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Monday, 22 April 2013

Sewing Art in School

Last week I was invited to return to my highschool for a couple of days to introduce art into the home-ec room, and sewing into the art room.  HOW COOL IS THAT!?  It was entirely cool for me.  My biggest regret with highschool art was that fibre was in no way part of that classroom.  Well, it is now!  ; )  I gave presentations to grades 9, 10, 11, and 12 on how I came to discovering this world I'm in now.  It was really fun - with the exception of giving the SAME 50 minute talk over and over EIGHT times.  After three presentations, I was so bored with hearing myself retell that story.  Still, I was a trooper.  On the second day, I had the same grade 11 & 12 kids back again.  So Mr. Fullerton (the art teacher) and I put together a little experimental fibre art project for that class.  It was cooool : )

he handed out some thick chunky watercolor paper

The students were asked to to a watercolor wash on them.

I provided thread, yarn, floss, metallics, and some inspirational books

Then the students were asked to stitch into the paintings, however they wanted and with whatever colors they liked.  I showed them a bit about selecting needles and how to audition threads.  Away they went!

sewing with silver

sewing with gold

some were stitching on a landscape

some embellished eye-catching abstracts

some gave up before they even began stitching (view into the class garbage can)

some were deeply thankful for the opportunity and went on to create masterpieces : )

That is whole point to why I got involved in this particular venture.  Not everyone is expected to enjoy every kind of art.  But everyone in a school art class should have an opportunity to explore many forms of art.
The art world includes FIBRE.  
And look!  Now theirs does too!  : )

The box I left behind.  It's now part of their classroom.

: )
linking to the Needle and Thread Network : )


Anonymous said...

That is wonderful that you gave them a chance to know and appreciate fibre art. I am deeply appreciative the my schooling included embroidery and sewing, wish I had understood that I could make it a career. I learned to embroider in kindergarten and first grade, we made felt egg cosies embroidered with daisies. My grandmother taught me to crochet and knit and somehow I taught myself to sew Barbie doll clothes and borrowed my Aunt's hand crank sewing machine to start making my own clothes when I was about nine years old. Then in high school (which I started at 11 in England) I had an amazing and very demanding sewing teacher who taught couture sewing. I have sewn all kinds of things, from baby and childrens clothing, bridesmaids dresses, drapery, boat reupholstery and quilting and now am enjoying making some fibre art. I find I sleep better when I have a chance to sew each day.
Love your work and your blog.
Vivien Levermore

Threadpainter said...

I liked the comment above and I, too, went through the same processes in my sewing machine /practical work before I realized I could do MORE with that machine of mine.
Hooray for you, Monika, for having this chance of taking it to the schools ... it isn't for everyone, but you may have opened up their world for a few of them !!!

Margaret said...


HollyM said...

What a wonderful and satisfying experience! I love the simple but very effective projects they did as well. Great idea!

CitricSugar said...

I'm so glad this went well for you! It looks like they learned a lot and enjoyed themselves to boot - best of both worlds…!

Margaret said...

I think that those students are lucky--even the ones who weren't entirely appreciative. We never know what might strike a chord and resurface at a later date. Like many of your other commenters, I learned to sew and do handwork at an early age, but it wasn't something I did regularly until many years later.

PrairiePeasant said...

Awesome! Do you think you could stop in at my daughter's art class while you are in Winnipeg? ;-)

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