16 Year Old
This Year's theme is
A page dedicated to helping you take the next step in our mindful stitch 'Sew What?' project and ask what you would tell your 16-year-old self, should you get the chance
A world that is challenged is a world that is alert and open to change. You are now at the second stage of this project to spread authentic and supportive messages through quiet, creative, mindful, and collective means. Please urge yourself to have the courage once again to challenge yourself and continue to rest in a group that believes you're worth it and belong. We're going to make a story banner in the spirit of the suffragettes and Artichoke's Processions 2018, which have both inspired this project. We're going to march with lantern and banner to spread understanding and gather support for the issues that women feel called upon to challenge this year.
Remember, 'challenge' does not just mean daring acts; together we will participate in another gentle challenge, as many will have nervous systems that have been stressed in recent times. I'm giving you permission to take some time out and relax.
By taking part with me you might be gently challenging yourself through seeing yourself as:
A CREATIVE - I believe (and I want you to too) that we are all creative. Can you make a mark? Then you're creative
A SEWER - Never threaded a needle before or for a long time? No problem. Together we will create something beautiful
WORTHY OF SELF-CARE - Read this point twice if you need to, but your mental and physical well-being is worthy of this time. If you need permission to have some downtime, then I give you mine. Challenge anxiety, stress, and depression
PART OF A COLLECTIVE - You are not alone, even when you physically are. We are all doing this together. You are now part of an International Women's Day tribe
HAVING AN INNER VOICE - It might be quite quiet but it's there. This activity will give you the chance to hear and listen
BIGGER - You're now part of something bigger, no longer small. There will be a collective consciousness created by using fabric and the breeze which refuses to be locked down
Make a difference and continue to be brave with me!
materials and equipment
you will need
Fabric that you can cut into a six-inch square that you
Like the design of
Know is a woven fabric
Feel enthused to add words to and embellish
whatever thread you have to hand that will be seen against the fabric ground
a pencil to work out your design
Bits and bobs to make your design feel complete to you
(if your fabric is a bit flimsy: a few pins and something to make it a little thicker like some stabilizer, coffee filter paper, baking paper, or double-layer your fabric to give it some umpff!)
What Is Mindful Or Slow Stitch?
I know we've looked at this before but I think it's well worth reiterating here before you start. Modern lives can be at an overwhelming speed. Our sewing activity will help you to stop, slow down, think and, develop possibly a new skill to improve mental wellbeing. We have one life that we know of. We deserve to live that life with peace.
Mindful or slow stitch uses a needle, thread, fabric, and simple stitches to create something beautiful; you don’t rush the process but enjoy the rhythm of the needle going up and down in this moment, aware of your thoughts, feelings, and the space around you. Trying something new like this will help you notice the world and achieve more balance. To get the most from this practice:
Give yourself a regular and fair length of time
Find a comfortable place where you won’t be disturbed; turn off any phones
As you sew become aware of your thoughts, but let them pass gently through your mind like paper boats floating away on a stream. If you become caught up with them, notice and gently bring yourself back to your sewing. You might have to do this many times – it’s normal
Recognise the world around you, really see what is happening. What noises can you hear; how’s the light in the room? Take time to notice the small things
Think about your materials. Think about how you use time, the Earth’s resources and, chances to connect with others
Find the rhythm in the stitching and enjoy the movement. If it takes time to complete what you’d like to sew, so be it. Keep it slow and know that you’re showing yourself care
Know true beauty is imperfect, enjoy all your artistic efforts
WHAT TO DO
WHAT TO DO
Get thread prepped
Choose your thread.
Anything will do, sewing thread, embroidery floss, spun yarn, wire, recycled thread from an old garment. Think about the colour, texture, thickness. Pick something you really like and can thread through a needle you have.
Need more help with splitting floss?
Get fabric prepped
Select your square. If the fabric is a bit thin or flimsy think about adding some density. You can do this by making it two layers thick, using fabric stabilser, coffee filter paper, more fabric, even photocopy paper. Pin your chosen stabilser behind your square.
Time for peace
Give yourself permission to switch off and feel peace for a certain time length.
Slow or mindful stitch will help you stop, slow down, think, and develop possibly a new skill to improve mental wellbeing.
Turn off those distractions and find a quiet spot.
Feel you're not worthy?
As you sew become aware of your thoughts let them pass by gently, easing through your mind like paper boats floating away on a stream. If you become caught up with them, notice and gently bring yourself back to your square.
Tune into your environment, the sounds, the light, the smells. Notice the small things.
Need more help finding your mindful?
Really turn up for yourself now and think about what words you would like to see sewn just for you to enjoy and absorb.
Use chalk or a pencil to sketch out the letters on your square.
Need some ideas?
Time to stitch
Take up your needle and thread and stitch. Enjoy the rhythm; notice your thoughts and let them float by without concern; feel the whole journey of your breath; even try to hear the sound of the thread pulling through the fabric.
Learn how to stitch letters?
Admire your creation. Keep it in a prominent place for a short time to remind you of the words you need to fully absorb and believe.
Make as many as you need to to feel complete.
Then pop it or them in the post for the collective story banner piece, to:
King Edward VI College
King Edward Road
I need your help to spread this positive method that could make many feel better, share as wide as you can.
Send your images and videos (should you wish to make one) to me to make a virtual gallery and share the love.
Need more contact details?