A note from the team

One afternoon, a colleague shared a funny story about his grandmother and her collection of TV remotes. He had found a drawer full of these gadgets tucked away in his home. The collection of remotes amused him, and his speculations around this collection amused us.

Why would she hold on to these TV remotes?
Who was she collecting them for?
And where were the TVs??

Our colleague remains clueless about the answers to these questions, but the story sparked intrigue: why do women collect?

We have often observed our own mothers, grandmothers, friends, and aunts collect (sometimes hoard) objects—from precious jewelry to plastic containers. These collections were housed in kitchens, bedrooms, cabinets and even locked up in cupboards. Perhaps this was their way of leaving behind a trace of themselves or to remember the women who came before them. Maybe they collected for their children or for the women who would come after. Perhaps it was merely out of habit, a custom or tradition passed down with no second thought.

We reached out to our extended network, asking them to remember women who collected and if they inherited any part or entirety of these collections. Their responses revealed heartfelt stories, curious collections and a glimpse into the inner world of many remarkable women.

For the second issue of IRL, we invite you to explore 3 rooms where these collections and their stories are housed.

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