MAKERS MONDAY: Tunem Threads by Britt Agrey

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My name is Britt Agrey and I have been making things for my whole life. I seriously got into sewing when my grandma gave me her sewing machine from the 1970s. I am still using this machine today for all of my sewing and I am so grateful that she gave it to me when she no longer needed it. I have recently graduated from the U of S and am returning to school in the fall. I am in love with the outdoors and enjoy spending my free time hiking, camping, cross country skiing, kayaking and traveling to other countries. I also enjoy playing sports such as soccer and dodgeball. I manage to keep myself fairly busy working full time, sewing almost every day and participating in other extra curriculars.

I have always had a keen interest in retro styles and vintage fabrics. I have loved thrifting my entire life and have always strived to reuse and recycle as much as possible. All those aspects come together in Tunem Threads. I am inspired by bold colours and patterns and creating items that are completely unique. All of the clothing and accessories I create are made using recycled and reclaimed textiles and notions, right down to the buttons! Sometimes I may incorporate existing seams into a finished garment, however, I also make items from scratch. I also make clothing that is functional and try to make a variety of sizes that will fit a variety of body shapes. I have most recently started making men's items and am very excited with how they're turning out!

Why do you create?
I create clothing and accessories for men and women from recycled textiles. Currently this includes, dresses, jackets, earrings, bow ties and vests.

How has your art practice evolved since you first started?
I have learned a lot since I first started sewing. I am mainly self taught but also would not be where I am today without the knowledge, skills and encouragement of my mom! I have always enjoyed using recycled fabrics the most and rarely follow store-bought patterns when I sew. My sewing evolution can mainly be seen in my skill level and ability to make functional, comfortable clothing.

How much time do you spend on your art practice? Is it enough?
Recently, I have been sewing daily in preparation for Remix (an annual recycled art show in Saskatoon -April 21st and 22nd, 2018 at the Refinery!!). Sometimes I get "sewer's block" as I like to call it, where I am unsure of what to make and the creativity isn't flowing. Often, mainly during school, I just don't have enough time to sew and put it on the back burner. I am happy that currently, I can sew so frequently! It feels great!

What is the most rewarding part of creating?
For me, I don't start with a pattern or photo. I have an image in my mind of what I would like to create and go from there. It is rewarding when I am able to create exactly what I was imagining and that it worked out well and functional!

Do you have a creative philosophy?
"Don't be afraid to start sewing, there's always a stitch ripper"

What does creative joy mean to you?
Creative joy to me means that I can create items that people feel wonderful in! It also means to me that I can take fabric and an unused garment and turn it into a wearable piece of art!



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