Sewing, cloth, creative remaking

Each season we have been organising practical workshops, artist’s pop-up events, ways to explore making stuff inventively, ethically, environmentally. We are very happy to consider new projects, so please get in touch to discuss any ideas you might have. Sign up to our email list to be the first to know about practical workshops at GroundWork.

Our regular sewing table

This began as an inspiring Visible Mending workshop with Kate Sekules in summer 2018. We enjoyed it so much, we carried on meeting on Saturdays. Absolutely no skill is needed – just bring along anything you want to hand-sew or mend, preferably visibly.

Our first Visible Mending workshop in 2018 with Kate Sekules

For a time we continued to hold a drop-in sewing table on Saturday afternoons from 2-4, to sew and chat, at our big table upstairs. These are now temporarily suspended while we regroup and think further about how to carry on.

Creative Remaking

Come and join in

We are talking about organising some bigger skill-sharing workshops which can lead to a chance to exhibit some pieces in GroundWork Upstairs. Contact us here if you want to be kept up to date, or drop in on one of the regular Saturdays.

During our initial sewing workshops, we also discovered that several members of the group have tremendous skills and experience in design, in all kinds of sewing techniques and pattern-cutting. So we are gradually bringing more of those skills into play.

Cloth of Kindness workshop

Sally-Anne Lomas, 30 June 2018

The Cloth of Kindness is a community led health and well-being textile arts project bringing together people of all ages and abilities to embroider their thoughts and experiences of kindness on individual patches which are then sewn together to make a Cloth of Kindness.  The first Cloth of Kindness was made by artist Sally-Anne Lomas for exhibition at the Burning Bush Gallery in Norfolk and was inspired by the writings of Julian of Norwich, C14th mystic famous for the phrase ‘All shall be well and all shall be well’ and the beautiful embroidered letters of Lorina Bulmer, resident in the Great Yarmouth Workhouse in the late C19th. 

Sally Anne Lomas
Sally Ann Lomas explaining the Cloth of Kindness project to a participant.

The first Cloth of Kindness in Kings Lynn was made for the Big C Centre, to be used by cancer patients having relaxation therapy during their treatment. The aim was to ‘enfold the world in love’ by wrapping up people having a tough time in soft warm textures sewn with words of hope and encouragement.

For the Groundwork gallery workshop recycled materials were used, warm coloured, plain and washable.  The Cloth of Kindness particularly recommended including materials that have a special emotional resonance – maybe from a piece of clothing that conjures up memories of happy times, special occasions, or much loved people.

Patches made in Cloth of Kindness workshop
A few examples of new patches made at the workshop.

The sewing skills needed to participate were basic and easily learnt.  Sewing workshops bring people into a supportive community. Sewing is a low energy, creative activity open to everyone and the focus on kindness is uplifting.