This Long Thread: Women of Color on Craft, Community, and Connection

This Long Thread: Women of Color on Craft, Community, and Connection

by Jen Hewett
This Long Thread: Women of Color on Craft, Community, and Connection

This Long Thread: Women of Color on Craft, Community, and Connection

by Jen Hewett


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Celebrate the diverse work of people of color in the craft community and explore the personal, political, and creative potential of textile arts and crafts.

In early 2019, the craft community experienced a reckoning when crafters of color began sharing personal stories about exclusion and racial injustice in their field, pointing out the inequity and lack of visible diversity within the crafting world. Author Jen Hewett, who is one of a few prominent women of color in the fiber crafts community, now brings together this book as a direct response to the need to highlight the diverse voices of artists working in fiber arts and crafts.

Weaving together interviews, first-person essays, and artist profiles, This Long Thread explores the work and contributions of people of color across the fiber arts and crafts community, representing a wide spectrum of race, age, region, cultural identity, education, and economic class. These conversations explore techniques and materials, belonging, identity, pride of place, cultural misappropriation, privilege, the value (or undervaluing) of craft, community support structures, recognition or exclusion, intergenerational dialogue, and much more.

Be inspired by the work and stories of innovative people of color who are making exceptional contributions to the world of craft. The diverse range of textile artists and craftspeople featured include knitters, quilters, sewers, weavers, and more who are making inspiring and innovative work, yet who are often overlooked by mainstream media.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781611808247
Publisher: Shambhala
Publication date: 11/16/2021
Pages: 376
Sales rank: 527,115
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

JEN HEWETT is a printmaker, surface designer, and teacher. She lives in a beautiful, light- and art-filled apartment two blocks from Golden Gate Park and two miles from the Pacific Ocean. Since 2014, she has taught block printing to hundreds of students around the world through her popular in-person and online classes. In addition to designing and printing her own collections, Jen also designs custom products for retail clients. She is the author of Print, Pattern, Sew and has over 64k followers on Instagram. Visit her at and @jenhewett.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Demographics 6

The Survey Questions 13

Terminology 15

Why We Craft

Our Craft Origins 18

International Style Icon: Interview with Sonya Philip 23

Un Mantelito Blanco: Essay by Adrienne Rodriguez 37

Survey Profile: Claudia Carpenter 40

Design with Intention: Interview with Seema Krish 44

Learning Our Craft

Beyond Barbie Clothes: Creating for Who We Are 56

Seventh-Generation Weaver: Interview with Naiomi Glasses 60

Handmade Inheritance: Essay by Mia Nakaji Monnier 70

Making, Learning, and Encouraging: Interview with Latifah Saafir 74

Craft as Business

The Business of Craft 88

The Artist Known as Twinkie Chan: Interview with Stephanie Lee 93

Survey Profile: Stephanie Brown 104

Creating What I Want to See: Interview with Rashida Coleman-Hale 109

The Crafty Gemini: Interview with Vanessa Vargas Wilson 120

Survey Profile: Raquel Busa 136

Craft is Political

Quilting Depth: Interview with Chawne Kimber 144

Crafting a More Equitable World: Personal Narrative of Chi L. Nguyen 152

Survey Profile: Virginia Johnson 160

Art Made On and Between Borders: Interview with Tanya Aguiñiga 164

Handmade Past and Present

Braiding the Sweetgrass: Essay by Jenna Ruth Empanayv Wolf 176

Survey Profile: Soukprida Phetmisy 180

My Lola, Ming Guihama: Essay by Ava Guihama 186

Making Happiness: Interview with Youngmin Lee 189

Making Your Place

Traveling Miles: Personal Narrative of Kenya Miles 200

Embracing the Constraints: Interview with Windy Chien 209

Survey Profile: Lisa Woolfork 225

Finding the Answers in Embroidery: Interview with Raven Dock 230

Yards and Yarns of Happiness: Personal Narrative of Dana Williams-Johnson 237

Perception and Representation

Othering and Belonging 246

Race, Gender, and Craft: Plying My Experiences: Essay by Shanel Wu 250

Survey Profile: Aliya Jiwani 256

Misunderstood: The Real Value of Craft 262

Between Two Cultures: Interview with Jessica So Ren Tang 270

Craft as Community

Our Creative Communities 280

The Farmer's Daughter: Interview with Candice English 285

My Body! My Way! My Self in This World. Why I Sew and Some Other Things: Essay by Ebony Haight 294

Survey Profile: Kayla Fernandez 298

Embroidering Community: Interview with Shahnaz Khan 302

Teaching Craft

Survey Profile: Ellie Lum 316

Glorifying My Rest: Interview with Brandi Cheyenne Harper 324

Weaving Hand: Interview with Cynthia Alberto 338

Social Justice Sewing Academy: Interview with Sara Trail 347

Closing Meditation by Loi Laing 357

Conclusion 358

Acknowledgments 360

Contributors 361

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