the little things

the little things

I have *maybe* been weaving more than mending lately, making so many little tiny tapestries and patches and testing different techniques along the way.

I even wrote a little book about it! (Ok, "book" is a strong word. Zine? Instruction manual? Whatever. It's included with our Darning and Weaving Bundle now, or as a digital download. You're welcome to pick one up and try tiny weaving for yourself! But, in poor form, this blog is unabashedly about me & my playtime, so strap in. PS - some are available for purchase during June 2024.)

Darning was my gateway into weaving, and as much as I love the practical creative outlet of visible mending, it's such a joy to experiment and make things just for fun. I'm certain that more eloquent artist-writers have said it better, but at some point makers just gotta make.

I don't consider myself a very prolific maker, I'm quite pragmatic about what I make - or maybe just perfectionist? Maybe both. Either way, I need to trick myself into making things for fun. And these little weavings were the perfect, concentrated punch I needed to just do something.

I've explored so many different textures, fibres, colours and materials in these ~2"x3" pieces. I've sampled classic weaving techniques from tapestry and "functional" streams. It's at a small scale, and I only have a simple shed, but the loom is so quick to warp and to weave up that no single one feels like that big of a commitment, which liberates the perfectionism a little bit.

It makes me so happy to share them as gifts, and to have my little sample collection showered with compliments at shows. I am going to experiment with offering a bunch of them for sale during the month of June, with $15 from every sale going towards the Harm Reduction program at ACCKWA.

I'll share more details on Instagram and newsletter, but the idea is Pay what you want, adopt my little creations so I can make room for more, and help support important community services in our neighbourhood.

From their website:

ACCKWA formed in Kitchener in 1987, shortly after Waterloo Region saw its first cases of AIDS.

Over 30 years later, we still run support groups, host a weekly testing clinic, PrEP Clinic, a HealthCare Hub, and ARCH Clinical Services, and deliver Harm Reduction Services. We have evolved to offer targeted prevention and outreach through the African & Caribbean Strategy, the Women & HIV/AIDS Initiative, the Gay Men’s Sexual Health program, the Youth Sexual Health program, and our Support and Peer programs.

CW below: drug overdose, death.

June is of course Pride Month, but the timing and choice for this fundraiser also aligns with some personal stuff in my life. Scott, me, and our friend Nakita just purchased a home! We are very excited about it, and would like to acknowledge the house's history as we fix it up and make it our own. One piece of our inherited history involves the overdose / drug poisoning crisis. We were sad to learn that a former tenant here died of an overdose in the early pandemic years. We want to honour that life by pitching in to prevent other overdoses.

For statistics and drug alerts specific to the Region of Waterloo, check out WRIDS

If you're curious to learn more about the poisoned drug supply crisis and its impacts in communities across Canada and the world, from the perspective of drug user activists, you need to listen to Crackdown Podcast. They do absolutely amazing work and I have learned so much thanks to their relentless, well-researched productions. They have a massive back catalogue that I am excited for you to catch up on and hear for the first time, you're so lucky. I appreciate their "nothing about us without us" and direct action in doing what they need to do in order to keep their communities safe. We all deserve access to the medicine and care that we need to stay well, and criminalizing certain substances or making them impossible to get only causes more harm.

From the Crackdown website:

Crackdown is produced by a team of award-winning investigative journalists and documentary radio producers from Vancouver, Canada. We believe that narrative form and nonfiction storytelling is a powerful medium for building connections, demystifying esoteric concepts, and seeking social change.

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2 comments

I like your small tapestries they are very creative looking/spontaneous. Good luck with your new farm house. Sounds like you have your work carved out for you folks. Best advice would be to take your time on renovating and your business. I love the look of your farm house; reminds me of some of the farm houses in France in the wine country.

Carmen Spiegel

I like your small tapestries they are very creative looking/spontaneous. Good luck with your new farm house. Sounds like you have your work carved out for you folks. Best advice would be to take your time on renovating and your business. I love the look of your farm house; reminds me of some of the farm houses in France in the wine country.

Carmen Spiegel

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