Archives for posts with tag: activity
Controlled office chaos

Controlled office chaos

I think this picture of my office says it all – planning for the Patchwork Social, coming up this Bank Holiday weekend at the V&A, has had me organizing, cutting, prepping, and sewing for the last several weeks.  I’m in my element, though – a huge event requiring lots of logistical thought PLUS the creativity of sewing PLUS doing good for others?  Wow.  I couldn’t ask for more.

The weekend is going to be full of great activities – including sewing patchwork blocks by hand or machine, making a ‘virtual quilt’ from designs inspired by the museum’s collections, and learning how to re-purpose your old clothes and textiles into new treasures with Sarah Baulch of ReVampt.  There are also family activities and the chance to cheer on members of Girlguiding London and South East Region (LaSER) as they sew towards their craft badges.

The ‘doing good’ part is because all of the hand- and machine-sewn patchwork is going to be made into quilts for Project Linus UK, a charity supporting seriously ill and traumatised children.  Project Linus will be donating the finished quilts to Great Ormond Street Hospital and Kids Company.

I was running up some example quilts yesterday with the beautiful fabric we’ve got – all 200 metres of it donated by Coats Crafts, plus needles and thread too – and feeling so happy that what I was making was going to go towards making a difference in the life of a child in distress.  It was such a good feeling – now I realize why all the Project Linus volunteers I’ve met are so dedicated to their work.  Over 20 people from Project Linus will be volunteering this weekend, and some of them have already been a great help in cutting and prepping some of the fabric.  (If I’d had to do all 200 metres myself I’d have gone nuts!)

I’m really looking forward to the event and hope that everyone who comes will enjoy it.  In fact, I’m wishing it were tomorrow already.  I may not be able to sleep tonight!

'Here's one I made earlier!'

'Here's one I made earlier!'


Yesterday I posted about the Flickr Design Challenge at Designerama!, which is happening this weekend at the V&A.  Alongside that activity, the digital team is also putting on an SMS wall projection with the help of multi-disciplinary artists Troika.

For the SMS projection, we’ll be asking participants to text a response from their mobile phone to finish the following sentence:  ‘If I were a designer, I would design…’  Their responses will be projected onto a wall in the Sackler Centre in an ever-changing formation.

For me there are so many answers I could probably fill up the whole wall:

  • an eco-house in the middle of nowhere
  • a library with built-in bookshelves to hold all our books
  • letterpress greeting cards
  • pretty tablecloths and napkins
  • a transport system that doesn’t break down
  • woodblock prints inspired by Japanese design
  • a handbag with the perfect number of pockets
  • a drop-dead gorgeous evening dress
  • a bed that’s truly comfortable
  • a sustainable and organic garden
  • a cookbook with delicious recipes and photos to salivate over
  • delicate ceramic bowls and cups
  • patterns for fabrics
  • book covers for children’s books

There are so many things I could add to this list!  I’m really looking forward to seeing how visitors respond to this question.  I also hope that they realize that when they text their answer, they do understand that being a designer isn’t a totally unattainable thing.  They’re already designing many parts of their own lives, sometimes without even realizing it.  To imply that they’d have to be a Designer with a capital D in order to create useful and beautiful things will be counter to the whole spirit of the activity.  The outcome we hope for is that texting an answer will inspire someone to actually start to create the thing that they say they would design.