Today’s post is brought to you live from Colorado Springs! In order to pack for this mini-vacation, I had to dig out all of my winter clothes. All was going well until I made an unfortunate discovery: one of the buttons on my favorite coat came off. Button in one hand, coat in the other, did I know how to fix it? Absolutely not.
You see, this is where my friend Caroline could’ve really lent a hand. Caroline grew up by her mother, grandmother and great-grandmother’s side; three women who knew and believed women can be domestic AND empowered. That they can make a home AND a career. And that they can be good at both.
Recently, I spent a morning with Caroline to photograph her beautiful face and document her work in the kitchen for her new website (coming soon): Domestic Darlin’: Modern Messages for the Domestically Challenged. The purpose of the site is to teach basic domestic skills to other women who may not have had the luxury of hands-on learning in the home, or simply haven’t developed confidence in these areas. Caroline believes every woman can master domestic skills, they just need a little guidance and direction to get started.
I really believe that as young women, there are certain little, simple skills that go a long way towards make your home a warm, welcoming place for you, your friends, and/or your family. And the ability to create that environment lends itself toward creating happy memories and stronger family ties. What makes our generation of women so strong is that we can do anything. But in getting to this point, and fighting through feminism, homemaking acquired a certain stigma. I’ve even made snide comments about girls who go to college for their “MRS degree.”
Three generations taught Caroline everything she knows about sewing buttons, baking from scratch, arranging flowers and so much more. A large part of her childhood was spent in the kitchen: baking bread with her great-grandmother, cakes with her grandmother and learning from (and actually meeting!) Martha Stewart with her mom. Growing up in her home, the kitchen was the gathering place, more than a TV or family room.
The women in my family have carried on very strong, domestic traditions, but are still very independent, intelligent women. I remember finding a button of my great grandmother’s (Randy Duncan) that said “A woman’s place is in the House…and the Senate, and the Oval Office.” She was a super feminist for her time!
Lessons coming soon on the Domestic Darlin’s website. Until then, if you’re interested in learning more or want to ask Caroline a question directly, follow her on Twitter @crfabacher or @adomesticdarlin. While you’re at it, you might want to ask her for the brownie recipe she used the day of this shoot. They are seriously the best brownies I’ve ever had in my LIFE! I know I’m looking forward to following the DD’s work, and picking up a few new skills of my own! Who knows, maybe I’ll even be able to fix this coat button.
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