Author Archives: Craftivist Collective

About Craftivist Collective

We are a group of people who marry activism with craft. Our Manifesto is: "To expose the scandal of global poverty, and human rights injustices though the power of craft and public art. This will be done through provocative, non-violent creative actions." We do craftivism projects as individuals and groups all over the world and would love you to join in on the fun that trys to have a positive effect on the world. All events are open to all, anyone can take on one of our projects we just ask for photo evidence and your thougths for our blog. If you feel you need more support to deliver a project just ask! :)
  1. Sarah Corbett giving a free talk in Brighton

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    Poster by Brighton Etsy Team

    Poster by Brighton Etsy Team

    All are welcome :)

     

    Organised by the Etsy Brighton Group, come and hear Sarah Corbett, Founder & Director of Craftivist Collective talk about her journey into craftivism, her methodology and more. You can also buy her signed book, DIY kits and more on the night too.

     

    All info here.

     

  2. Join us for come craftivism at London’s “The Make Escape” Tuesday 29th July

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    When was the last time you fancied doing something a little bit different after work? Maybe you’re too broke for a meal out, there’s nothing on at the cinema, you don’t want to stay out too late, are not in the mood for the gym, feel bored of sitting in the pub or just want to get away from your day job, and do something creative?

    That’s what The Make Escape Craft Night is all about: letting you forget about the stresses of your day, offering a place to hang out, meet new people, catch up with friends and learn something new, all for free. Founder Momtaz Begum-Hossain explains: ‘The craft night phenomenon is historic; quilting groups, sewing circles and knitting groups have always met, but what we do at The Make Escape is ensure it’s accessible to all. That’s why our nights are completely free to attend and every single participant gets to ‘make and take’ something home, assisted by the most talented designer/makers in the UK.’

    We love The Make Escape run by the super-lovely founder Momtaz. This will be our third time we are involved in one of these crafty nights and we can’t wait to see how our new Craftivists Garden #wellmaking project goes down with everyone who goes (eek! I’m quite nervous). So please do come along to:

    The Make Escapes: Village Fair Craft Night Tuesday 29th July 2014

    7:30pm-11pm, Hackney Attic, (5th floor Hackney Picturehouse), 270 Mare Street, London, E8

     

    Village Fair Make Escape poster by The Make Escape

    Village Fair Make Escape poster by The Make Escape

     

    Each month there are themed workshops run by special guests. Over the last year guests have included fashion designer Rosie Martin from DIY Couture, Man Embroiderer Mr X Stitch, The Great British Sewing Bee contestant Tilly Walnes, Stitch London founder Lauren O’Farrell, author Perri Lewis. There’s also a regular Collage Corner, a Makers Market where artisans can sell their work without stall hire, a Knit & Knatter spot where beginners can pick up needles for the first time and learn to knit, a licensed bar, and music provided by resident DJs The Spinning Yarns.

    This month we are the special guests with our Craftivists Garden project! We will be doing a little talk on what the project is and then getting you crafting and chatting through our wellbeing questions.

    join our new project Craftivists Garden

    join our new project Craftivists Garden

    Join us for this summer spectacular bringing rural idyll to Hackney with an evening of crafty activities that celebrate the great British summer fair. As well as the usual workshops and music us craftivists will be inviting you to join in our new campaign #wellmaking.

    The Make Escape’s resident woolley experts will show you how to knit or crochet your own flower while textile artist Purple Claire will be leading a session on embroidering flowers alongside craftivist volunteers (if you would like to help us on the night please get in touch here) . Flowers created on the night will form part of The Craftivists Garden Project and will go on display next year. If you don’t have time to finish your flowers you can take it hope to carry on contemplating whilst crafting.

     

    Craftivists Garden #wellMAKING project small flowerbed that will hopefully grow into a large flowerbed by January 2015. Photo by www.tomalprice.com

    Craftivists Garden #wellMAKING project small flowerbed that will hopefully grow into a large flowerbed by January 2015. Photo by www.tomalprice.com

     

    On the night there will also be:

    Prize winning corsages

    Sadly we are not having a cake contest but you can still make and wear your own corsage with help from sewing expert Katie Farrell who runs creative workshops and sewing parties at The Sewing Circle.

     

    Corsages. Image by The Make Escape

    Corsages. Image by The Make Escape

     

    Collage corner

     

     

    Paper Bunting image by The Make Escape

    Paper Bunting image by The Make Escape

     

    A fair wouldn’t be the same without bunting – make your own themed paper bunting to take home with you or colour, cut and paste to your hearts content – we have a host of inspiration including vegetables and cakes to create and colour.
    Tuck in!
    You can now order food at the bar which will be delivered to you in your own lunchbox which you can munch into as you craft.
    Entertainment!
    Resident DJs The Spinning Yarns will be on the decks but we’ll also be joined by some actual, real, Morris Dancers! Expect some country games too and possibly a tombola….
    As ever doors open at 7.30 and we craft through to 11pm. All activities are drop in. The Craftivists will be giving a talk at 8.30pm about their #wellmaking campaign so make sure you get there before then!
    If you cannot attend this event, don’t forget that you can still get involved 0n  your own or in a group using our craftivism kits anywhere in the world, blogging about your activities for this website, commenting and sharing what we do. We are a small social enterprise relying on your support to continue to exist to support you. 

     

     

  3. Introducing the #wellMAKING Craftivists Garden!

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    *DRUMROLL* 

     Ladies and gentlecrafters, we are thrilled to finally be able to share with you our new project… 

     

    The #wellMAKING Craftivists Garden!

     

    This exciting collaborative venture will show how craft activities can help improve wellbeing by involving participants like me and you in the fun, connected, sensory and mindful process of making things.

     

    Craft. Connect. Reflect. Challenge. Grow.

    This is a unique project that goes beyond seeing  craft as a relaxing tool but seeing craft as an incredible tool to help us connect, challenge ourselves and help us grow and flourish in our lives in different ways and help us see how we can change the world one stitch at a time.

     

    If you’re based in the UK, we’d love you to join in and hand-embroider, knit or crochet a flower for our #wellMAKING Craftivists Garden, while reflecting on the importance of wellbeing and what we need in order to flourish as individuals and as a society. 

     

    Craftivists Garden #wellMAKING project small flowerbed that will hopefully grow into a large flowerbed by January 2015. Photo by www.tomalprice.com

    Craftivists Garden #wellMAKING project small flowerbed that will hopefully grow into a large flowerbed by January 2015. Photo by www.tomalprice.com

     

    The World Health Organisation defines ‘wellbeing’ not as one but as three things:

     

    1. Realising our potential (not comparing ourselves to others or trying to be someone else)
    2. Coping with daily stress (small things that affect all of us daily)
    3. Contributing productively to society (not just focusing on our own direct physical and mental health like you might think!)

     

    the 3 elements of wellbeing hand-embroidered onto a fabric flower

    the 3 elements of wellbeing hand-embroidered onto a fabric flower. Photo by www.tomalprice.com

     

    Many of us have read about or experienced first hand how craft helps people’s wellbeing, and we believe it is also a beautiful tool for us to reflect on how we can improve the wellbeing of those around us in our communities and in society. 

     

    Craft is a lovely way to keep us optimistic and striving for better things; it’s a great tool to think about challenging and sometime uncomfortable thoughts (like how we all impact each other and planet) with the comfort of craft to help us not go into despair or feel disempowered.

     

    The project: 

     

    We want each flower to represent you as a flourishing flower in our garden (which itself represents society, obvs!) and the time you have taken to deeply think about wellbeing for you and others. We’ve also created an app to collect your private answers to our questions for us to then present to the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Arts & Health in January 2015, to provide evidence of the power craft has to improve our society. And we’d love you to join our #wellMAKING Garden Party in January when it is confirmed.

     

    All you need to get involved can be found here &  at www.craftivist-collective.com/wellMAKING :

     

    Download our app to take part in this project on your iphone or android phone

    Download our app to take part in this project on your iphone or android phone

     

    We are really excited that we will have a virtual garden map thanks to an app that will allow you and other participants  across the UK to upload photos of your work and location (you can keep this vague if you like) to show your crafted flower blossoming alongside others in our garden. 

     

    The #wellMAKING Craftivists Garden UK project is being run in partnership with Falmouth University, Voluntary Arts and Arts for Health Cornwall & Isles of Scilly, and is a Connected Communities project supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council

     

    To find out what each of our partners has to say about the project & updates on our progress do keep checking www.craftivist-collective.com/wellMAKING

     

    our Craftivists Garden #wellMAKING  kit includes, fabric flower (all unique), coloured thread, needles,  double-sided colour instructions sheet & facilitators sheet all in a little ziplock bag. Find it on Etsy

    our Craftivists Garden #wellMAKING kit includes, fabric flower (all unique), coloured thread, needles, double-sided colour instructions sheet & facilitators sheet all in a little ziplock bag. Find it on Etsy

     

    So let’s craft, connect, reflect, challenge so we can grow as individuals in society.  Come join  this unique project to  think beyond craft as a relaxing tool into a tool to help us strive and flourish in our lives in different ways and change the world one stitch at a time…. x

     

     

    PS If you are not a UK resident don’t be upset; we have lots of other projects you can take part in on your own or in a group on our Project Page here and you can buy a kit for help in our Etsy online shop. We hope to make a Craftivists app for worldwide use in 2015, so watch this space! :) x

  4. ##sewinspeakout Schools craftivism project with World Aims in Methodist Schools

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    Late last year (2013) I delivered a talk and workshop at World AIMS annual residential weekend with Methodist School students & teachers from across the UK. There were approximately 70 students and teachers in the session and feedback from all ages was really positive. Teachers spoke about how they could use craftivism in their Global Citizenship classes as well as art and textile classes. All teachers received a copy of our A Little Book of Craftivism to take back to school with them for inspiration. World AIMS, students and teachers enjoyed the session so much they asked us to create a national schools project with them. 

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

     

    The craftivism Love Fashion Hate Sweatshops #sewinspeakout project with World AIMS launched March 2014 to engage students and others on the issue of sweatshops and support War on Want’s campaign: Love Fashion Hate Sweatshops. We provided instruction sheets, case studies & questions for students to read and reflect on whilst they stitch their message as well as suggested content for their patch such as facts, quotes and slogans to provoke themselves and viewers to engage in this issue.

     

    World AIMS is a charity that provides a range of teaching resources and sources of inspiration for helping learners find out more about the world around them. It’s vision is: “A world where poverty and injustice are always challenged, in order that people may exercise their rights and live with dignity”. 

    Students and teachers have been asked to stitch patches (that look like our Mini Protest Banners) for a large banner that is now on display at Methodist Conference. 

     

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

     

     
    World AIMS Manager Sarah Corris wrote that schools have “chosen to express their voice through stitching.”

    “It acts as a reminder that the small action of an individual has caused a much bigger reaction to a wider audience, posing a question, forcing us to stop, think and reflect, perhaps motivating us to take action with those in a position to change these conditions.”

    “The variety in the messages stitched in our banners is vast, yet we all united behind the same general principle, that we need our government to change their policies to demand that fashion companies respect the rights of their workers.  We know that this will only come about by as many people as possible speaking out and putting pressure on those in a position to change laws.”
    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

    “The campaign is still going and what has been really inspiring to see is how the campaign has spread from beyond the schools to members of Methodist Women in Britain as well as children from Methodist Churches.”

    We have now exceeded over two hundred banners, from at least eight of our schools.  There are currently some of the mini banners on display at the Methodist Conference and the aim is to do a hand-in to Downing Street in mid September and we look forward to inviting some of our students and staff to attend this event.  It is also fantastic to see the campaign continue to grow in strength via twitter, so please keep the campaign alive by tweeting about it using the hashtag #SewInSpeakOut, It is also not too late to produce some banners over the summer that we could also hand in to Downing Street!

     

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

     

    “I have been astounded by the strength of feeling behind this campaign from the students involved.  This only seeks to highlight how young people have a voice and also have the power to use it.”

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

    Tweets from participants on this craftivism project

     

     

    Craftivist Collective is a social enterprise that relies on your support! If you enjoyed this blog post, please comment or share.

    Do visit our shop too, where all profits support the work of Craftivist Collective. You can also donate via Paypal. 

    If you would like to write a guest post for the Craftivist Collective blog, email us at hello@craftivist-collective.com

     

     

     

  5. Join us at Wilderness in 4 different ways

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    Join us at Wilderness Festival 2014: the multi-award winning 4-day festival combining live music, contemporary arts and an array of theatre, craftsmanship and dining experiences & we can’t wait to be part of it!

     

    Wilderness Festival 2014. Image from www.wildernessfestival.com

    Wilderness Festival 2014. Image from www.wildernessfestival.com

     

    We will be taking part in 4 ways:

     

      1. Wilderness School workshop: 

        We even managed to have a little banner outside the Treasury in London about the injustice of tax dodging & how the Government can put policies in place to change that

        Example of one Mini Protest Banner hanging up outside the Treasury, London

        Introduction to Craftivism & how to make a Mini Protest Banner. Sunday 10th August 11:30am – 12:30pm. Price £12 (including a craftivism kit worth £10). Book your ticket hereRan by Founder of Craftivist Collective Sarah Corbett you will learn the classic skill of cross stitch whilst also learning how to use your talents, passions & actions to make the world a better place for people & planet. You will start creating a cross-stitched Mini Protest Banner about an issue you care about and hang it in a relevant public space to provoke thought and discussion. By making it small and hanging it off eye level, people have a sense that they have chosen to engage with the message, rather than it being forced upon them. Sarah will also tell you more about the benefits of her approach to craftivism and the methods you can use. Plus it’s a great opportunity to meet like-minded people and become craftivists together. All materials are provided including fabric, thread, needles, cable ties, a label, instructions and a kit to put them in to take home if you don’t finish the project. Plus additional Craftivist Collective products are available for purchase  after class (such as our Little Book of Craftivism and other craftivism kits).

      2. State of the Nation talk  at Secret Forum tent- talk & discussion with our founder Sarah Corbett:

        Secret Forum, Wilderness Festival

        A toolkit for a better century, this epic interactive tag-team roundtable town hall meeting brings together some of our best creative and political minds to openly discuss realistic options for change with the public. Expert witnesses present valid alternatives to giving up and dropping out. This is Question Time for the millennial doer, a toolkit for change and an antidote to the bullshit.

        Featuring:
        George Monbiot (professional trouble-maker)
        Zoe Williams (writer, bon viveur)
        David Babbs (38 Degrees)
        Danni Pafford (Move Your Money)
        Sarah Corbett (craftivist)
        Ewa Jasiewicz (No Dash For Gas)
        Doug Richard (CEO School For Startups)
        Gregory Sams (chaos theorist)
        Ian Goldin (Director, Oxford Martin School)
        Oliver Burkeman (author of ‘The Antidote’)
        Robert Rowland Smith (writer, philosopher)
        And a very special guest soon to be announced!

        Hosted by Jolyon Rubinstein (The Revolution Will Be Televised)

         

      3. Now Live Events tent: talk & short craftivism activity by Sarah Corbett 

      4. NOW Live Events at Wilderness. Image by www.wildernessfestival.com

        NOW Live Events at Wilderness. Image by www.wildernessfestival.com

        Craftivist Collective’s founder Sarah Corbett presents a talk & practical workshop about craft as a meditative tool to stop, reflect and act on injustice issues in a transformative and gentle way, creating a free NOW craft momento to keep. NOW Live Events are back in the Wilderness this year with an even bigger programme of rejuvenation for all ages, designed to make us ditch our phones, stimulate our senses and jolt us back into the present through artistic activities. The NOW tent and other areas around the site will offer a place to engage with touch, taste, smell, sight and sound to savour the moment and lighten the mind. Through a celebration of literature, theatre, mindfulness meditation, performance, spoken word, visual arts, dance, feasting, poetry, wild swimming, music and workshops for children, we will be inviting the audience to experience the NOW.

      5. Part of the NOW Live Events installation recordings:

        NOW will also be creating specially inspired arts installations and an area to lie in the grass and listen to our NOW headphones, playing recordings of NOW authors and musings throughout the festival including our Founder Sarah Corbett.

    1. Wilderness Line Up. Source: Www.wildernessfestival.com

      Wilderness Line Up. Source: Www.wildernessfestival.com

     

    If you cannot attend this event, don’t forget that you can still get involved 0n  your own or in a group using our craftivism kits, blogging about your activities for this website, commenting and sharing what we do.

    We are a small social enterprise relying on your support to continue to exist to support you. 

  6. FREE Mini Protest Banner workshop at V&A museum

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    Join us at the last of our series of free events at the world famous s V&A museum in London this year sponsored by Coats Crafts (so sad we are at the end already!)

    The Craft Campaign: The Mini Protest Banner

    Sunday 7th September 11am-6pm

    Led by Sarah Corbett, founder of Craftivist Collective.

    Free, drop in (it takes at least 30minutes to take part).

    Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Rd, London SW7 2RL.

    V&A logo

    V&A logo

    Craftivism activity:

    Linked to the new Disobedient Objects exhibition at V&A join us to provoke thought and discussion on global poverty and human rights injustices in this Craft Campaign workshop. Whilst making your own colourful mini cross-stitched banner, you will have an opportunity to reflect upon issues you care about in a social setting. Hang your completed banner in a relevant public space to engage others in the fight for a fairer world. 

    Led Sarah Corbett, founder of the Craftivist Collective

    Supported by Coats Crafts who provide all of the craft resources needed. 

     

    Mini Protest Banner on theme of home

    Mini Protest Banner on theme of home

     
    A mini protest banner hung inside the courtyard of Somerset House during London Fashion Week September 2012

    A mini protest banner hung inside the courtyard of Somerset House during London Fashion Week September 2012

    We also need 10 Volunteers: to help from 11am-4pm. We will provide a free lunch & future ticket to V&A exhibition. Please email craftivist.collective@gmail.com if you are interested (basic cross-stitchexperience is needed).

    If you cannot attend this event, don’t forget that you can still get involved 0n  your own or in a group using our craftivism kits, blogging about your activities for this website, commenting and sharing what we do. We are a small social enterprise relying on your support to continue to exist to support you. 

  7. Craftivism for kids @AlsoFestival – Mini Bunting messages

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    I get asked a lot if we do craftivism workshops and projects for children. We focus on creating craftivism projects for adults to engage with global citizenship and what we can do differently to help not harm the world. However, over the years we have had children come with their parents to our workshops such as our series of workshops with the V&A & get a lot out of it too often staying for hours quietly taking part. I recently helped World Aims create a craftivism project for schools across the UK to take part in campaigning against sweatshops which has gone down well with pupils so far. Soooo…. when we were asked to do a children’s workshop at Also Festival this year as well as our adults workshop I took the leap and created a project specifically for children aged 6+. The theme of the festival was SPEED which was a perfect theme for us to ask the children to take part in our SLOW craft session.  

    Our Kids Craftivism project: 

    • Reason for making: Make mini bunting on ribbon with a message on to provoke yourself and others to think about how we can be our best selves using our talents, passions and action for good that doesn’t harm people or planet. For example, can we buy clothes and food that pay people enough to buy their own food to live off and not harm the planet. Can we smile more, look out for our friends and family &  stand up for people being bullied in school & tell our teachers about it?
    • What to do with your bunting: you can wear it as a necklace, belt, headband to start a conversation or hang it at home, in your school locker if you have one or somewhere else. 
    • Importance of the words: we want your words to link to how we can be good people & encourage others to make this world more awesome too! We don’t want to preach at people but we do want people to think about their actions and behaviours and whether we can improve on them.

    Examples of messages 

    Examples of mini bunting for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

    “Help not harm” example of mini bunting craftivism messages for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

     

    1. “Help not harm” is a great reminder to think about the actions we take and if they at all harm other people. For the kids we talked about making sure the people who bought our clothes were treated well whilst they made them such as getting enough money to live in a home and with food. Not working too many hours with no breaks like in school where we have breaks to play. 

     

    Examples of mini bunting for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

    “Empathise more” example of mini bunting craftivism messages for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

     

    2. “Empathise more” I thought ‘empathise’ would be a good word for children to learn. For the older children and young people I could ask them to put themselves in other people’s shoes whilst stitching on their bunting triangles. In this busy  world we live in often often easy for all of us (regardless of age) to do everything fast and on auto-pilot without thinking about the consequences of our actions. Shouldn’t we always try to be more intentional in the way we live and challenge ourselves to see if there is anything we can do better to support vulnerable people not harm them through what we buy, how we act etc? If we make time to empathise with others, we can be more loving towards them. 

     

    Examples of mini bunting for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

    “small acts = BIG change” example of mini bunting craftivism message for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

     

    3. “Small acts = BIG change” . It can feel overwhelming & depressing when watching lots of bad news on TV or in our newspapers. Sometimes we don’t have any power to change things like fires but often we do. If we all changed small habits to live more ethically, challenge discrimination and prejudices when we see them then big change can truly happen and has. Small acts are often what leads to longterm change, not 1 big act of heroism. American Civil Rights movement included people boycotting segregated buses for a whole year to change the law. I thought that with the children we could discuss how small acts of recycling helps us improve our world. 

     

    Examples of mini bunting for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

    “Service not #selfie” examples of mini bunting craftivism message for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

     

    4. “Service not #selfie”. The trend of photographing ourselves to share with others often on social media. Young people especially young girls are often caught up in this trend and there are reports that say it can cause narcissism, mental health, addition & even suicidal thought. The World Health Organisation says that wellbeing is 1. Realising our potential (not comparing ourselves to others) 2. Coping with daily stresses & 3. Contributing productively to society. It’s not just the absence of illness and part 3 focuses on service. It’s tempting to put short term happiness before longterm (like when I dream of buying another Freitag bag when I don’t need it!) so thought this bunting might gently & lovingly challenge the children their parents & friends (& me!) to think about how serving others also helps their own wellbeing more than taking #selfies. 

     

    Examples of mini bunting for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

    “Solidarity” examples of mini bunting craftivism messages for the kids to see. Photo by www.TomalPrice.com

     

    5. “Solidarity” is defined as by the Oxford Dictionary as “unity or agreement of feeling or action, especially among individuals with a common interest; mutual support within a group.” We often teach children & ourselves that to help others we need to  fundraising & give money or give clothes & other items. This isn’t the only answer to improving the world and it could be harmful if we see that the only way to help others is to give money or other items which can fuel the thought that we need to help people because they can’t help themselves. It’s a real worry of mine when people give money but don’t want to thing about how our lifestyles or actions could actually be part of the problem of some injustices such as avoiding tax,  climate change effecting the poorest people in the world and our role within the sweatshop-filled fashion industry.  We didn’t stop apartheid in South Africa by only fundraising. Most systemic injustices are changed when we change our understanding, our habits, our consumer choices, our priorities and we work together in unity, using our different talents and skills, in respect and with dignity. I thought this would be a great word for the kids to learn and also use their “pester-power” for good. 

     

    The activity itself:

    Our production line of resources at the craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014. Photo by Charlotte Pearson

    Our production line of resources at the craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014. Photo by Charlotte Pearson

     

    Resources needed (and in our production line above)

    • We had clear cups full of different patterned pre-cut fabric triangles (each triangle was 2 pieces of fabric stuck together with Bondaweb to make the fabric stiffer and less likely to fray) all hopeful and pretty colours and including patterns with unicorns on! 
    • 5mm thick ribbon (red, purple, green, yellow) cut into approx 50cm each
    • Embroidery needles (size 5)
    • scissors 
    • embroidery thread (separated into 3 strands)
    • ziplock bags (to put their bunting in if they don’t finish it in the session
    • Fabric pens 

    Instructions :  Because we had over 40 young people at our event (!) we ended up asking them to all make mini bunting with the word ‘Solidarity’ so they could learn what the word meant & chat to each other about it. One said to their parent who came to check on them “it means working together”! :)  

    1. All the children lined up patiently, where given their zip-lock bag and told to pick 10 triangles for their word Solidarity & a piece of ribbon. They could pick the patterns they wanted. It was fun to watch how thoughtful they were on what triangles they wanted. Some wanted all the same colour, some wanted alternate colours and others wanted a big mix. 
    2. They then went to one area of the tent where Craftivist Mary sat with them and gave them a fabric pen to write the letters of S-O-L-I-D-A-R-I-T-Y on their triangles nice and neat. We asked them to do the letters in lowercase so it wasn’t shouty and preachy or aggressive.  
    3. They then put their triangles back in their ziplock bags & sat with Craftivist Anna & me to sew their triangles on to their ribbon using a running stitch that looks like this – - – - – - – -
    4. I helped them cut their thread the length of their arm from fingers to shouulder, separate their thread into 2 groups of 3 strands, thread their needle & put a little knot on one end. 
    Craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014. Photo by Charlotte Pearson

    Such a cool lovely kid at our craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014. Photo by Charlotte Pearson

    Craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014.

    Craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014.

    Craftvism kids session at Also Festival June 2014.

     

    The results: a group of lovely children who didn’t rush, were very careful with their needle and scissors, discussed where they would put their mini bunting (some in their gardens, in their bedrooms to remember to “work together with others to be kind”, in their school lockers) and throughout the festival it was lovely to see children wearing their bunting proudly as a belt, necklace or headband. We even saw some parents of children wearing their child’s craftivism piece and telling me that it got them thinking about what solidarity is too. 

     

    You can join in our craftivism projects wherever you are in the world, on your own or in a groups. We sell craftivism kits on our Etsy shop amongst other items if you want to make one for yourself or encourage a group of your friends to make theirs together. Our book ‘A Little Book of Craftivism’ is also full of tips, advice and projects to help you in your craftivism. Craftivist Collective is a social enterprise that relies on your support. If you enjoyed this blog post, please comment, share or visit our shop :) 

  8. Join us in Norway this July at SÅ festival for a seminar and workshop

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    Join us at SÅ Festival just outside Oslo, Norway this July 2014

     

    Join our Founder Sarah Corbett and 2 other craftivists delivering a seminar (Friday) and workshop  (Saturday) at the boutique festival SÅ Festival just outside Oslo in July 2014.

    SÅ is a Christian arts festival for people of all ages and stages in life across the globe to share common passion for creative subcultures rooted in their faith. The content of the festival will provide inspiration for a life filled with creativity, justice and peace- in unity with Jesus and each other.

    The festival organisers want the festival to be influenced by individual differences, allowing people to express themselves creatively. They believe that volunteers create community. Festival attendees will be able to experience an ownership of the festival through various contributions.

     

    Join us SÅ Festival, the small festival,  just outside Oslo, Norway this July 2014

  9. “Westleigh High School Craft Club’s first attempt to become craftivists…” by craftivist Barbara Powell

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    “My Craftivism” is a series: We’re always excited to hear about & spotlight craftivism projects that fellow craftivistas are involved in. It can really inspire us, challenge us and hopefully get us all thinking about what is effective craftivism. In this series we hope to offer a platform to craftivists to show and speak about their latest craftivism activities & their approach to craftivism (which may be different to ours). If you would like to share your own craftivism piece or event with us please do email us at Craftivist.Collective@gmail.com for more info :)  

    “Westleigh High School Craft Club’s first attempt to become craftivists…” by craftivist Barbara Powell

     

    For my sins I run an after school Craft Club which started two years ago following requests from pupils to learn to knit, sew and crochet. I’m more of an enthusiastic amateur than an expert, but I enjoy having a go!  We’ve got several members, boys and girls, in fact our champion knitter is a boy and he’s pretty good at cross stitch too!

     

    Barbara's school craftivism project - great way to get notice from politicians

    Barbara’s school craftivism project – great way to get notice from politicians. Fingers crossed it reachers David Cameron’s office.

     

    Being unable to crochet, I had to draft in our technology technician, Hazel, to help me out. Two years on I still can’t crochet, but that’s because I never get a minute to try, I’m usually untangling someone’s knitting, threading needles or looking for buttons!

     

    I think it’s really important for children to realise that one person can make a difference; it’s no good sitting back and saying ‘yes, that’s awful but I can’t do anything’, if everyone did that nothing would ever get done! 

     

    A cushion for their MP Andy Burham- that won't get lost underneath letters or emails will it?!

    A cushion for their MP Andy Burham- that won’t get lost underneath letters or emails will it?!

     

    That leads us quite nicely to our first attempt at becoming ‘Craftivists’. Every year my classes take part in the Send My Friends To School campaign. Back in the year 2000, world leaders promised that, by 2015, every child would have access to a primary school education. Time is running out and there are still 57 million children who can’t go to school. Every year the campaign has a different focus, this year it is disabled children.  We are asked to produce a piece of art work, this year a paper chain made up of individual ‘buddies’ to which we add a message to the Prime Minister. We’ve also written letters to our local M.P. the Queen and the Prime Minister. We’ve even managed to persuade the players at our local Rugby League club, Leigh Centurions, to make their own buddies to send to Downing Street.

     

    My Craft Club decided that we really ought to make sure our work stands out from the rest this year.  We came up with the idea of sewing our letter to David Cameron. We then decided to make it into a cushion so that it couldn’t get ‘lost’ under a pile of paperwork.

     

    We made another cushion for our M.P., Andy Burnham, just so he didn’t feel left out. We’re busy collecting all our letters and buddies together to deliver to our M.P. We’ll ask him to take them to London to give to the Prime Minister in June. Hopefully, they both will use the cushions to decorate their offices and be reminded of the campaign at the same time.

     

    Our next project is already planned; we’re going to make the Craftivist Collective’s mini protest banners, just as soon as Hazel and I have taught a few more pupils to sew!

     

     A big thanks to Barbara for her time and thoughtfyl answers. You can join in our craftivism projects wherever you are in the world, on your own or in a groups. We sell craftivism kits on our Etsy shop amongst other items if you want to make one for yourself or encourage a group of your friends to make theirs together. Our book ‘A Little Book of Craftivism’ is also full of tips, advice and projects to help you in your craftivism. Craftivist Collective is a social enterprise that relies on your support. If you enjoyed this blog post, please comment, share or visit our shop :) 

  10. Join us at Anxiety Arts Festival, Deptford Lounge: Tuesday 24th June 4pm

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    Join us at Anxiety Arts Festival in Deptford this June

    Join us at Anxiety Arts Festival in Deptford this June

     

    We are proud to be working with NOW Live Events at Deptford Lounge, London  as part of the  London-wide ‘Anxiety Arts Festival’ over June 2014. Our workshop is 4pm-4:45pm on Tuesday 24th June. Sarah is also making soft sculture bunting to decorate the venue with words on wellbeing. They will be up to see for the entire festival.

     

    We will be part of this jam-packed programme championing an innovative blend of arts and wellbeing activities for all ages to stimulate the senses, lighten the mind and savour the moment with some of UK’s most inspiring artists and thinkers, locally and beyond.

     

    We will be working with Now Events Live at the Anxiety Festival in London in June as well as Wilderness Festival in August

    We will be working with Now Events Live at the Anxiety Festival in London in June as well as Wilderness Festival in August

     

    THere will be  literature, performance, craft, poetry, visual arts, spoken word, music, mindfulness meditation, workshops for children and more. The programme includes Britain’s leading lifestyle philosopher Roman Krznaric, spoken word artist Simon Mole and Chill Pill Collective, mindfulness expert Tessa Watt and us, Craftivist Collective.

     

    “(NOW Live Events) rid us of the myriad modern-day distractions that stop us from embracing the fullness of the present moment…using unconventional artistic methods ” – The Independent

     

    All events will be FREE, apart from ticketed evening events on Monday, Thursday and Friday.

     

    AT DEPTFORD LOUNGE Tuesay 24th June 4pm we will be doing:

    ‘Craftivist footprint: a spoonful of craft helps the activism go down’

    Join us in making Craftivist Footprints at Anxiety Arts Festival in Deptford, London on Tuesday 24th June 4pm

    Join us in making Craftivist Footprints at Anxiety Arts Festival in Deptford, London on Tuesday 24th June 4pm

    We often reflect on the time to come or time gone by without really enjoying where we are now. We are connected to others and we have an impact as a local and global citizen (for most of us quite a daunting thought). It is easy to let life pass us by so why not craft yourself a physical footprint to help you focus yourself on the NOW and remember how to be your best self in your local community using your unique passions, talents & actions?

    In this workshop led by our Founder of Craftivist Collective Sarah Corbett, you will learn the classic skill of embroidery whilst also learning how to be a change-maker to make the world a better place for people and planet. You will create a fabric footprint for you to keep and you will receive support on what message to stitch on your footprint and suggestions of where to put it.

     

    2 MINUTE INTERVIEW by NOW EVENTS LIVE with our Founder Sarah:

    How does your workshop relate to being in the NOW?

    My approach to Craftivism is all about doing this slow repetitive craft action to help us reflect on our actions in the past, now and in the future and how we can be good, active, global citizens in all that we do to be part of the solution to injustices and suffering. Craftivism is mindful slow activism to stop, think and act more intentionally NOW

    What are you most looking forward to doing within your slot at NOW?

    I’m looking forward to creating a space and environment for participants to feel safe and open to how my approach to craftivism can benefit them personally, collectively and politically.

    Any tips on how the audience can most benefit from your workshop? 

    Politics is personal and so is the solution. I hope people leave feeling they know more about the different benefits Craftivism can offer and how they can use it in their life and work & become craftivists!

     

     

  • @NorthWestNosh: #craftivism encourages craftsters to engage with activism in our own quiet way. Sometimes the quieter the revolution, the louder it is heard.

  • @PrickYourfinga: At tonight’s #craftivist stitch-in we talked about what it must be like to be a politician, and how to activate change in our busy lives.

  • @Rin Simpson: My small act of craftivism will, hopefully, go some small way towards changing the world. But more importantly, it has changed me.

  • @storyofmum: I love the project – it’s really inspiring&creative & has really got me excited about activism again in a way I haven’t been since my teens!

  • @tomofholland: @Craftivists shows, inspires and facilitates craftsters to unite their individual creative powers to raise awareness of social issues.