Ganesha

I’ve been making progress on Wes’ sweater, and I think it’ll be done later this week. But of course, the second I get a fabulous new idea, I get distracted. I was digging around in my fabric stash and found a pair of Wes’ jeans, which were frayed around the hems and had a hole in one knee. I hemmed them and repaired the hole a couple years ago but he didn’t wear them, so I tucked them away to use the denim. However, on a whim I tried them on and they’re perfectly slouchy, and I really like the way they fit when I roll them up a little to offset their awkward length. So I got inspired and added an embroidered patch on one leg.

I’ve had this design knocking around for a while, thinking I’d turn it into a knit color chart, but it never quite worked. It’s also kind of a large stencil, so it wasn’t right for my previous projects. This ended up being just the right application. As I started embroidering I realized that some of my tracing (using chalk paper, since denim in pants-leg form is way too thick for my usual lightboard setup) was a little off. Check out what was supposed to be the toes on his left foot… Not quite right.

So I got a little creative rearranging those lines, rather than trying to retrace them and ending up with extra visible “draft” lines. I think the bed of flowers ended up being very sweet, and now I just need to give him a little mouse buddy and a few more flowers by his feet before he’s complete.

I love the image and the colors, and I’ve been familiar with Ganesha for a long time, but I wasn’t absolutely sure what he represents in the Hindu pantheon. How fitting is it that he is the god of beginnings, and that he is often honored and invoked as part of rites and ceremonies? It feels particularly germane to have brought Ganesh into my life during the month that I embarked on such an exciting, important new chapter. Ganesha is also known as the remover of obstacles, the patron of arts and sciences and the deva of intellect and wisdom. In most images and statues, he’s shown holding an axe (to cut ties of attachment), a bowl of sweets or a dessert of some kind (an offering, and his trunk is usually heading straight towards the treats), a rope (to pull yourself forward, symbolizing ambitions), and a particular mudra (hand gesture) that symbolizes blessings of wisdom and protection.

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