Sunday, August 28, 2011

Waste reduction and crafters helping the community

At the studio we are always trying to minimize waste.  We have many strategies for sorting and maintaining our inventory of materials from start to finish.  When working with vintage sweaters, we first cut larger items like clothing (sweater dresses, pull overs, cardigans etc).  Inevitably there are always scraps leftover.  We sort these by colour and save them to make accessories like hats, mitts, armwarmers and legwarmers.  And after that we still have useable scraps.  They're pieces that maybe aren't suitable for our designs but things that would be good for other projects.  Anyone who sews or builds or crafts will know that at some point you have to draw the line with saving materials. 

So the scraps that we can't use get donated to local crafters and artisans.  I often advertise on craigslist and kijiji and anyone who wants scraps ranging from sweater pieces to woven cottons left over from bedsheets and dress shirts is welcome to come take some as they become available.

I've had many people including felters, quilters, teachers, community organizations and people starting up their own business come to make use of our left overs.  I was recently in touch with mother Ella and daughter Kyla.  Kyla Kirk is a teen who has been eager to get involved in many causes over the years.  She started out with fundraising campaigns but has since decided that she wants to become more deeply involved. 

Her current project, Pillows and More combines her talent for creating and sewing with her desire to raise money for those in need.  Kyla has been creating and selling pillows, pet beds and fabric accessories to raise money to travel to a developing country with the Me to We Foundation Youth Program in order to be part of the process of building wells and a school.

Visit Kyla's website to take a look at her creations and make a purchase to help her help others in need.

Congratulations to Kyla and her supportive mother Ella for working towards positive change!

If you're a local crafter, hobbyist or teacher who would like some fabric scraps for a personal project or a class you're teaching get in contact with me: to see what we have available!

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