More Sewing Graduates

african bags global bag project sewing graduatesWe had a wonderful day yesterday. I am still ovewhelmed at the joy I saw from the women who were graduating. I did not know this meant so much for them. I believe that they felt that they are no longer spectators in life, but participants in developing their lives. All women who were training including Mary Nduta (our first seamstress and designer) came with their families to witness their graduation.

At around one in the afternoon in our usual meeting place — the Domestic Science room of the African International University, 11 women walked proudly to receive their well–deserved certificate. Completely dressed in a ceremonial gown and cap they made for themselves, each one of them held up their certificate to the applauding crowd. I had told them that God would be visiting us in a very special way that morning — God visiting to affirm his love and care. Through their smiles, laughter and happy chatter with relatives, I could tell God had visited and broken down the strongholds of despair and shame.

Their dream to own the first asset in the form of a sewing machine came true. The members of the Board, Jeremiah, Jared and Priscilla, together with Esther Hall, Pastor Amani (who preached) and George Ogalo surrounded the women in prayer. We also shared lunch together.

Would you like to donate toward a sewing machine to replace the ones given to graduating seamstresses? We will soon have another eight women learning to sew. The cost for an industrial–strength, dual–powered (electrical and foot pedal) machine is $300 (24,000 kenya shillings). We award a sewing machine to each woman who graduates so that they can set up a cottage industry in their own homes, taking work from clients, one of which is the Global Bag Project. You can donate using PayPal on the Web site, or you can write a check to GBP and mail it to Box 30, Wheaton, IL 60187.

God bless you for the prayers and support we receive from you.

Beauty lessons through applique

Applique is a technique of layering a piece of fabric over another to create a colorful design. It is fun and easy and all you need is a sewing machine, fabric scraps, an idea and time. The design is done using zigzag stitches to secure the fabric pieces on the desired larger fabric.

There was some silence except for the rattling of machines and scissors sound on fabrics. I had just introduced applique technique of fabric decoration. All ladies were busy trying to create designs. Evelene B  chose to do shapes for her project which she would use to teach her children about shapes and colors. She had been digging the scrap fabric box to pick colors and found beautiful pieces.

On our Women Cycle of life lesson today we continued a discussion about beauty. Our scripture reading weaved us through Luke 16:15, Proverbs 15 13, 1 Timothy 2:9-10, James 2:1-4 and James 3:17. We learnt the values of men vs values of God, cheerfulness of the heart as beauty, modesty, wisdom that comes from heaven vs earthly wisdom. This was in effort to recognize cultural standards for beauty and contrast it with God’s standards.

Beauty lessons : Global Bag Project : Bags From Africa

But what does applique technique teach us about God and beauty? In applique you  attach a piece fabric on another to create a decorative design. In life you connect (attach) yourself to God in order to discover you purpose (You beautiful decorative design). In applique, no design goes wrong, all pieces are designed and cut by the artist according to his/her purpose.  In life, no human being is a mistake or wrong in the way they look. All people are created (designed) by God according to His purpose.

When we walk with the Lord, we are beautiful inside out!

All the ladies have been working hard to complete their applique project. The most fun part of it was the freedom to create own designs. And here is what we came up with; Pictures below

Beauty lessons : Global Bag Project : Bags From Africa

Mary Nduta's applique project in progress

Beauty lessons : Global Bag Project : Bags From Africa

Evelene Bosibori, 'shapes' applique

Beauty lessons : Global Bag Project : Bags From Africa

Everlene Nekesa with a cross applique, a reminder of Christ's love

Beauty lessons : Global Bag Project : Bags From Africa

Agnes' applique project in progress