Peacefibres

SCARVES OF PEACE…. Braiding Relationships

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The theme of Peace Fibres is creating peace by connecting to self, to others, and to the larger world with fibres the medium. Scarves of Peace offer a simple, symbolic, hands-on opportunity to directly participate in this process.

YOU can participate…. directly, simply, absolutely. Read on for a full explanation….

Scarves of Peace
Why scarves?
Perhaps nothing demonstrates respectful relationship better than a scarf that is created by the hands of one, then draped and worn for warmth and adornment by another. With each contributed strand blessed by its source with wishes for peace , then braided by teams sending the intention of peace, the scarves become more than symbolic of the human yearning for peaceful relationship to self, others, and to the larger world; they become a tangible connection.
Who receives the scarves?
To begin with, scarves will be sent to President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, with the request that they not only wear a scarf themselves, but that they present a scarf to the other world leaders with whom they share the responsibility for creating peaceful relationships.
Other scarves will be sent to leaders in other positions of power….. corporate heads, elected officials, teachers, film stars….. with the message to remember the human longing for respectful relationship at all levels.
Scarves will also be sent to places where turmoil and conflict, natural disaster, or poverty create an acute need to feel the warmth, love, and beauty sent to comfort them and to stand in solidarity with them.
How is Peace Fibres: Stitching a Soulful World involved in this project?
The goal of the book is to create awareness, inspire awe, and stimulate action in service of more peaceful relationships on a personal and political level; the universality of fibre work makes it an all-encompassing vehicle to do this. ALL proceeds from the sale of Peace Fibres through this project in Grand Marais will go directly to the Violence Prevention Center of Cook County. Other organizations creating a braiding session in their communities may donate proceeds to any cause promoting a cessation of violence.
Peace Fibres will be sold at a reduced price to participants.
How can I participate?
There are four easy avenues to participation, as follow:
1. SEND FIBRES BLESSED WITH YOUR WISHES FOR PEACE!
• Fibres must be 5 YARDS IN LENGTH….they may be yarns, ribbons (cloth), ½” stips of fabric cut to length, finger-crocheted chains,* fringy strings, almost anything appropriate for braiding.

THEY MUST BE AT LEAST 5 YARDS LONG.

• Slip into an envelope and mail to:
Karen Lohn
P.O. Box 1181
Grand Marais, MN 55605

• Your fibres will be braided by teams on
International Day of Peace, September 21, into
Scarves of Peace!

2. JOIN OUR BRAIDING TEAMS!
• We’ll meet by the shore of Lake Superior to celebrate a day of peace with braiding, music, talks, food, a little dance!
• ANYONE can do this…NO TALENT, EXPERIENCE, OR EXPERTISE IN ANYTHING IS REQUIRED!
• Contact Karen Lohn: karenlohn@boreal.org (218-349-8072) OR

3. ORGANIZE A BRAIDING SESSION IN YOUR COMMUNITY!!
• Gather a group, large or small
• Collect as many 5 yard lengths of fibres as you can
• In teams, braid the fibres into “Rapunzel” scarves, blessed with intentions of peace, turning them into Scarves of Peace. * * (instructions follow)
• Sell copies of Peace Fibres at a reduced price to contribute to your local peace organizations.
• Send completed scarves to leaders or peoples of your choice, or send to Karen Lohn at P.O. Box 1181, Grand Marais, MN 55604, for distribution.

4. BUY PEACE FIBRES: STITCHING A SOULFUL WORLD !!
• ALL proceeds from the sale of Peace Fibres for this project will be donated to agents of peace.
• In Grand Marais, the recipient of the proceeds will be The Violence Prevention Center of Cook County, an organization committed to the cessation of violence on all levels.
• Purchase at the events, online at www.peacefibres.com or at local booksellers.

** INSTRUCTIONS FOR BRAIDING FIBRES INTO SCARVES OF PEACE:
1. Collect at least 39 strips of fibre, each strip at least 5 yards in length.
2. Include colorful, fringy, additional yarns as desired.
3. Divide the strips into three separate groups, at least 13 lengths of fibre in each group (try to distribute weights, textures, and colors among the three groups relatively evenly).
4. Pause together to bless the fibres with an intention of peace, personally and politically. Hum or chant together as desired.
5. With an individual holding each of the three groups of fibres, bring the ends together, tying a secure knot of all the joined fibres, leaving about 3-5 inches for fringe when complete.
6. One individual holds onto the secured end of the joined fibres and will be the director of the braiding process.
7. The three holders of the long strands begin braiding as the director instructs.
• Be sure to tighten the strands each time a group crosses another.
• Constantly straighten the long ends of the groupings to avoid tangling.
8. Braid until the shortest strand has only about 5 inches remaining.
• Knot the strands at this point, leaving 3-5 inches of fibres as at the beginning.
• Trim the strands to the length of the shortest, either straight across or in varying lengths for an irregular look.
• Trim the ends at the beginning of the scarf to match the finish.
9. VOILA! You have created a SCARF OF PEACE! THANK YOU!

* An alternative to single strands is to join chains of finger-knitting (or finger-crocheting, a favorite fibre technique of children.
To start finger crochet, wrap the end of the yarn around the thumb of your off hand (for most people that’s the left; lefties should use the right instead). All the thumb has to do is hold the end for the first few rows of work, so the yarn doesn’t have to be tight or even knotted. Now, with your palm facing you, weave the yarn through your fingers as follows: behind the index, in front of the middle, behind the ring, around the pinkie, in front of the ring, behind the middle, in front of the index. You should end up with a row of loops around your fingers. Repeat the weaving sequence again, so that you have two loops on each finger.
On your index finger, take the bottom loop (the one closer to your palm) and lift it up over the top loop and over the top of the finger, leaving it on the back of the hand. Repeat for the other three fingers. That’s the first row of work. From here, it’s a simple matter of repeating the weaving sequence and lifting loops. You’ll only have to weave once for each row after the first, because there will always be one loop left from the last row. When your chain of stitches is as long as you need it to be, cut the yarn and pass the end through the last four loops to finish it off. The chain will look bunched up and cramped until you pull it out straight, so don’t be put off by the messy-looking mass of yarn that will develop on the back of your hand for the first few rows.

I would like your help!
Enclosed is a lengthy explanation of a project that I am organizing for the International Day of Peace on September 21. Would you please be willing to take a moment to read it AND then to participate in one of the four ways suggested?
I have a hunch that this will resonate with you! Let me hear back, please.
With gratitude and wishes for peace,
Karen


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