Back To Sue’s Art Room At Bishop Gibbons

Wolfgang threading the needed on the sewing machine  Photo By Jon Katz

“Who wants to help me thread this needle?” I called out.  There were 5 sixth graders in the sewing room in  Sue’s art room.   They weren’t sewing, but I was working on some of the sewing machines that needed a little attention.

One boy came over and said he had very good eyesight.  He sat down at the sewing machine and I told him how to thread the needle from front to back.  “There’s a hole in that needle?” he asked.

I pointed to the area of the needle where the hole was and asked his name.  When he told me it was Wolfgang, I told him we had something in common, and introduced myself.   “We were both wolfs,” I said.

It took Wolfgang a few tries, but he was able to thread the needle.  I applauded and thanked him. He smiled and slipped away to join his friends.

I couldn’t help thinking of when I used to thread needles for my grandmother.

I got a few machines fixed up and Sue told me that she asked Hser Nay to do her best to get the machines in shape before I got there. “We made about 90 stuffed animals before Christmas to give away and the machines took a beating,” Sue said.

Now they’re starting to work on some lap quilts and I met one student who made herself a dress and a skirt.  Her grandmother taught her to sew and because there were so many dress patterns donated, she has a lot to choose from.

Jon and I were in Sue’s classroom for art club which is held at the end of the day.  Some kids were working with clay and others were sculpting with plaster and gauze.  A few of the were trying to figure out the best way to cut up the pine cones someone donates so they could make them into flowers.  Hser Nay started a pastel drawing which was going to be a collaboration with a friend.

There weren’t any sewing students today, but by now the kids are teaching each other to sew.

This spring Sue is having a Media class. Jon will give a talk on blogging and Sue asked me if I would talk about how I sell my art online.

Now the table in our dining room is empty.  We had boxes of fabric and even a sewing machine, all donated, piling up since our last visit to Bishop Gibbons.

On our next visit, I’ll bring Sue some of the branches from the birch tree that fell in our side yard a few weeks ago.  She’ll use them next year to teach the kids how to make them into Christmas trees.

2 thoughts on “Back To Sue’s Art Room At Bishop Gibbons

  1. It’s amazing how art can be created out of just about anything … old fabric, buttons, pine cones, tree branches. Your limit is your imagination. Talk about recycling! My mom grew up during the Depression. Nothing went to waste in our household. If she were alive, she would love this!

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