I decided to write about craftivisim and the WI. It's a realtively modern term but women have been using crafting to protest for generations. Just think of the suffragette banners.
Craftivism is a form of activism, typically incorporating elements of anti-capitalism, environmentalism, solidarity, or third-wave feminism, that is centered on practices of craft - or what can traditionally be referred to as "domestic arts".
I learnt a lot about the ways women in the WI are using their crafting skills to raise awareness of some incredibly important issues. In fact, I've been involved with quite a few but never realised they would be considered craftivisim.
I've crocheted green hearts for Show the Love and inscribed messages on white ribbons to support victims of domestic abuse. Recently, I helped celebrate 100 years of some women getting the vote in the UK, by encouraging my WI to include suffragette colours and figures into our craft show entry. I made the sash for the figure in the picture above (and two other Playmobil figures).
I really enjoy crafting and if I can make something beautiful and make a statement about causes I'm passionate about, then I can't think of anything better.
My article was picked up by the national WI blog and you can read it here...
Claire Wade is the winner of the Good Housekeeping Novel Competition and author of The Choice. She was bed bound for six years with severe ME, trapped in a body that wouldn't do what she wanted. She now writes about women who want to break free from the constraints of their lives, a subject she's deeply familiar with.