Makerspace: Steel City Fiber Collective

Meet the Steel City Fiber Collective. From left: . Photo: Nora Swisher.

Meet the Steel City Fiber Collective. From left: Becca, Anna, Nora, and Cheryl. Photo: Nora Swisher.

Last fall, a group of inspired fiber friends in Pittsburgh launched a unique crowd-funding campaign. They had visions of a fiber artist’s playground—a makerspace filled with the tools of our trade.  They wanted to make equipment available and offer classes to grow their local fiber community. With the $10,000 Kickstarter funds, they planned to “provide a community space for working on any and all fiber art projects in a friendly, convenient, and supportive environment. Members can gather to collaborate on projects and share their experience and passion for fiber crafts. With a goal of uniting fiber artists, we provide the tools necessary for a variety of projects including knitting, crocheting, spinning, dyeing, weaving, sewing, quilting, embroidery, and more.” The campaign exceeded its goal within a few weeks, and the Steel City Fiber Collective (SCFC) was off and running.

Photo: Nora Swisher.

Sharing the delights of dyeing in Pittsburgh. Photo: Nora Swisher.

In April, SCFC leased space in Shadyside on Pittsburgh’s East End. They are settling into the space, accumulating fiber arts equipment, and hoping to open the facility later this summer. You can follow their progress on Facebook. But that’s not to say that the four cofounders aren’t out and about, spreading the news about SCFC. They participated in the Raggz Wool Market and Fiber Affair and hosted a new event in April called Drinking and Dyeing. Held at a local taphouse, the event was sponsored in part by a grant from Awesome Pittsburgh. Everyone was able to dye either a skein of yarn or a silk scarf using fiber-reactive dyes—a happy evening, as you can see!

Can’t be there, but want the T-shirt? Get it here!

Photo: Nora Swisher.

The April dyeing event was sponsored by Awesome Pittsburgh. Photo: Nora Swisher.


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