Iona Barker: Fun Free Hand Sewing Classes For Mental Wellbeing

Iona Barker is our guest today on the Stitchery Stories textile art podcast. Iona shares her story of creativity and then burnout as she pursued her fashion and costume career.

Continue reading to discover the highlights of our chat and to see examples of  Say It AIn’t Sew classes in action …

Fighting depression she turned to creativity to help her healing, and Say It Ain’t Sew was born. It is a non-profit organisation which encourages creativity through running free hand sewing classes across several locations in Scotland. Listen as Iona shares her fascinating story and vision of using craft as a tool to reduce social isolation, improve cognitive skills and increase mental wellbeing.

Susan Weeks chats with Iona about:

  • The recent debut of Say It Ain’t Sew in England (York)
  • Cutting things up when a child and being taught to sew them back together
  • Being repeatedly told ‘You can’t do that you are a girl’
  • Becoming burnt out in London’s fashion industry and fighting depression afterwards
  • Always turning to hand sewing when feeling low or unhappy
  • Surprise at learning that sewing and creativity are being forced out of schools
  • The importance of hand sewing in civilisation over millenia
  • The delights of home sewing and knitting
  • Realising that running sewing classes would help others to feel better who were also struggling
  • Providing motivation to get out of the house, meet people, and be creative again
  • Attracting other young professionals with a similar story
  • The lovely aspects of sewing in a group
  • Is the pub the perfect place to sit, chat or sew?
  • Dragging along husbands and boyfriends & getting them sewing
  • The delight of helping people discover they are creative and the enjoyment of sewing
  • Creativity, problem solving and their role in helping to combat dementia
  • Hoarding fabric… are we all guilty of this?
  • Spreading the word on creativity and sewing
Iona Barker Say It Aint Sew Stitchery Stories Textile Art Podcast Guest
Iona Barker Say It Aint Sew Stitchery Stories Textile Art Podcast Guest

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