Friday, May 30, 2008

Environment Appreciation Day

I was invited to give a daylong workshop with all the 5th and 6th graders at Under Mountain Elementary School in Sheffield Massachusetts. They were having Environment Appreciation Day and wanted me to come in and make recycled art with the kids.
What FUN! Three groups of about 20 kids each participated and seemed to enjoy themselves as much as I did!
We made flowers from wool scraps from the studio.
This boy was thrilled about a particular button he found. Quite an erudite, he described the button as deep and pearly as the depths of the deepest oceans. He planned to give it to his grand mother.
Every kid made great flowers to take home.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


We are in the the finishing stages of our new home on the third floor of the rectory next door to the church. My husband and I bought the church and rectory of the former Notre Dame church about two years ago. Since then we have added two additional people to our house hold. Lucy is now nearly 30 months and Violet is pushing 15 months. We have moved, soon to be twice. We have moved my business and all it fixin's into the church. The idea of settling into a home space is super exciting! This week is full of work there and could mean less information arriving here. I am taking pictures and will post them as I have time.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Recycled Textile Garment Construction

My first email blast announcing the recycling/hand sewing workshops scheduled for Saturdays in June went out over the weekend. There was lots of interesting feedback from many of you - for which I am always most grateful! Your input feeds my learning and it is really helpful.

Many of you had similar questions that I have done my best to answer here:

At four sessions - one every Saturday in June, students will be constructing a project from recycled wool sweaters.
At the first workshop, people will learn how to make an adult sized sweater pieced from discarded wool sweaters. Students should bring a sweater or sweatshirt they like the size and shape of - the fit will be duplicated and used for their project. While we will focus on the construction of a particular garment, students will have learned the basics in general garment construction using simple sewing, cutting and piecing techniques by the end of the day. The skills learned each week can be translated easily.
Workshops are limited to 10 students and cost $125.
The only equipment needed to produce the items taught are scissors and a needle and yarn. (Not low-tech but really no-tech.) We will provide all tools and materials, along with a delicious lunch. The only thing required is a garment as mentioned above, an eager willingness to learn, and patience. A decent sense of humor is a helpful tool to bring as well and certainly never goes to waste.

If you would like to get on my email newletter list just email me here.
Oh, and the new name for my business is Sanctuary.

I hope this all makes sense. I worked on getting our new digs at the rectory cleaned and painted today. More on that tomorrow. It is time for me to get some rest!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Workshops on Melville Street

I want to let you know about a series of workshops I will be offering in my Pittsfield studio at 40 Melville Street. Every Saturday beginning the first week of June, I will be teaching a project using recycled wool sweaters, yarn, hand sewing needles, and good sharp scissors. Students will end the day with a finished (or nearly finished) project, written instructions, and a materials list. All tools, and materials, and a healthy lunch will be provided.
Workshops will be held from 10-5pm. No prior experience is necessary although a love of handwork makes the learning process so much fun! The cost is $125 and classes are limited to 10 people.
Please also note that my contact information is changing.
Here are all the new digits:
Crispina ffrench
40 Melville Street
Pittsfield, MA 01201
Cell: 413-441-9766
AND – just so you know, we live right next door at 50 Melville for personal mail or visits.