A Gypsy Soul


There are some people who were just born as creative souls.
Trudy Hibler is one of those people.
Trudy never sees anything as it is. She always sees what it can be. And with Trudy, everything has the potential to be magnificent.
She has a bit of a gypsy soul, having been born in central California, an area now caught in the midst of drought. But for a little girl, it helped plant the seeds of creativity.
“I remember my mom sewing,” recalled Trudy. “She didn’t sew much, but when she did, the results were always amazing!”
Trudy took home economics in school and learned the basics of sewing for herself, but that wasn’t her main creative outlet in those days.
She found that outlet on stage, and in front of podiums where she loved speech, debate, and theatre. But…it was the era of the embroidered chambray shirt, and Trudy took up embroidery, getting to know how much she loved color and what it could do for any project.
Now color is her best friend. She loves to paint, loving the difference just a coat of colorful paint can make on an old piece of furniture. She is known for her “shabby chic” touch, which creates something new out of something old, but still establishes the visual comfort of the item.
“Things should have a feeling of history,” said Trudy. “I love it when something has been re-made, but yet still looks as if it has been used and loved for years.”
Her “Ma’s Emporium” booth that she takes to farmers markets and art shows during the warm weather months celebrates that love of the old being new, and still very much treasured.
Trudy has been married for 27 years to a man she calls her “biggest fan”. She says she considers it a compliment of the highest form when he really likes a project she completes. She also has five sons, three daughter-in-laws and now three grandchildren. She wishes they all lived much closer, but sharing crafting projects with them is a way to emotionally stay in touch, despite the miles the separate them.
Trudy does not consider herself to be a creative person, but she says she is very good at finding other creative people from which she can learn. She learns from other artists, and from Pinterest and crafting tutorials on the internet.
“I really like to take an idea that I see, and then put my spin on it,” she smiled.
She sees the crafting world as a buffet.
“I like trying a little bit of this, and a little bit of that,” she related.
Among her favorite craft projects right now are using beads and crystals to dress up old light fixtures and candle holders, and making sun catchers.
“There is just something magical about the play of light on crystals and beads,” she said. She also recently re-made some old jewelry boxes, two of which went to charitable auctions. “It’s nice knowing those pieces have a new home, and at the same time they helped raise money for an important cause.”
And…after years of her sewing machine being stuck in the corner of her room, pouting about its lack of use, Trudy has started making aprons.
“That is what I love about crafting. You can just get lost in a project. You love doing it, and then it gets even better when someone else loves it,” she said. “It’s really as simple as that.”

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