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Workshop: Mending your Mind

3 hrs
Lou and Bobbys, Thirroul

A prescription of stitching and crafting to manage anxiety, depression, and stress.

The process of making things with our hands has been a tradition across global cultures since the beginning of human existence. For many cultures, craft traditions not only harnessed creativity, but also had a purpose in making useful, practical things. A huge resurgence in craft as a creative practice in recent years has really highlighted just how effective it can be as a tool to reduce stress, increase calm, mindfulness and grounding.

If you've never tried it, it can be daunting! But this workshop is designed to gently get you started, to give you some practice, projects, basic techniques and stitches, as well as to connect together, to find out whether this craft practice works for you.

This workshop is co-facilitated with Rumpus, and begins with learning and understanding how anxiety and stress can manifest in our bodies, and the how and why a craft practice like stitching works to relieve hyper-vigilance, racing heart, busy mind.

We are joined by textile artist Michele Elliot who will teach you how to start in the world of stitchcraft, creative mending, and embroidery as a creative practice to support mental health.

What to Expect:

* A safe, friendly, welcoming space

* No expectations from facilitators about your experience with stitching

* Some information about anxiety, stress and depression, how it works in our bodies, and why stitching craft helps to calm our stress response

* Fun and connection

* Anyone interested in exploring this topic is welcome. Whether you have a diagnosed mental health condition, or are looking for some more tools to maintain wellness, and everything in between, you are welcome. Please note this workshop is for ages 18+

This workshop is part of our MakeShift initiative that brings people face to face with creative practice and artists to support mental health and wellbeing. Make new habits, to shift the old ones.

Michele Elliot

Michele is a visual artist, educator and occasional writer. Her artworks include textiles, drawing and sculpture and have been exhibited widely across Australia. She often works with everyday materials such as fabric, clothing and thread, to produce large scale, ephemeral installations, whose themes include memory, place and the passing of time.

Michele has been a lecturer in tertiary education for many years, and a teacher at the National Art School. She is currently an Artist-in-Residence with Tender Funerals.  Michele enjoys works with small groups to create a supportive and responsive learning environment, and a relaxed space for conversation and connections.

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