January 2015 update
Towards the end of 2014 it became clear that demand for TTK’s sociable sewing sessions had fallen, and so we cancelled further workshops. We have concluded that, with several other local sewing groups starting up in the time since we began (see below) and many excellent “How to…” videos on YouTube, there may no longer be a need for our services. If anyone reading this would like to try something similar, perhaps at a different time or place or with a different emphasis (ours was always on sharing skills and making do and mending), do please contact Marilyn to see if we can help in any way or hand on some of our kit.
There are fortnightly “Stitch and Chat” sessions at Kingston Environment Centre – anyone who would like to join can email Pat – and weekly Make Do and Mend sewing and craft sessions at Ham Library on Tuesday mornings, 10.00-12.00.
Stitch In Time, Transition Town Kingston’s sociable sewing sessions, began with a bag-making workshop in 2009 and then ran monthly for 4 years from January 2010 to December 2014, first at Kingston Environment Centre in its previous premises, then at Kingston College for a few months in 2013, and finally at Kingston Welcare on Canbury Park Road, for just over a year. We also occasionally took our workshops out on request – to Refugee Action Kingston’s English class, community events, John Lewis…
Our workshops were an opportunity to share skills and repair or upcycle clothes in need of a little TLC. Anyone (young or old, expert or novice, male or female) who wanted free advice or help with a sewing problem, or could offer advice, or wanted to improve their sewing skills and learn new ways of doing things, was welcome. Assistance and conversation was provided, and refreshments were available. Spring and summer sessions usually included tips on “spring cleaning your wardrobe” – refreshing and repairing and altering old clothes to make them wearable again. Winter sessions tended to focus on keeping warm. In our 4+ years we made bags, curtains, draught excluders, toys… learnt to knit, crochet, make a skirt, and get the best out of our donated sewing machines, and helped to patch, repair or alter clothes ranging from jeans and trousers to jackets and dresses.
Pre-2015 news, events and announcements
At every Stitch In Time session you are welcome to bring along a sewing problem or project, ask for advice or help with it, and work on it for the whole session if you like. Bring scissors and other useful bits and pieces (e g matching thread) if you can. Thanks to Freegle, Des Kay and other donors, Stitch in Time owns several sewing machines which we are learning our way around, and you are welcome to use these. We have cleaned, repaired and serviced some of our sewing machines, thanks to a small grant from Kingston Council in 2012.
We won’t do your repairs or alterations for you, just show you how, including useful short-cuts we have picked up, and encourage you to have a go yourself! We enjoy sharing our know-how, and we hate waste – so we hope to encourage everyone who comes along to re-use, repair, renovate and upcycle clothes and other textiles, keeping them out of the waste system and saving money at the same time. Additionally at some sessions, there will be someone sharing a skill or leading on a particular project, with lots of information on tools and materials as we go, and the opportunity to help plan future workshops: what skills would you like to learn or share? More creative possibilities include knitting, crochet, patching, making a rag-rug…
We are very grateful to to Kingston Environment Centre for providing us with a good home for a couple of years. We couldn’t have started without them, but in January 2013 when the the Environment Centre closed for redevelopment, we moved out – and from October 2013 our monthly workshops will be on first Tuesday mornings at Kingston Welcare, Canbury Park Road (see Upcoming Events for details).