Sewcialising – 2016

sewcialising workshops 2












Open Circle Arts is once again running an exciting summer outreach programme. The Sewcialising Project will investigate our relationship with our clothes. It aims to open up discussions about the clothes we choose to wear, where they come from and where they end up. The series of workshops running through the month of July will explore the (re) making of clothing through re-designing, repairing and mending. Boro is the Japanese art of mending textiles, which celebrates the visible repair of clothing. The first workshop will involve you in using the embroidery technique of Sashiko, teaching you how to repair your denim clothing. Our second workshop will explore traditional wool darning techniques investigating the care involved in mending. Week four will see you redesigning a shirt. Just bring along an old cotton shirt in need of some TLC and learn how to repurpose your shirt for the construction of a new item of clothing. Finally you will learn the basic techniques and patterns for dying your garments using the traditional art of Shibori.

By re-claiming material from worn and discarded garments, the very fibres are charged with meaning, they are saturated with the traces of everyday life; through wear and tear.  Can discarded garments reflect our history, becoming actual material memories of times past, love lost or found, disappointments endured or victories won? These garments could then be read as a guide to our past, reconstructed and brought back to life. Central to this discussion is the value we place on these everyday items. Each workshop is designed to explore the ways in which we can extend the life of these garments to keep them in active service.  


Venue: Kilkenny Arts Office, no. 5 Dean Street

Dates: July 7th /14th /21st /28th

Times: 10.30am – 12.30am OR 7pm – 9pm

Cost: €30 for all four workshops

For more information and booking: or call Dee on 087 652 8448

Visit and Like our Facebook pages Open Circle Arts / Kilkenny Arts Office for further information on this and other programs.

 Open Circle Arts is a Kilkenny Arts Office programme. The Arts Office acknowledges the support of the Arts Council, Carlow Kilkenny ETB and Kilkenny County Council’s Waste Prevention Programme.


Ann Dunne was the inspiration behind our Sewcialising project.

Anne dunne 2I was always very interested in clothes but when I look now from this point of view I see that I loved texture, cloth, I loved colours and I loved shape. I suppose I was always interested in the aesthetic aspect of fashion. I love putting things that aren’t obvious together. Often in sales I will buy two pieces and put them together to make a new dress, or I might buy something with a really nice print and put it together to make a different outfit. May I say I do leave the sewing to the professionals! But I know what it will look like and I get a great sense of achievement from putting together inexpensive pieces which are different and create different look or shape form the originals. I love putting things together for other people. I get a great deal of satisfaction out of helping others to feel really well

Clothes, pieces of material can hold a whole world of memories. All these little pieces have a story to tell and the memories associated with them make them very special. My mother was an original recycler. She kept twine, ribbons etc. and buttons, she had a whole pot of buttons! All these buttons have a story for me and they are priceless for that reason.