Creating Textiles Differently: A Conversation on Sustainable Fiber Systems

Folk Art School

Vesterheim Folk Art School

Creating Textiles Differently: A Conversation on Sustainable Fiber Systems

Thursday, April 15, 2021 (7:30 -8:30 PM CT) with Maddy Bartsch

Level of Instruction
Everyone welcome.
$0.00 Members
$0.00 Non-members

When you look at the textiles in your home, do you know who made them or where they came from? Do you know how they were made? Do you know how the many hands that skillfully created them were treated? If you can't answer any of those questions, take heart. Navigating our current textile systems has morphed into a near-impossible task, but it doesn't have to be.

As we stand before the tipping point of the climate crisis, what does it mean to rethink our systems in order to root out oppression, rebalance our world, and works as a collaborator with the land rather than against it. There is a lot of discourse today on how to "think green", "make a smaller footprint", "be sustainable", and act "eco-friendly". But what does that mean for our daily lives as individuals and how we interact with textiles in a better way?

In this conversation, Maddy Bartsch, Fiber Artist and Executive Director of the Three Rivers Fiber Shed will demystify what is going on in our contemporary textile systems and what alternative and other opportunities exist to be involved from the start to the finish. Maddy will talk about creating circular textile systems that work with the seasons and land in order to hold more connection and life with every textile we make. From planting community dye gardens to working with local farmers to mending our own clothes rather than buying new - join us to discuss how the future of textiles is in our hands!

The listed program is one Zoom session on Thursday, April 15, 2021 (7:30-8:30 PM CT)

Register here. You will receive an email with a Zoom link for the program. 

If you are interested in learning some more hands-on techniques for sustainable fiber systems, consider taking Maddy's class, Let's Mend It!, on May 20.  

Don't hesitate to contact Josh Torkelson, Folk Art Coordinator, with any questions you may have (

Find Maddy’s website here.

Supplies: A computer, laptop, or tablet with a camera and mic as well as a fast, reliable internet connection.

Enrollment Deadline: April 15, 2021

About the Instructor

Maddy Bartsch

Maddy Bartsch

Maddy Bartsch is an artist, educator, and organizer of decentralized textile economies based in Minneapolis. She is a co-founder and Executive Director of the Three Rivers Fibershed, an affiliate branch of Fibershed, and just finished a three-year term as President of the Weavers Guild of Minnesota. She was project manager for the Minnesota Hemp Wool Project, the Three Rivers Fibershed Regional Fiber Sourcebook, and the Food Fighters Project and has previous experience as a Farm Educator at Gale Woods Farm. Maddy speaks on the topic of local fiber systems and sustainable textiles and teaches fiber arts classes to learners of all ages throughout the Midwest.