Sewing together stories about motherhood – Mama Stitch at Glasgow Women’s Library

When we bring our cultures together, we share the richness of our traditions.

On Friday, June 23, as part of Refugee Festival Scotland, we held an event at Glasgow Women’s Library celebrating our project Mama Stitch. This project was a collaboration between Amma and Dr Lucy Lowe, Senior Lecturer in Medical Anthropology  at Edinburgh University.

We gathered in the main hall of the library, with the beautiful finished quilt on display for all to enjoy.  The makers of the quilt sat side by side with members of the public, all of us continuing the creative process of experimenting, crafting, sharing. We taught each other stitches, we helped each other sew.  Inevitably when we sit in groups engaging in handiwork, we begin to talk — sharing stories of our families, our children and mothers, our births, our villages, our backgrounds, our cultural practices.

Working together in this way, we weave our stories into the artwork that we produce. 

بوی بهشت می دهد دست دعای مادرم
سجده پس از خدا برم بر کف پای مادرم
آتش پاک عشق را دامن شوق می زند
در دل خام سوز من حمد و نثای مادرم

“My mother’s prayer hands smell like heaven
I will prostrate before God on the soles of my mother’s feet
The pure fire of love fuels enthusiasm
In my raw burning heart I praise my mother”

Zuhal, a member of Amma Family, created a square with this beautiful poem in Dari Persian, traditional to her home in Afghanistan. 

Soon we will be assembling the ‘solidarity squares’ created by the attendees of our event, putting them together into a companion quilt that will be displayed alongside the original Mama Stitch creation in the Amma Office at Cadogan Square. Stay tuned to see the quilt come together.