Every Piece of You is unique and important! Katie Abey has created this motivational 1000 piece puzzle, reminding us to celebrate the weird and wonderful pieces of ourselves in her usual fun and colourful style. The illustrations in this puzzle represent real people and their stories.
To celebrate Pride Month, we are promoting of Katie Abey's 'Every Piece Of You' puzzle. We interviewed some of the characters who were happy to share their input about their character and relationship with Katie.
Q1. Hi! Congratulations on being part of our jigsaw puzzle, Every Piece Of You! This 1000 piece puzzle is filled with magical and diverse human beings, including you! Can You describe the character that Katie has created for you?I am pregnant with our rainbow baby, Orin. It was a scary but empowering time, because I was pregnant after losing our May baby during the pandemic. I wanted a photo shoot to help me to remember being pregnant with Orin and my gorgeous, talented friend Hayley, who is a professional photographer, took my pregnancy photos. I stood in the snow next to a waterfall in Sheffield with my beautiful son Leo and enjoyed being pregnant. The feeling of Orin in my body and the hope of him. It was a special time for me, one of the most special times in my life. The character represents a highlight for me, a time where I felt help and free.
Q2. How do you know Katie, and how did you end up in our jigsaw puzzle?Another talented photographer friend, shot me wearing the most beautiful dungarees that I own. So my photo was on the Run and Fly website wearing Katie Abey's stunning positivity dungarees. I used this photo when Katie asked for people to take part in her photoshoot for new clothes on her website and she asked me and Orin to join her for the day. Then the date of the shoot was changed and so we couldn't make it. Katie sent Orin a babygro and me a t-shirt, the thank you that we would have received for the photoshoot. It was such a kind thing to do and ever since, I have a little relationship with Katie. I feel blessed to know about her work - it brings me so much joy.
Q3. Please can you share which 'Sparkly and Weird' parts of yourself you used to hold back?I used to feel that I had to avoid being called a 'strong black woman'. I made myself meek and acceptable, polite and understated. I policed my contributions to discussions, wore black to diminish myself and tried to avoid taking up space or making demands. I feel deeply about being treated with respect and refusing to take other people's bullshit and that is a part of me that I always used to hold back. It's been interesting having come along so far on my journey to who I am now because when I meet people who knew me dearly a long time ago, I can see that they expect something different from me and I am not prepared to hide who I am from anyone
Q4. How did you learn to embrace them?Through counselling and the love of people who love and welcome all of me. They showed me that there is space for me to be challenging, disagreeable and angry. There is space for me to wear whatever the fuck makes me feel happy and there is a need for my voice in the world. I am proud to be a fat, black, queer woman. I can be part of the change that I want to see in the world.
Q5. We are hugely proud of this puzzle and think the message is so important. Do you have any advice for people who are struggling to celebrate every part of themselves?Please take the time to surround yourself with people who embrace the whole of you. Seek counselling and help to ask for what you need and set boundaries with the people who love you.
Q6. Is there anything else you would like to add?Thank you for being given the chance to share all of who I am, it means the world to me to be able to take up space.