I am the Vancouver ambassador for the Badass HERStory project.
Conceptualized by Shannon Downey (Badass Cross Stitch), Badass HERStory is a craftivism project meant to empower individuals, build community, and reshape narrative. It intends to honor the stories and voices of all women, female-identified, and gender non-binary humans.
How to Participate
Participants are asked to stitch/embroider “their story” onto a 12 x 12 inch piece of fabric. These panels will then be used to skin 3-dimensional structures in what will become a massive public art installation. Additionally, there will be an interactive, robust, digital catalog which will include photos of each piece and context from every contributor.
There are no rules about your story. You can use words, images, a combination (ooooh a comic!). In terms of mediums you are only limited by the fact that the final piece must be on a 13 inch x 13 inch piece of fabric with a 1 inch margin so that the pieces can be stitched together. Therefore, your creative area is 12 inches x 12 inches. You can quilt, embroider, cross stitch, felt, screen print, play with mixed media, paint, knit, all of the above!
More details will be announced on June 2. Sign up for the Badass HERStory newsletter to keep in the loop.
If you’re specifically interested in Vancouver details, please fill out this form too.
Since learning about arpilleras in high school home economics class, I’ve always been drawn to craft activism and using handicrafts for political purposes. I also enjoy connecting with individuals (other global activists) doing powerful work, especially when it crosses boundaries and divides such as location, background, socio-economic status, race, and gender. I have been involved in a number of previous initiatives, including #YASVB You Are So Very Beautiful by Betsy Greer, the Pussyhat Movement as a knitter, and a stitcher for the Social Justice Sewing Academy.
My Plans & Goals as an Ambassador
- I want to hold some local stitchups in Vancouver, BC, Canada and the surrounding Lower Mainland area. These plans are in the works. Message me if you’re interested in joining or co-hosting.
- I want this project to be accessible to individuals who may not have the existing skills. I love Kim Werker’s Mighty Ugly project for this purpose: you can craft and enjoy the process without becoming beholden to the picture-perfect result. The Badass HERStory website has indicated there will be lots of tutorials and video links.
- I want these meetups to be accessible to those who may not have the financial means to participate. I hope to seek donations of materials for those who cannot afford their own. I intend to hold some or all of the meetups in free spaces where a purchase is not required (e.g. public library, community centre, public park). I also plan to collect or provide a drop-off location for completed squares to save on shipping costs for others.
- I want the project to be accessible to those with different abilities, including physical and mental disabilities, and invisible illnesses. If there is any accommodations a participant needs, please message me and I will do my best to facilitate that.
Sign up for the Badass HERStory newsletter to keep in the loop with the project in general.
If you’re specifically interested in Vancouver details (meetups, learning, helping, etc.), please fill out this form too.