“When I found out there was a craftivist collective event in Glasgow… I had to go and this is what I found”

03 Apr “When I found out there was a craftivist collective event in Glasgow… I had to go and this is what I found”

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Craftivist Collective Event Glasgow Review by Laura Polson 

On the 18th of March a Craftivist Collective event was held in Glasgow. Here, Laura Polson an Australian media student and aspiring craftivist shares her experience and guide* to the evening. If you would like to blog for us please do email us. 

 

A group shot by Laura of our full table in cosy Cushion & Cake workshop venue. All images by Laura Polson

A group shot by Laura of our full table in cosy Cushion & Cake workshop venue. All images by Laura Polson

 

About me:

My first interaction with craftivism was quite similar to how most people might discover it, in fact it was the way Sarah the founder of the craftivist collective found it to. How? Well we googled it. In her googling quest Sarah found the term ‘craftivism’ coined by Betsy geer and not much else, which inspired her to start her own movement. Years later, when I googled I found this very movement – in the form of a newfound collective of craftivists including events and projects formed by Sarah. 

 

I was desperate to be a part of it, but there was a little problem… living in Australia almost a 30-hour plane trip a way, coming to an event wasn’t really a reality I could fulfil. But she also offered sewing kits! But alas as a student shipping costs to Australia put me off… Could I make my own!? Yes, but I wanted the guidance of the pack and the support of contributing to something bigger. So I waited. Until I got the news I would be studying in the U.K. for six months! 

 

Cushion & Cake shop & workshop venue owner: Pamela Clocherty. All images by Laura Polson

Cushion & Cake shop & workshop venue owner: Pamela Clocherty. All images by Laura Polson

 

My first package that arrived at my new accommodation was ‘the mini protest banner kit’ with a little book of craftivism to. I’d fulfilled one part of becoming a craftivist, but I had wanted to be a part of it something to interact with other and really understand my contribution. When I found out there was a craftivist collective event in Glasgow, only two hours from my university. I had to go and this is what I found:

 

Cushion & Cake workshop room - spot Sarah Corbett setting up! All images by Laura Polson

Cushion & Cake workshop room – spot Sarah Corbett setting up! All images by Laura Polson

 

Materials

  • A cute venue: ‘Cushion & Cake’ owned by the gracious Pauline 
  • Organic, fair trade AND home made ginger nuts teamed with the choice of apple or Scottish breakfast tea courteous of Pauline. 
  • The very founder of the Craftivist Collective – Sarah Corbett. 
  • 11 lovely ladies ranging from England, Scotland, Spain and Australia. 
  • Fabric Footprint packs. Filled with everything needed to craft your own special project.  

 

Craftivist Suitcase full of materials for the workshop. There was an extra small suitcase for the craftivism footprint kits. All images by Laura Polson

Craftivist Suitcase full of materials for the workshop. There was an extra small suitcase for the craftivism footprint kits. All images by Laura Polson

 

What to Do

  • Arrive at the adorable venue Cushion & Cake. Feel instantly welcomed by the attendees and the homely interior. Choosing your own antique teacup is very important (Note: one’s with “bling” may be popular). Use this ny online pharmacy no prescription ‘tea cup’ tool to appreciate the tea, along with the delectable biscuits. 
  • Introduce yourself: Have a laugh. Have a cry. Whatever you need to do to share your activism story or your interest in building one. 
  • Listen to the inspiring Sarah Corbett as she gives an introduction to the craftivist collective and details of her own craftivist journey.
  • Be introduced to tonight’s project – fabric footprints, where you will be creating a piece for yourself. Here, think about your journey as a global citizen what quote or thought would courage you to keep on the right path?
  • Choose a fabric footprint or shoe print. Be encouraged to take time with your quote. Google may also become a handy tool. 
  • If ready start stitching your quote or thought. Don’t rush enjoy the process of “Slow Activism”. Advice from Sarah is to “Don’t worry about mistakes – imperfections will only make your handiwork more personal and endearing.” 
  • Leave with a new bundle of crafty connections, a promising craftivist piece and a newfound skill in your activism tool kit.  

 

Sarah asked Pamela for ethical tea & biscuits for the craftivits. We arrived to loose left fairtrade tea (English Breakfast & herbal tea) and homemade ginger biscuits = delicious! All images by Laura Polson

Sarah asked Pamela for ethical tea & biscuits for the craftivits. We arrived to loose left fairtrade tea (English Breakfast & herbal tea) and homemade ginger biscuits = delicious! All images by Laura Polson

 

Own personal experience:

 

So there it is. I’d attended and actually been a part of my first craftivist collective event and as you can probably tell from my musings I couldn’t have enjoyed it more. 

 

Personally I came away of the event with a new found understanding of how I view myself and my contributions to the wider good. It was a perfect reflective time where I asked myself what is in my own personal tool kit? What skills do I find special in myself that have allowed me to advocate and create awareness around things I care about? But equally important I asked myself what do I need to hear or see to keep me pushing on? 

 

This last question was talked about amongst the group, as admittedly there are times in an activist’s life where you are overwhelmed and become tempted to give up. Allowing ourselves to share stories and difficulties in this safe and accepting environment it was a release but also a reminder to push on and once completed to keep our footprints close as a reminder we are on the right path.

 

*Story’s structure has been adopted from Sarah Corbett’s A Little Book of Craftivism. 

 

Craftivist Collective shop area for participants to have a look at. Most people bought a book for themselves or a friend plus badges, kits, gift cards or postcards. A great way to spread the message, learn more and support the Craftivist Collective to survive. All images by Laura Polson

Craftivist Collective shop area for participants to have a look at. Most people bought a book for themselves or a friend plus badges, kits, gift cards or postcards. A great way to spread the message, learn more and support the Craftivist Collective to survive. All images by Laura Polson

 

Photos and story by @laura_polson

If you would like to write a blog for us about an event, your experience of joining our craftivism projects or something else please do email us.

2 Comments
  • neville
    Posted at 07:54h, 27 November Reply

    inspiring , im so far in south africa and my heart is touched by your creative crafty ways, wish the program can be implemented here.

    • Craftivist Collective
      Posted at 17:29h, 27 November Reply

      Thanks so much for your kind words and it totally can be implemented in South Africa Neville!:) We have all the kits and tools you can order from our website plus advice on how to set up a workshop on the Contacts FAQ page and more. Just have a look through the website and you can find everything you need 🙂

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