The Sewing Circle Project

More than twenty years ago Linda Lundstrom was given a vision…
It was of a clear dark night and like a bird, she was flying over Northern Canada, toward the west. She saw tiny lights, singularly shining from areas which could only be home to First Nations.
She wondered what was happening down there…and simultaneously felt a certainty that whatever the activity, it had a connection to her. What could it be?
Since that time, Lundstrom has been searching for ways to make this vision a reality.

The result… The Sewing Circle Project.

-To create Economic Development.
-To express the culture and traditions of the community.
-To leverage Linda Lundstrom’s knowledge and network of suppliers and her lifelong commitment to advocate for First Nations communities by assisting to build a sustainable source of cultural identity and revenue.

METHOD – By acting as a purchasing agent for the community, Lundstrom to supply the materials needed to make garments as well as other necessary items. This would include both supplies of fabrics, thread, beads, jingles, scissors, needles, pins, etc., as well as cutting, sewing and pressing machines. Selection of these items to be determined based on the requirements of the people.
– Linda Lundstrom to provide workshops to teach and share knowledge of pattern-making, garment construction, manufacturing and design techniques. These workshops could be held in the community, or participants could come to the Linda Lundstrom studio, in Caledon, Ont.

PARTICIPANTS – Youth and adults, men or women, will increase their skills by making their own patterns for regular garments or regalia.
– Those interested in fashion design and sewing will learn methods of construction and production in order to develop a sustainable and viable business in the community.
– Traditional craftspeople (beaders, deer/moose hide makers) will have a place to buy supplies at excellent prices and have a space to work together with others.

RESULTS –First Nations communities will have a meeting place where youth and adults have quality supplies and equipment to create clothing and fabric products. Some will be trained to help others to operate the machines. Items can initially be made for personal use but eventually may be sold through a dynamic web-based sales/marketing plan. Participants will create a collaborative atmosphere in the workshop where their cultural identity will be vibrant.

THE FIRST STEP…secure $8,000 to $10,000 of funding, then commission Linda Lundstrom to purchase and install a complete ‘Sewing Circle’ facility. Designate a space of 300 to 400 sq. ft. Choose a person to manage the facility, coordinate training sessions and plan for Lundstrom to visit the workshop.

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