Being creative and helping others have been important themes in Patricia Cliggott’s life for as long as she can remember. This year, the two have intertwined as inspiration for the Lovingkindness Holiday Gift Show. Highlighting a fascinating collection of select gift items, the show helps pay for providing homecooked meals to Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard clients and their families, a cause close to Ms. Cliggott’s heart.
With a gift for art and design, Ms. Cliggott’s endeavors have included creating and selling enamel jewelry as a student at Skidmore College, managing a large crafts gallery, and teaching art to youngsters at the Norwalk Seaport Association and elsewhere in Connecticut. Later she taught art programs at the North Easton and the Boston children’s museums.
After moving to the Vineyard some 20 years ago she taught art through a M.V. Museum (then Dukes County Historical Society) program and eventually returned to her own art work, making and selling floor cloths and then clothing.
Her concern for others began early. As a teen she was a volunteer hospital “Candy Striper,” later took part in charity fundraisers, and often lent a hand to those in need.
Five years ago Ms. Cliggott’s father died, a devastating and draining loss. She turned to Hospice of M.V., discovering that the agency offers free bereavement counseling, even for those whose loved ones had not been their patients.
Ms. Cliggott, who often prepares meals for friends, began making food for Hospice staff in gratitude for the help. Soon she was preparing occasional home-cooked meals for Hospice clients or families. She recalled how hard it had been to cook and eat when she was grieving and wanted to ease the way for others. Preparing the meals was a comfort. “It helped me heal and it fed me,” she said.
Beyond helping defray meal costs (a percentage of the proceeds go to that cause), Ms. Cliggott said the show exemplifies Lovingkindness in many ways. She is delighted to offer artisans the opportunity to show and sell their creations while aiding a good cause. She likes selling quality gifts that customers can feel good buying, knowing they are supporting Hospice meals and creative Vineyard neighbors. For Ms. Cliggott, it’s about people helping and supporting each other.
“It’s all of us together, it’s how we live on the Island,” she said.
Set up in Ms. Cliggott’s welcoming West Tisbury home with assistance from her friend Daphne Everett, the show is inspiring and intriguing, a peaceful haven in a busy shopping season. Among the unique handmade offerings are leather wrap-style bracelets and exotic feather earrings by Jeanie Hay-Sternbach, Emma Young’s greeting cards individually printed with seasonal designs. Sarah Crittenden has hand-dyed gossamer silk scarves in delicate pastel shades using all local flowers and vegetation.
Polished rose quartz crystals are heaped on a table, glowing like magical fruits. Eric Carlsen offers these as well as amethysts in various sizes, and crystal pendants too. Adding to the glow are Krishana Collins’s amaryllis blooms, paperwhites, and lady slipper orchids nestled in wooden planters.
Ms. Cliggott presents a line of yoga and loungewear including yoga pants, long- and short-sleeved tees, hoodies, and cozy sweatshirts. These are all printed with a graceful Tibetan calligraphy design meaning “Joy” by Buddhist teacher Tsony.
She shows practical but pretty aprons, towels, and totes printed with a country chicken design by Indaia Whitcombe or Michelle Ratte’s busy buzzing bee. Silkscreen printing is by Basement Design, Oak Bluffs. Her “Lovingkindness to Go” features a sturdy canvas pouch packed with cloth napkins and silverware for two, an attractive and environmentally friendly alternative to paper and plastic.
For the littlest on your Christmas list there are perky books crafted of bright colored felt, printed shirts, and knitted Nepalese hats that are just right for children. Find handmade, healthy dog biscuits for Fido and try crunchy dehydrated Kale Chips using farm-fresh kale, an addictive snack. Zephir Plume’s home-brewed Dandelion Bitters are tasty drops for a refreshing beverage and digestive aid. Grace Collins has concocted an aromatic healing Cedar Salve and Love Elixir for holiday good will.
Bodhi Path Buddhist Center is displaying thangkas, which are brilliantly colored Tibetan wall hangings, delicious oatmeal maple nut granola and more.
Lovingkindness Holiday Gift Show, Saturdays and Sundays, 10 am to 4 pm, until Christmas. 129 Indian Hill Rd., West Tisbury. For more information, call 508-687-9847.