The Hidden Art of Homemaking, Part One

I’ve recently begun reading The Hidden Art of Homemaking by Edith Schaeffer. What a gem! I’ve never read any other of Mrs. Schaeffer’s work and I am really enjoying this book. Rather than give lists of things to accomplish or paragraphs on how to organize time, Mrs. Schaeffer chose instead to inspire her readers to find ways of making their homes beautiful, using what she calls the “hidden arts”.

The contents of the book include: The First Artist; What is Hidden Art?; Music; Painting, Sketching, Sculpturing; Interior Decoration; Gardens and Gardening; Flower Arrangements; Food; Writing – Prose and Poetry; Drama; Creative Recreation; Clothing; Integration; Environment. All of the above are applied to how a homemaker – whether a he or she, a single person, or married, a parent, grandparent, or neither – can truly enjoy art within his/her home.

From page 63: “Develop it [your creative capacity for expression] for your own sake, for the enrichment of the lives of those you live with, and as an unconcious spark to set fire to to other dry wood, other creative creatures on a finite level.” A major theme in this book is that of not letting your talents lie dormant while you are waiting to “arrive”. So often, we dream of when’s and if’s, saying that we’ll do that thing that we so love to do at that time. Sadly, when or if that time arrives, we may find ourselves incapable of doing that which we had so long dreamed of. We may also find that we no longer have the skills necessary to achieve our dreams, because we let them relax for so long.

Mrs. Schaeffer implores us to use our talents now, where we are, with whatever means we are capable, in order to not let them go to waste. If you can play the flute, do not wait until you are on stage in a concert hall; play for your children, for your neighbors, for your church. If you can paint beautifully, do not wait until you have the perfect studio in which to create. Make the world your studio and practice your art so that it can be enjoyed. If you sew, if you dance, if you sculpt, if you arrange flowers – do it now. From page 77: “We foolish mortals sometime live through years of not realizing how short life is, and that TODAY is our life.”

Next time: What is art, anyway?

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Published in: on April 22, 2010 at 5:41 am  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. sounds like a really interesting book

  2. […] One: Now? I’m waiting until… Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)The perfect repWhite Puffle Seen!Two Perfect […]


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