We’re Growing!

Catherine(right), a volunteer from UofL teaches Sobia(middle) and Jessica(left) how to knit

Catherine(right), a volunteer from UofL teaches Sobia(middle) and Jessica(left) how to knit

Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve been lucky to have a few new women join Fiberworks and some past participants have been able to return. On Monday, twelve women attended class and we practiced knitting and crocheting. Because we have a limited number of sewing machines, knitting and crocheting are a great group activity that allow all of the participants to work on the same fiber art skill together. It was also a great opportunity for some of the more experienced fiber artists to assist in teaching a skill.

Hiam, a long-time member of Fiberworks, helped Amal and Eman with knitting. Asma, who has been attending Fiberworks since she moved to Louisville last year, showed everyone a simple way to cast on to a knitting needle. Nircia, who started attending Fiberworks a few weeks ago, taught a few members how to crochet circles and granny-squares, which are the basis for a lot of projects and can be joined together to form blankets and afghans. We were also lucky to have several talented volunteers who helped to instruct the one-on-one knitting and crochet lessons. It was a nice break for the sewing machines, and although their mechanical hum was missing from the art room, it certainly was not quiet! The group setting and trying to learn a new skill allowed for a lot of conversation and the use of new vocabulary.

Esperance(right), a volunteer, guides Suda(left) in making a bag.

Esperance(right), a volunteer, guides Suda(left) in making a bag.

Throughout the rest of week, attendance has been strong and we have stayed busy. We got out the sewing machines out again and worked on a variety of projects! Suda and Sobia, who are both new to the Fiberworks program learned how to use a sewing machine for the first time. Lauren, the Fiberworks Coordinator, explained the basic parts of the sewing machine, how to fill a bobbin, thread a machine, and fix common problems that might happen while they are sewing. We like to educate the women on how to troubleshoot a problem they experience with the machine so they have the knowledge and confidence to fix it. Suda and Sobia took turns on a sewing machine and each made a bag using fabric of their choice. Suda chose to make a bag with small handles and Sobia made one with a drawstring. After one participant had to leave early, Suda moved to her own machine and with guidance from Esperance, one of our volunteers, finished her bag. Sobia finished her bag and it was fabulous! She has a background in Fine Arts and it has really shined through since she has been participating in Fiberworks. We are so excited to see what other wonderful things she will create!

Sobia, learning how to sew at Americana Fiberworks

Sobia, learning how to sew at Americana Fiberworks

This is the bag Sobia made the first time she used a sewing machine!

This is the bag Sobia made the first time she used a sewing machine!

Denim Day Patches

Block Stamping Tools

We took a break from sewing today to work on a very special project. Last December, Americana Fiberworks was approached by Louisville Metro Services Office for Women to participate in Denim Day, a day dedicated to raise awareness about sexual violence. Our Fiberworks artists are making unique hand-painted and stamped denim patches that will be available the week of Denim Day. The proceeds from donation collected for the patches will support Americana Fiberworks and The Center for Women and Families.

Denim Day began in 1999 when an Italian court said that a women could not have been raped because her jeans were too tight and she must have helped the man attacking her to take them off. Women working in the Italian government were angered by this decision and wore jeans to work to protest the decision and show support for the victim. They wanted to show the court that rape is never a woman’s fault.

Denim Day is now a day of advocacy and activism around the world. Louisville will be celebrating Denim Day on March 27th this year. Show your support for survivors of sexual violence by wearing denim on March 27th!

Today, two of our newest members, Sobia and Amal made patches using old jeans that the group received through a donation. They drew their own designs and carved out rubber blocks to make stamps. They then stamped onto the denim patches or hand painted different designs.

In the Art Room, participants and volunteers were busing stamping and painting Denim Day Patches

We will continue to work on this project over the next week. If you or someone you know would like more info about Denim Day or would like to get denim patches for yourself or a group you are involved with contact Lauren Humpert by calling 502-366-7813 or emailing her at laurenh@americanacc.org

Americana Fiberworks will be at the Louisville Metro Services Building (810 Barret Avenue, Louisville, KY) on Wednesday, March 27th from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM with Denim Day Patches if you would like to get one. The patches are free but donations will be collected that will support the Center for Women and Families and Americana Fiberworks!

Stamped denim is left to dry before being made into patches

Welcome to our New Blog!

Even though our site has been inactive, Fiberworks has been busier than ever! In December, Lauren joined Americana’s team as the new Fiberworks Coordinator. Since then, we’ve been busy organizing the classroom space, setting up a new store, recruiting new members, and practicing the fiber arts.

Fiberworks classes are now held Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Thursdays from 1pm-3pm in the Art Room at Americana Community Center

We hope you’ll check back here often to see what Americana Fiberworks is up to. A few upcoming events that we are excited about are Denim Day, visiting guest artists, working on a group quilting project, and the Buy Local First Fair. This spring will be full for the Americana Fiberworks and we are excited to share it with you.

If you would like to get involved with Americana Fiberworks, please call Lauren at 502-366-7813 or e-mail her at laurenh@americanacc.org.