothing made from embroidery thread and hair needle felted from wool roving. I do so love that little ballerina and her Valentina up to this day. But, what is most important to point out was that this creation was inspired by hardship in T's life at that time. Yet, the theme of the creation was really focused much on love and hope.
Once again, as T came back to request a second custom this year, I was delighted and excited to make something for her which would represent the changes that we all face in life. For those of us who are mothers, that change comes with the tide and rude awakening of children who are heading off and away from the nest. As a mother, my heart is heavy with sympathy for all mothers who come face to face with this moment in life. My very own two little hearts are still very much at home. And even so, this year, my first went off to kindergarten and I tell you I've been a wreck for the past week. It's as if life as I knew it...the days of napping together, the days of waking up with no schedule, the days of staying inside under my wings where I know I can keep them close and safe...those days have ended so abruptly, leaving me to wonder how it had happened with the blink of an eye. So, I can't really fathom what it feels like to face the reality of your hearts packing up their belongings and going off to college...away...far off, out of sight, out of a hug's reach....a constant wondering of 'are they ok'....and now, how in the world do we face the empty house that we must go back to, the empty bedroom that used to be filled with laughs, cries, chatter, giggles, noise...a space that once was filled with our hearts floating all about is now a space that is filled with the dreadful sound of silence. I'll tell you how...with great inner strength that we did not know existed until that moment when we need it most. Because, in truth, we know deep in our hearts that we must let them go in order for them to change and transform into the fully grown and beautiful human being that they were meant to be. The metaphor for this change lies in the very essential stage of metamorphosis for the caterpillar into butterfly. As such, when T and I talked about the creation in the Spring, we agreed that the butterfly would be the perfect representation. And hence, butterflies have been floating about my house for months now. And how lovely it has been.
Similar to the previous custom that I created for T, she allowed me a great amount of freedom to create whatever my heart desired. However, I'll tell you that with such freedom, my heart tends to run wild or my mind seeks for such perfection that it stalls the process. When this happens, I have to remind myself to let go of perfection because it doesn't exist and to reign in the imagination for when it goes wild, focus is gone. So, when I do this, often times, I get a bit lost for a while because there is no 'ideal' to grasp for. It is when I must sit on my hands, quiet my mind and calm my heart and then listen real close. It is when I must let all the expectations go and let things take it's own course. And always, in this moment, it is when the hands are able to move more easily into making and then things begin to flow more naturally in the process of creation. Unfortunately, this isn't a process that happens overnight, which is why I've just now completed a custom that was allotted for completion in April. I will tell you that every step of the process is an intentional decision making process and there are no accidentals in the making of a custom creation.
The Blushing Phantom (Cithaerias phantoma) was chosen for this custom because of it's ethereal, delicate, blush pink, transparent wings....all the characteristics that are nothing short of heavenly.
Aurora is created from Scarlet Elfcup's 8" Le Petite Elfcup doll pattern. She is made with all natural materials. Her doll skin is made with 100% cotton interlock imported from the Netherlands. She is firmly stuffed with bio-wool made in the USA. Her seams are sewn twice for reinforcement. She has embroidered facial features. Her facial structure is lightly sculpted giving her a sweet little face with round chubby cheeks and deeper set eyes. Her nose, cheeks and various body parts are blushed with red beeswax. Aurora's beautiful locks are made of 100% suri alpaca. She is a sitting doll. She also has a belly button and a bum.
Aurora comes wearing a fairy princess dress made from the most delicate fibers and colors. The dress is lined with a 100% rose cotton fabric and layered on top with tulle and the most delicate and pretty vintage lace trim made of 100% French cotton. It opens fully on the back with nickel-plated brass snaps. Underneath her fairy dress she wears a pair of cotton bloomers made from a matching cotton fabric.
Aurora is wrapped on head and toes with hand knitted cap and tiny shoes made from a 100% mohair/silk yarn...light, fluffy and delicate.
Aurora's wing was a piece of work that took over 20 hours to complete. In order to produce transparency, her wings were hand embroidered over tulle...a most treacherous and thrilling journey, I tell you. The wing is embroidered with hand-dyed 100% silk French-made embroidery thread. The wing is removable by straps made from a 100% cotton vintage lace made in France.
Aurora...a beautiful and dainty fairy guardian of a delicate and loving soul....one Ms. T. Thank you for coming back into my life and inspiring yet another beautiful creation and mostly for giving me the gift of friendship through sharing both the wonderful parts of life and also the hard and treacherous bits...both of which are beautiful and to be embraced. I am so grateful for your presence and for our paths crossing, not so much in physical nature, but in spirit.