I have a little obsession with design from the Arts and Crafts era of the late 1800s and early 1900s. It’s the mix of wood, fabric and pottery, the nature themes, the importance of hearth, home, and handmade-ness that all appeal to me.
So, in making this fall blanket, I decided to use ginkgo leaves. It was the influence of Asia that brought the leaf into a little prominence during the Arts and Crafts period.
The ginkgo biloba tree (“biloba” = bi-lobed: the two halves of the leaf) has a reputation in Chinese and Japanese culture as a symbol of resilience, longevity, and hope.
My bit of internet research says that it’s one of the oldest living trees still on the earth. Apparently there are ginkgo leaf fossils over 270 million years old. Plus the sap has fire-retardant qualities that allow ginkgos to survive fires which destroy other trees.
And there it is: the resilience that leads to longevity that leads to hope.
These are great qualities! But mostly I just like how graceful the leaf is.
And the fact that I got my daughter to model it :)
Ginkgo Leaves, 60″ wide x 84″ long
[This blanket has gone to a Craftsman home in California and is no longer available.]