Mending: Adding Beauty to Function

Live from Los Angeles, United States

Do you have items of clothing, cushion covers, quilts or other such textiles that could do with a little care and attention? On Sunday March 7th at 2PM EST, VAWAA and textile artist Debra will be tuning in to share mending techniques that add beauty. 

Instead of throwing away a torn or damaged piece of clothing or fabric participants will be shown how the damage offers the opportunity to create a new surface design enhancing the beauty of an object while creating a story relaying it's history. We will take time to think about and explore the versatility and strength of various mending techniques, emphasizing the meditative rhythm of hand stitching and the pleasure of having time to make and mend.

Bring along up to two pieces that need mending, and Debra will guide you through the most effective ways to mend, depending on what is needed in the piece. An intuitive textile artist, Debra rarely uses a sewing machine. Her process is similar to that of a painter, loving the act of creating with her hands and working with a variety of different materials. 

This will be a practical and enlightening hands-on session. Enjoy the company of menders all over, as Debra advises the best strategies in problem solving to preserve (and even enhance) the beauty of your items.

All levels are welcome and there is no prior experience required. There will be plenty of time to share, get feedback and meet other participants from around the world. 

Joining us from a different time zone? Be sure to convert the time.

What you'll need

  • Max. 2 items that require mending
  • A needle and thread
  • Scraps of fabric

How to join

We'll be hosting this VAWAA Online on Zoom. We'll send link and details to join via email 1 day and again 30 mins before it begins.

About Debra

Debra is a Los Angeles based textile artist who has been fabric collaging and stitching for over 15 years. Prior to this, she ran a handbag and apparel line. For her, the concept of layers and transparency are symbolic of our being – she loves that she can find these qualities inherent in textile scraps. She believes we collect experiences throughout our lives. These experiences mold and change us; they sway our character. When all is said and done we remain the same person, however changed we may seem. Our integrity, our soul, our being that was birthed into this lifetime remains unchanged. Through stitching layers upon layers, she creates unity and celebrates life. She makes objects of color and beauty while thinking about what life means to her and what she has seen in the world.


"Debra's work is so inspiring. She was engaged and encouraging. She made the session so fun, many of us are hoping for a follow up!" - N. Walter

"Debra's art is wonderful. Love the layers, and the detailed stitching! This technique is fascinating, meditative and fun. I see many possibilities, and am excited to continue exploring!" - Lynn Adamo

"I loved the group experience and would like to expand on the class. Debra is a very clear teacher! Really liked working with her!" - Jen Loew

"I enjoyed the class very much. It was presented well, the teachers show and tell was helpful as well as her quick response to our questions." - Janet Hasselblad

"Debra creates a nice classroom environment virtually." - Laura

"Terrific teacher whose art work I love and admire. She was so friendly and generous in the way she shared information and accessible. I think a little more information prior to the class would have better prepared me better. I wound basting too big a piece and missed the stitching talk." - Robin Strauss

"Enjoyed the class and learning the techniques. Looking forward to more classes with additional stitches." - Denise

"It wasn't long enough, but I felt totally comfortable the whole time." - Heather Myler

Sessions are ticketed to support artists, makers and our small team. If you’re experiencing financial hardship, please do reach out. We may have a generous participant who has paid it forward. We would ask that you pay the love forward by sharing online sessions with friends.