Stitch Buffalo was founded in 2014 with the simple desire to gather and create. Our work has since expanded to encompass three programs—with a vision to becoming a fully equipped textile arts center on Buffalo’s West Side. Our current programs include:
1. Refugee Women’s Workshop
The Refugee Women’s Workshop is a thriving community of over 55 women artists from Bhutan, Burma, Nepal, Thailand, Egypt, Afghanistan, and beyond who sew handcrafted goods for sale in the community. In a domino effect, this small but meaningful creative and financial empowerment infuses each woman, her family, and her community. Through the creation of handcrafted textiles, each artist nurtures her artistic heritage while affirming her self-worth as a woman and a human being.
2. Community Education
Since moving into our own retail/studio space, Stitch Buffalo has expanded our community education in the textile arts. We now offer classes each month taught by our staff, experts in the community, and members of the Refugee Women’s Workshop. From embroidery and dyeing to sewing and weaving, our classes inspire creativity and foster cross-cultural interactions in a diverse and welcoming space.
3. Second Stitch
Through our Second Stitch sustainabililty program, we give a second life to donated supplies no longer needed by other artists, crafters, and businesses. These supplies are integral to creating the products in the Refugee Women’s Workshop, and they are used as the basis for our classes and kits. Any items we can’t use directly in Stitch Buffalo projects are offered to the community at substantial discounts—to keep useful materials out of landfills and in the hands of local artists. All proceeds directly support Stitch Buffalo programming.