On Shifting

On Shifting


The act of making things ourselves has in a lot of ways has become an impractical skill to learn, caused by a generational knowledge gap, our fast paced lives, and the rapidly unsustainable trajectory of a society driven by capitalism. The forces that make it necessary for us to depend on needing more, faster, and cheaper separate us from ourselves and skew our perception of what the cost of our consumption is. That being said, I think finding ways to lessen our dependence on huge corporations doesn’t have to mean going without, doing it all yourself, or having to buy highly priced things handmade by other people.  It is not any individual's fault that this is the way of the world, and it’s certainly not on us to have the answers, but it can be within our control to be brave and steadfast in our choices.  If I’ve learned anything in this life, a true path to self sufficiency doesn’t lead anywhere in a vacuum, but can be rooted, tended, and grown in our relationships with the immediate community we’re part of.  There is a lot of joy and relief to be found in knowing we are not as disconnected as we may feel from everything around us, and that humans have created community through sharing craft for as long as history is documented. I have always felt connected to material, but wasn’t always capable of making the wild dreams in my head come to reality.  Studying the art of patternmaking filled in the missing piece that allowed me to connect with material in a meaningful way. Whether your dream is to exhibit in museums, or to make clothes from your living room floor for yourself and those you love, anyone can learn these skills with the desire to learn, a pencil, and by simply showing up.  I want to support people in finding the unique joy and empowerment that happens in the process of making things alongside others. I hope to help people move through things that might be holding them back, like all my own mentors and teachers have helped me do.

Trusting my gut has been sending me down some new paths this year. The truth is that making my studio practice my main source of income isn’t serving me or those around me in this season of my life. I am not done making art but I am done making myself feel guilty for not always being able to keep up with the demands of running a business. My reality is that I am a mom with a toddler, and limited time and resources. It feels so clear to me that sharing skills is a better way to practice what I do, and honor the values that I hold dear. When I am teaching I feel expanded in my heart and mind, and moving into this work is how I believe I can be a small part of something greater than myself. I have been offering private lessons on making, sewing and in general whatever students come to the table with and it has been so wonderful!  If you’re local to western NC and are interested in classes with me, you can find more info and booking options here: https://needlebones.com/products/sewing-class

I am also excited to share that I will be stepping in to teach some patternmaking classes at Asheville School of Apparel Arts starting this spring! Being able to take part in the magic happening there feels like such a full circle space to land in for me.  Anna Toth has created such a special container for supporting people in practicing this art, and the curriculum she teaches is the same one that I studied nearly 15 years ago. Learning patternmaking changed the course of my life, altered forever my understanding of the value handmade objects hold, and deeply informs the way I approach making to this day.  If you are interested in learning the art patternmaking and want more information on the curriculum taught at Asheville Apparel Arts, you can find more information on that here: http://ashevilleapparelarts.com/classes

I hope to connect creatively with many more people this year, and if you or someone you know may feeling that way too please reach out or share!

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