I’ve been sewing since I was 8 years old, I’m 53 now. I have worked to earn my own money since I was 12. I’ve sewn professionally since 1987, My grandmother sewed for 70 years, My mother’s sews, my sister’s sew, my brother, sewed, my daughter sews, my son is an artist, my nephew and nieces sew.
I have been fiercely loyal to numerous sewing brands, check your databases, newsletters, lists & rewards programs, I have supported YOU.
In the last two weeks, I’ve watched and listened really carefully to see who amongst us are, in fact, allies to our Black makers in our community. I’ve heard my friends of color tell their experiences of racism in stores. They’ve shared a lack of representation in brand marketing. I see the amount of time and money spent to make incredible creative art. They tag and promote all these same brands(for free). Hearing their point of view is giving me great pause.
Who amongst us are allies? I’m asking myself, “if I were them, what would I need to see change to be willing to support these brands again?” It’s one thing to say, “I support you.” The trust has already been broken; disappointment has already set in. Loyalty and trust are earned. They require action—tangible evidence of change, the change that is the brand’s standard now, and ongoing. Without communication of precisely what you are doing to support Black makers, I’m struggling to lend mine to your brands.
If I’m feeling this way, I’m wondering how many of you Black makers and allies of black makers are feeling the same way too?