By Joshua Robinson –
Textile festival, WOVEN in Kirklees, in partnership with Dewsbury Taking the Lead, is bringing STRUT to Dewsbury this February, to engage the local community in craft skills for the future, as well as to understand what residents, artists, makers, and visitors want from the festival in coming years.
STRUT: Celebrating Creativity in Dewsbury will take place from Friday 16th – Sunday 18th February 2024 at Dewsbury Town Hall with workshops, music, exhibitions, and an area for artists and makers to show and sell.
WOVEN, the biennial festival was initiated in 2019 and is funded by Kirklees Council, but is owned by everyone, including community groups, textile businesses, cultural and educational organisations, artists, and heritage sites across the district.
WOVEN’s 2023 festival took place from May – July last year, engaging with over 15,000 people with a diverse programme that focused on ensuring the continued growth of essential textile skills. The first STRUT: Fashion + Music + Identity took place in June 2023 with a community catwalk popping up in the centre of Dewsbury, surrounded by a host of activities including crafts, a music stage from Kirklees Year of Music 2023, a skatepark, and more.
This year’s STRUT will be an active space for making full of free workshops for skill-building, live music hosted by Kirklees Year of Music, a makers market, and more.
This is what is happening over the three days of STRUT:
Friday 16th February, 12.30 – 5 pm, Dewsbury Town Hall:
Visit the free, family-friendly exhibition celebrating the people of Kirklees who strutted their creations at last year’s STRUT, and see images from SATURDAY TOWN, by award-winning photographer, Casey Orr.
Pop-up drop-in outdoor free, family-friendly, fun, and creative art workshops throughout the day led by Children’s Art School.
Before the event, talk to the WOVEN team about the future of WOVEN in Dewsbury at the WOVEN Future Planning Session from 10 am – 12 pm. Book free ticket by clicking here.
Saturday 17th February, 11 am – 4 pm, Dewsbury Town Hall:
See the family-friendly exhibition as well as join in with the WOVEN community event! Full of fun workshops for skill-making, music, and activities for all the family – this event is a place to learn more about the groups doing great things in Dewsbury.
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Free activities taking place all day include:
- Make a ‘jam jar greenhouse’ to grow natural dye plants with artist Karen Stansfield
- Create a concertina sketchbook with artist Harriet Lawson
- Sound Walks with Duncan Chapman from Manasamitra [Sounds of Dewsbury tours: 11 am – the Looking Up walk; 12.30 pm – The Artworks walk; 2.00 pm – the Heritage walk]
- Have your portrait taken at Casey Orr’s Pop Up Photo Studio
- Free face painting with Artifaces
- Pop-up drop-in outdoor free, family-friendly, fun, and creative art workshops throughout the day led by Children’s Art School
Community & Makers Market
Browse handmade crafts and meet groups supporting creativity in Dewsbury including Craft and Laughter Community group; ESapphireShop; Mindful Maker CIC; Naturally Woodland; Nesh; Paige Eden; Real Hand Sewnful; Quirky Doodle Ceramic’s; Taylor made by Anne; Zillion Arts and Crafts; Callaloo Carnival Arts; Alpoopers; CLEAR, Dewsbury Arcade; Thread Republic; Dewsbury Community Outreach; Dewsbury & District Third Age; Kirklees Cohesion Team.
Kirklees Year of Music will be providing free live music from Lizzey Ross & Lloyd Degler, Mitchy Music; Dewsbury Community Choir; Simon Walker; and Crystal Visions throughout the day and DJ Beth Holloway will take to the decks from 3 – 4 pm.
Sunday 18th February, 11 am – 4 pm, Dewsbury Town Hall:
Drop in on Sunday to meet the WOVEN team and provide feedback about the festival. Plus there is the opportuntiy to get creative and make a personal zine with the team from Thread Republic!
Since late 2023, the WOVEN team has been out and about in the community talking with those familiar and not so familiar with the festival to find out what people want from the programmes WOVEN offers in the future. STRUT will give the people of Dewsbury a chance to meet the team in person and discuss their thoughts on WOVEN’s future in the district.
Visit STRUT: Celebrating Creativity in Dewsbury from Friday 16th – Sunday 18th February 2024 at Dewsbury Town Hall. Unable to make it but still want to have your say on the future of WOVEN? Fill in an online survey by clicking here.
Find out more about WOVEN and access textile resources: https://woveninkirklees.co.uk/