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L.C. Van Houten
Celebrating Women - the 19th Amendment Centennial - 1920 - 2020

Celebrating Women - the 19th Amendment Centennial - 1920 - 2020

This year we celebrate a century since the ratification of the 19th Amendment. Though it would be more than a generation before ALL american women citizens could vote - the women's suffrage movement was the culmination of decades of momentum towards rights for women. Many women leaders with strong voices and articulate minds poured themselves into the movement. These women found intellectual stimulation, social connection and personal empowerment and we celebrate them. Here's to the women who kept pushing and to those who keep pushing now. May we never rest until ALL women and ALL human beings are treated with dignity and equality.   ...

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L.C. Van Houten
Dutch Buttons and Family History

Dutch Buttons and Family History

* My tenth great grandfather, Balthazar Ulrich was a button maker. He married Jannetje Cjalders on the tenth of June 1665 near where my mom was born 300 years later. He was lived at the same time as Vermeer, Rembrandt, Leeuwenhoek and Frans Hals. (Shout out to the Dutch for being meticulous record keepers). Baltus Ulrich knoopmaker * My family heirlooms - Zeeuwse knoppen, buttons from the province if Zeeland. Dutch button jewelry of Zeeland from my mom and travels in Nederland. My 5x great grandmother, Krina van Alderwereld was born there in Vlissingen in 1741. * The sea can be unforgiving....

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L.C. Van Houten
Philadelphia Handcrafted - Creek goes to Philly!

Philadelphia Handcrafted - Creek goes to Philly!

I'm just back from the American Handcrafted Trade Show - one of the last remaining large shows where gallery owners, museums and other shops who VALUE handmade gather to connect.  It was warm for Philly, but I forgot my scarf so here I am using a pair of tights to stay warm: I only had a bit of time to walk around after I finished setting up my booth (picture below) so I wandered around City Hall Here are some moments: Then I went and got food for the week: a fresh baguette and Manchego, citrus Soul Food and Amish...

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L.C. Van Houten
Tattoo Culture in the Victorian Era

Tattoo Culture in the Victorian Era

As tattoos become more socially acceptable for all walks of life, it's worth remembering that this is nothing new. In many cultures the world over, tattoos have long served as reminders of loved ones, symbols of journeys and substitutes for jewelry - and the Victorians were no exception.  The expeditions of James Cook in the 1760s introduced several tattoo traditions to nautical communities in Europe. Captain Cook also brought back a young Ra'iatean man, mistakenly known as Omai but his name was pronounced "Mae." He was the second Pacific Islander to visit Europe and was embraced by aristocratic society and met King George during...

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