Signs and Symbols | Textile Collecting

One area of personal interest for me is in textiles and the signs and symbols found in these fascinating items. There is an ageless beauty and significance to the patterns seen in these everyday objects used daily by people throughout history. Whether it's a rug or a quilt, textiles have a "closeness" to all of us, and they are frequently decorated with images of spiritual and cultural significance.

Because of this, I have long collected textiles for their imagery, rather than their style. Certain symbols and motifs are frequently repeated, and their representation and meaning is surprisingly similar from culture to culture and throughout time. These symbols are the cross, a symbol of balance, integration and relationship; the circle, a symbol of wholeness, unity and spiritual power; the spiral, a symbol of growth and evolution; the triangle, frequently used to represent attainment of goals and dreams; and the square, representing security, rationality and the elemental forces.

I have spent countless hours researching the use of these symbols in human culture and find this to be a fascinating topic of study and discovery. Do you also collect items based on their cultural and/or symbolic significance? Leave a comment and let me know what you've learned.

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