EPISODE 38 :: Lauren McDonald of Working Cloth - A Discussion of the Historical and Gendered Context of Fashion & the Universality of the Running Stitch


The Close Knit podcast aims to hold space for conversation about the ways we use fiber to process world and life events

A huge thank you to this episodes' sponsor, Sugar Candy Mountain. Sugar Candy Mountain is a sustainable women's clothing line, made in LA from natural fibers. I love the attention to detail that they take with their clothing to ensure it has the longest lifetime possible - from sourcing high quality linens to using french seams and strong finishes in all their garments. They've totally eliminated plastic from their packaging, which is a huge win the fashion industry. I'm especially obsessed with their linen jumpsuits and cotton gauze, oversized breezy tops for summer-loving. Check them out online at sugarcandymtn.com and on instagram @sugar_candy_moutnain. Thanks again to Sugar Candy Mountain for sponsoring this episode of the Close Knit Podcast! 

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In episode 38, I spoke to an old friend of mine - Lauren McDonald of Working Cloth. We recorded this chat in my closet while Lauren was knitting a baby hat, for no baby in particular - which probably tells you a lot about how it is that we became such good friends. We talk about how Lauren went from being the kid at the playground making friendship bracelets to studying in human ecology (formerly known as home ec), to working in fashion in london for 3ish years, to starting Working Cloth. Lauren and I met one month after she started Working Cloth, when she was living in Australia, making sense of her place. Lauren taught a sashiko workshop in Hobart & and we discuss her study of sashiko, the history of textiles & she casually drops her thesis into conversation - "the corporotization of craft in the early 20th century with a focus on depression era quilts", which of course leads into a whole other conversation about fashion, gender, and a favorite topic of mine - the politics of pockets. 

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What I love most about this conversation, apart from everything, is the way in which Lauren articulates her place in all of this - how universal craft is, and how we can all have place in learning and teaching it. How we can contextualize culture in the global use of patchwork and the running stitch. Truly, you just have to listen because Lauren does a much better job of explaining this than I do. We talk about so much more than all this, but I'm running out of podcast intro music, so listen on for the whole chat! 

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The Close Knit Podcast is supported by the following people (& more!) through Patreon. If you'd like to support the podcast and get access to sneak peeks + additional content for patrons-only, please check out patreon! 

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Find Lauren: website | instagram  


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