Archive for the ‘FYI’ Category

Sewing Rebellion Production Shut Down


Dear Sewing Rebellion participants,

The Long Beach Sewing Rebellion will cease production during the relocation of the ILGWU.  Production will begin again on Sunday Nov. 9, 2014 during it’s new time of 5-9 pm.


Danke Frau Fiber and the Faux Fraus




SR partners with Long Beach Time Exchange


Long Beach Time Exchange, will be co-sponsoring the following Sewing Rebellions.   Come use time dollars to use how to sew!


  • Oct 27 – Halloween Costume Mending and Hoodie remake
  • Nov 17 – Festive napkins and table cloths
  • Dec 15 – TBT

January 2012 Memo to the People: A pause to reconsider our purpose.


The Sewing Rebellion has emancipated people from cheep disposable garments by teaching mending, sewing, remaking and pattern making for 6 years! This fall the Associated Press released a piece  (thank you Sean) about the Sewing Rebellion, and it has prompted a renewed interest in starting chapters.  We welcome Evanston IL Chapter, which is starting this Sunday. 

However, the Sewing Rebellion needs to reconsider the it’s current structure, and contemplate how to proceed in the revolutionary style which is at it’s core!   For the time being I will discontinue the instructions, and monthly emails, however please continue your individual commitment to STOP SHOPPING AND START SEWING!

Wishing you the best mending, altering and remaking in 2012! 

November Production: Answer to an email


November 2011 Memo to the People:  An email question

I am writing to you after having read an article about you and your company in the local newspaper this morning.   I would really like to continue the tradition my mom had of fixing and mending clothes but she passed away several years ago and I never really got to learn from her.  My wife is not a big sewer and it has become clear to me that if things are going to get mended, I’m the one who needs initiate the process.


I have a couple pairs of socks in particular that the heels and toes are wearing very thin but the rest of the sock that covers the ankle and further up the leg is just fine.  I do not want to throw them away because of this and I have not seen the pattern for some of these in that color (black argyle).  Plus, some of these socks are fairly thick like a winter wool grade!  My mom would use a big light bulb to darn with, covering the bulb with the sock, but that is about as much as I remember.


I am hoping that you may be able to help me by either sending directions/instructions or getting me in touch with someone knowledgeable in what you do for older clothes.  Thank you for taking the time to do what you do – I feel that America needs more folks like you as this is a tradition that (in my opinion) has been fading away and speaks to one of the core principles this country has lived by for decades – make it last!  When you make something, make it well and when something breaks, if it can be fixed, then fix it so it will last!  : )”


So with this in mind, dig through your sock drawer, find all those shabby socks, and check out this you tube video.  It’s my favorite darning video.  And you don’t need a mushroom, much like the writers mother a light bulb will work and so will a potatoe.


If you are looking for a Chapter in your community, here is the current list.

Chapter Meetings.
Brooklyn Chapter
3rd Sunday of the month, 4-6:30 PM, Sapcecraft 355 Bedford Ave., between 4th and 5th streets.

Los Angeles Chapter
Sunday November 20, 4:30-6: 30  Hands on 3rd, 8377 West 3rd Street, Los Angeles CA, 323.655.0515

Santa Rosa Chapter
TBA or email Bess

Frau Fiber and the Politics of Mending


Frau Fiber will present a workshop discussing and demonstrating how to hand mend garments.

Museum of Contemporary Art Denver

Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Craft activists discuss their work and lead three hands-on craft workshops. Pick your poison. Featuring Frau Fiber, self-described textile worker, the Ladies Fancywork Society, a Denver-based street graffiti crew, and Allison Smith, exhibiting artist at MCA Denver.

from the field – NYC: a little story about zippers


On a recent Thursday as I sat with the Fixer’s Collective at Proteus Gowanus in Brooklyn New York, I tried in vain to repair a broken zipper on a wallet.  A zipper which had broken much too easily, in my opinion.  As a repeatedly attempted to get those little teeth to interlock without success, I of course became increasingly frustrated and began to ruminate on the origins and evils of zippers.

They almost seem designed to break, don’t they?  What’s wrong with the traditional buttons, hooks and loops, tried and true fastening methods which have worked for centuries?  With absolutely no supporting evidence, just conjecture, I concluded that only industrialization could have made possible the invention and mass production of such an unreliable and infuriating device as the zipper.

“How’s it going, Theresa?” inquired one of my fellow fixers, and look of concern upon his face.  “Ah!”  I cried.  “Zippers are a post-industrial menace!”  And then thought it rather catchy, if I do say so myself.  And so it, well…stuck!!


Written by Theresa B

From the field: Bias Cut honors Los Angeles Garment workers


Last night I attended, Bias Tape a two person play about LA garment workers,  The play was a historical, autobiographical narrative, about two garment workers in Los Angeles.  One a sweat shop worker, who’s dialog created a portrait of the history of garments workers in American; home work, sweat shops, unions, triangle fire.  The contrasting character was an immigrant, who passed up the LA sweatshop to do one of a kind garments for Charro.  A high light for me was being reminded of a Broadway play “Pins and Needle” all the actors were garment workers,   There were some  disappointments: the sewing machine on stage wasn’t actually functioning, and the bias cut dress, was a cheep made in China, polyester, princess line, with no bias cut!  and the naive hand work in the video projection was a distraction from the professionalism of the characters being portrayed.  All in all the show was an interesting dialog between these two differing experiences in Los Angeles.

In conjunction with the show was an art exhibition, and the stand out project for the evening was “Care Instructions”  Leah, a Berkley resident is asking participants to swap out their labels for her alternative chair labels.  Here is the link to her site.

Her site also has some great links, tracking garment labor politics.

October Production Memo:


October Production Memo:  Frau Fiber speaks out about disposable apparel.

When asking yourself why, do you spend Sunday afternoons once a month to alter, mend or make a new garment?

Consider for a moment, the great deal of disposable apparel goods in the world!  Hurtful to the buyer, more hurtful to the seller, if they only knew it, and most hurtful to the maker! Can we imagine a system, getting long lasting apparel, where the workers were paid a living wage? Can we resolve to purchase nothing but garments made by workers who are paid a living wage?  Instead of having, as we too often have now, very low paid workers producing disposable goods?

The Sewing Rebellion proposes to start honoring the labor of the garments you already have, buy repairing and remaking them, increasing their life, and creating a hybrid garment made of cheep off shore labor, and your labor!

As winter sets in around the country, dig through your closet to find what sweaters need a mend, or trousers, which will last another season with a patch here or there.

National Chapters will be meeting at the following locations:

Lancaster PA Chapter –
TBA, Location to be determined

Chicago Chapter-

Sunday October 18, 12 – 4 PM, Mess Hall,

6932 North Glenwood Ave, Chicago IL

Los Angeles Chapter –

Sunday October 18, 3-7 PM, Hands-on 3rd,

8377 W. Third St., LA CA, 90048, 323.655.0515

Brooklyn – TBA

don't throw your garments away

From the Field: Mothers Union Sewing Group


mothers union sewing group

The Mother’s Union sewing group at St Mary’s Anglican Church, Poshai, Masvingo, Zimbabwe.

I was recently emailed this image, did a bit of research about what they are doing, and I think this is it:  Garment Making – Funding for this project will benefit the health status of the HIV/AIDS affected people and sustain families headed by women and children. The participants will be trained in a skill and be able to receive an income. This project will support one group of 30 participants. The costs will include materials, accessories, two manuals and one electric sewing machine, training, personnel and administration, and transportation.

From the field: Fabric Shops in Walthamstow, London


On the way to William Morris Gallery, came up out of the underground, and discovered this wonderful market street!  Wonderful because it was filled with temporary fabric stalls, and fabric shops.  You could purchase a bowl of fruit / veggies or a yard of fabric for 50p.  Which is about 1$.