The first day of the Christmas fashion makerspace and pop-up shop attracted a good mix of locals and migrants gathered around the sewing machines. I introduced a triangular bag template from Between-the-Lines to give the early participants a means to experiment with simple geometric shapes. Very soon it was obvious that everyone was making personal interpretations of the concept to fit their whims and needs. Our first bag emerged just two hours after opening the doors to the makerspace.
Just after lunch we were joined by a new group of participants including migrants with tailoring experience. This was soon evidenced as the machines whirred, the scissors flashed, and fresh shapes appeared and were quickly assembled on the cutting tables. As the afternoon drew to a close, some participants embarked upon making their second bag. By the end of the day our pop-up shop was stocked with over a dozen bags, demonstrating an eclectic range of designs. These, hopefully, will be acquired by shoppers later in the week who can donate monies to the Associazione Voluntarius Onlus who work with migrants and refugees in Bolzano.
As the results show, making a bag in the contagious atmosphere of the makerspace in BITZ, where everyone seemed to share a tip with everyone else, generates much more than a simple artifact.
Tomorrow in the makerspace the focus is gloves/mittens and scarves…
Mode Uncut would like to thank all the participants, our partners – BITZ unibz fablab, Unibz – and local sponsors – Mr Christian Mohr of J. Mohr who lent three sewing machines, Mr Wolfgang Sauer who donated miscellaneous haberdashery, and Unibz students who donated textiles and clothing.
All photos, Alastair Fuad-Luke.