Craftivism is the radical practice of quiet but persistent rebellion. Or as craftivist Sarah Corbett calls it, “gentle protest”.
Knitting is one form of craftivism for which I strongly advocate. The process of knitting facilitates a slowing down, making time to reach insight and plan for action, of choosing to make clothes instead of buy fast fashion, make household items that last instead of disposable ones. The act of wearing something hand-knitted, a garment that does not conform to someone else’s sizing labels, or aesthetic is also an act of rebellion against consumerism, materialism, a deliberate move against a fast-paced, throw-away culture.
I recently taught a series of workshops, Knitting for Zero Waste Living at one of City of Charles Sturt’s community centres, 19 on Green in Brompton. The last workshop was yesterday in fact. Each of the four workshops was designed to share skills and create a useful item for the home to facilitate a more sustainable lifestyle. But it was more than that. It was about empowering people to take back their creative power to make something themselves, and in doing so, opening up different choices.
Learning to knit as a five year old has provided me with different choices about how I spend my time, how I dress, how I express myself creatively, how I engage with others, how I act as a human in a consumerist society, how I see and make sense of my world.
I am grateful to Charles Sturt Council, particularly the staff at 19 on Green for inviting me to share knitting skills and sustainable practices, as well as providing a space for empowering community through craftivism,