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Purposeful Repurposing: Up-Cycled Materials for use in Fiber Art Projects – An Online Visual Art Workshop with Leslie Renn

July 10 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm EDT

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Purposeful Repurposing: Up-Cycled Materials for use in Fiber Art Projects - An Online Visual Art Workshop with Leslie Renn

What can you do with leftover fabric scraps, old t-shirts, uniforms, and junk materials? In this workshop, participants will be introduced to several methods for transforming old fiber materials into yarn, cord, and twine for use in future creative projects. This workshop is accessible for all skill levels so that participants might find a way to repurpose sentimental materials that are taking up space or junk that might otherwise be destined for the landfill. It is hoped that this workshop might inspire participants to consider using some of the new techniques to create materials for contribution to a collaborative weaving project that will take place during the 2024 CBAW & Strathmore Day of Belonging.


  • Fabric Scissors
  • Non-Fabric Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Optional, Binder Clips, Clothespin, Quilting Clips, etc. to hold cord

Optional Tools for Creating Machine Sewn Cord*:

  • Sewing Machine with standard presser foot and threaded with matching top and bobbin threads


  • A variety of Scrap fabric in assorted lengths/sizes like a light weight woven cotton, or poly-cotton blend fabric will work best for Twine/Rope made by hand
  • Other fabrics are better suited for machine-sewn cord
  • Old T-shirts (Cotton Jersey or similar with a bit of stretch is best)
  • Old uniforms or clothes
  • Scrap Yarn
  • Thin Papers (i.e. tissue paper, crepe paper, newsprint or newspaper, receipt paper, tracing paper, etc.)
  • Plastic Grocery Bags
  • Cardboard, paper rolls, or empty spools to wind your cord/rope/twine onto

*This workshop will explore a variety of techniques for participants of all skill levels and does not require any prior knowledge or sewing machine experience. For those with access to a sewing machine, as well as a basic understanding of how to operate the machine and sew with a zig-zag stitch, a machine sewn technique for creating cord and ribbon with up-cycled materials will also be introduced.

2024.07.10 Purposeful Repurposing with Leslie Renn

Leslie Renn is an interdisciplinary artist, educator, and life-long Virginian, having spent most of her life between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Tidewater area of southeast Virginia. She received her BFA in fibers and printmaking from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia in 2013 and her MFA in Studio Art at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore in 2021. She is a Veteran of the Iraq War and an instructor with the Veteran-artist led organization Frontline Paper (formerly Combat Paper NJ) where she helps other Veterans and service members turn their military uniforms into paper. She lives in Norfolk, Virginia with her husband and their two children. Find Leslie on Instagram.

About CBAW Visual Arts Workshops Join Veterans and Artists, Valerie Acosta, Shaun Smith, Joe Merritt, or a special guest to learn new art techniques on Wednesdays at 7pm EST. Come hang out in a collaborative group setting and bring what materials you have. No experience necessary! To register, click the link below.


MissionBelonging is funded in part by Creative ForcesĀ®: NEA Military Healing Arts Network, an initiative of the National Endowment in partnership with the U.S. Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Creative Forces Community Engagement Grant program is managed by Mid-America Arts Alliance.

National Endowment of the Arts-Creative ForcesMid-America Arts Alliance


July 10
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm EDT
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Leslie Renn
Visual Arts Workshop
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