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West Coast Crafty

April 07: Craftivism in Action

Written on April 18, 2007 3:42 PM

The crafty community never fails to amaze me with its generosity, so this month I wanted to highlight three very worthy projects to support with your time and energy, if you are so inclined. And of course be sure to keep an eye on Betsy Greer's craftivism site for more resources and ideas for craft in action.

Update: Two crafty ways to support those affected by the horrible events at Virginia Tech:

Natalie posted about a great craft project on Craftzine: Mosiac Yarn Shop in Blacksburg is collecting hand-knitted or crocheted 8 by 8-inch squares in VT colors (maroon, orange, black or white), which will be made into blankets for the victims' families. Mosiac asks that you use soft, high-quality yarn for your squares and will be collecting them through the month of May. All the details are here.

Anna also mentioned that one of the sellers in the etsy_lj group on Livejournal is donating all of the proceeds from her shop to the Hokie Spirit Memorial Fund. She suggested listing items and tagging them with “hokiefund.”

Her shop is here.

Not as directly crafty is this information from the head of the Virginia Tech Foundation that was passed on to me, in case anyone is interested in donating directly to memorials:

“Many have asked how they may send financial memorials… any memorial gifts, payable to the “Virginia Tech Foundation,” designated specifically for the “Virginia Tech Family Fund,” should be mailed to University Development, 902 Prices Fork Road (0336), Blacksburg, VA 24061.”

If you’d like to, maybe you can make something by hand, and sell it as a fundraiser for the memorial fund in honor of the students and professors who were killed. If I hear of a way to directly donate crafty gifts or cards, I’ll post it, so please let me know if you have heard about anything like that. I would really appreciate it.

Second, have you heard about Wonderland Retreat?

wonderland retreat banner

Alison Gordon, crafter of WonderlandQ, co-organizer of Bazaar Bizarre and Sampler Contributor Relations superhero, very recently faced a medical emergency. Like so many other independent artists and crafters, Alison is without health insurance.

The Wonderland Retreat etsy shop (named in honor of Alison's website) was created by her friends to help ease the financial burden of her ordeal, and etsy is waiving all fees. If you would like to help a fellow crafter, please consider purchasing an item from the shop or donating an item of your own. To donate an item, please contact Renee Garner at wonderlandretreat at gmail.com for more information. To make a monetary donation of any size, please send paypal to info at auroraseven.com.

If you'd like to donate something handmade, please send the following info to Renee at wonderlandretreat at gmail.com:

--1 biographical sentence
--website for more detailed info on the artist/goods (if you have one)
--address/contact email
--a photograph of the product
--a short description of the product
--suggested price
--mailing info: will you mail straight from their location or will you mail to her to ship upon item's sale� If you mail will you cover shipping or should that be added to the transaction?

And don't forget to shop if you're looking for just the thing for a gift or for yourself! There's so much great stuff -- I snapped up a lovely birthday present for a friend, donated by Jenny of Sew Darn Cute... love it.

Third up is the wonderful Handmade Nation (formerly known as the Indie Craft Documentary) project.

Handmade Nation

Faythe Levine recently posted an eight-minute sneak peek at her Handmade Nation film here on YouTube, featuring interviews with tons of crafters, including India Romeo, Jill Bliss, Knitta Please (in action!!), Jennifer Perkins, and many more. The full-length version will premiere in March 2008 -- I can't wait to see it! Congratulations, Faythe -- it looks incredible!

If you'd like to support the film project, you can shop or donate to the Handmade Nation etsy shop as well. You can also send cash donations via paypal at indiecraftdocumentary at gmail.com or you can make a check out to Faythe Levine and send it to indie craft documentary, P.O. Box 134, Milwaukee, WI 53201-0134.

If you have other craftivism suggestions I would love to hear about them and update the column with your ideas, so please comment!

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Susan Beal is a West Coast writer and crafter who does her best to get the word out about cool stuff.