Stitching for SJSA

I’m a volunteer stitcher for the Social Justice Sewing Academy (is that not the best name, or what?). That means occasionally in the mail I receive quilt blocks created during workshops that are in need of stitching. This past fall, I got the chance to help facilitate one of these workshops for the art classes at Baltimore Poly. It was fantastic to assist these high school students as they worked to realize their sketched ideas in cloth. After the workshop, I took seven blocks to work on. I mailed the first three of those this past week.

The flag above is in the shape of Baltimore City. I added very little to this block; I made sure all the edges are sewn down and stitched over the artists’s lines for the words and flag outline.

This artist is making a statement about gun violence and the Baltimore City PD. It involved some very tiny stitching to get most of the words he included in his drawing onto the image (a couple were just too long for the available space).

I’m glad I was able to get so many onto the block though.

This is definitely one I can relate to personally. Again, it’s hard to see the tiny stitching on the bottle (I had to switch phones and I need a primer on this one’s camera; it’s not saving them at the size I’m asking it to). It says “Rx Brain Chemistry 1/day.”

I enjoy stitching, and because these are so portable, I can take them with me and stitch while I’m out at other events, which leads to conversations about what I’m working on, what SJSA is and what they do, and social justice in general. When the blocks get back to SJSA, they are incorporated into quilt tops, which are then quilted by volunteers, and SJSA works to get those quilts into exhibitions, giving these kids’ voices a wider audience. It’s good to be a small part of that.