Richlands Seniors Arts & Crafts: Beaded Scarves
Sunday, November 04, 2018
Week 2 of my adventures in teaching our local seniors at the Richlands Senior Services Center how to reawaken some long forgotten skills. My goal is to get them more socialized, and working those brain cells with creativity, and using those fine motor skills. They are teaching me better ways to communicate especially for those with hearing issues and vision impairment or blindness. Explaining how to do a craft to those who cannot see is making me understand other ways of showing someone how to do a craft or skill. I am so proud of their genuine persistence and ability to find their unique way to do something that most of us take for granted because we can see.
Our second week craft was to make beaded fleece scarves they could keep for themselves or give as gifts. I had prepped the fleece at my home by pre-cutting it and doing the fringe. Their objective was to bead each fringe and knot them. Beading fleece with pony beads is not an easy task and I had them using toothpicks to feed the fleece into the openings. They chose their color themes. I had over 17 seniors doing the scarves with 3 having vision impairment or blindness. I passed around the scarf I made at home that was beaded and appliqued so they had their example of a finished product. It took some time getting them to pick out their supplies and it helped me better in my preparations for large classes on how to fine tune it. They definitely gave me their input.
Some finished by the end of our day and others brought their scarf home to work on finishing it. I told them it was not a race to get it completed but a learning experience and to take their time. I am now carrying in my car the fleece appliques and my sewing kit since they prefer I hand sew the appliques on for them. Its a personal touch and gives me the opportunity to talk with them about how they feel about their abilities, get their feedback, and well the opportunity to give them a hug and let them know how proud I am of them for not giving up. I have been taking their pictures with their scarf proudly displayed on them. Those smiles are just plain eye-opening.
I think the thing that is motivating me the most is their enthusiasm and the sound of their happy chatter. It had to be the first time I had to stop them during the day to say "Hey, guys we've got to put the projects aside its lunch time." Some just plain did not want to stop and once I explained there was no deadline in getting it completed it helped but they still did not want to stop. Kind of reminded me of telling my teenage son, "Dinner ready, please stop computer gaming. Its time to eat with your family."
Here are some pics of my proud seniors.