Inspiration from Notre Dame

It was such a shock to hear of the Notre Dame in a blaze of fire. When you think of some of the most famous and long standing buildings in the world, you tend to imagine that they will be standing forever in all of their glory. But as the Notre Dame fire has so well illustrated these precious and beautiful buildings full of history and stories of ages past, are so fragile in this modern world.

It is so incredible to think of the millions of people that have past through the doors of the Cathedral whether to worship or just visiting. But even more so, is to think of the hands that built the place… the many skilled workers who chiselled each stone, stained each window and stitched each garment and alter cloth.

The biggest loss was of the towering ceilings that sadly collapsed during the fire. If you look at the photo below you can see just how high it was in comparison to the people in the photo. It just creates an awe and wonder of how on earth could skilled stonemasons could construct anything on this scale without the use of modern technology that we have today! It’s absolutely stunning and inspiring.

What is possibly the most famous element of the Notre Dame, are the stained glass windows – which have amazingly not been destroyed in the fire. They are spectacular, especially when the sun shines. These huge windows with intricate designs tell stories of the times of jesus, his disciples and other biblical stories, as well as saints since that time.

The colours are just so striking and beautifully balanced. I love how much they used the colours of blue and red together. It creates such a richness for the imagery and yet at the same time it still feels very much like a window that you can feel the blue skies on the other side.

It is a good reminder to really appreciate the beauty of what the old has to offer because it won’t last forever – nothing does. Since I have heard about the incident, I’ve kept being drawn back to look at the inspiration it has to offer. There is a part of me that would love to create an intricate piece of embroidery using stitches that were popular at the time it was built, using the windows as my main inspiration. However, at the moment I am just going to keep it in mind and perhaps one day I will sit down and stitch something as beautiful.

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