I Make Things for a living...

I Make Things for a living...


 I make things for a living – and direct others in the work of making for a living.

Every day I get up, walk into my studio and decide what’s getting made that day. As a ‘maker/creator’ I am in a minority group in my community and this is something I would like to change.

I believe that mine is a community of followers. The people who want to be in the group that has the largest amount of other people. The people who prefer to be in style not creating style; who seem afraid to be or do different than what the others are doing.

In my experience makers are people who tinker, explore and discover. People who use their skills and a certain mindset to make a way, where there was none before. Makers ask questions like “What if?” and “How can I?” They aren’t afraid to dress differently, are not turned off after making a mistake and welcome new opportunities and the chance to solve problems.

So as a maker trying to change my world I ask myself the following: What if I did like the UN and set MDGs, Maker Development Goals? What kind of action would I have to take that would contribute to a community of makers?

After some self-analysis I came up with the following list.

Support education in trade skills

Seek to create a sub-culture that celebrates the individual

Identify policies that would support MSME development
Encourage lifelong learning
Promote the acquisition of assets over commodities

Foster creative thinking and real world problem solving


To be sure, I don't yet have a plan to act on the list, but I think big thinking like this must happen to bring much needed change to my community. What are you doing to be the change you want to see in your world?

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Culturama Set to Showcase Local Visual Artists at Charlestown Gallery

Culturama Set to Showcase Local Visual Artists at Charlestown Gallery


For the third year in a row the Charlestown Gallery offers an opportunity for visitors to find local artwork in one place in the heart of Charlestown.


The display includes fabric art of Island Living Studio, photography by Nevis’ Photographer of the Year Sylvester Meade, stone sculpture by Marvin Chapman; other prominent and emerging artists like Pierre Liburd; Sasha Herbert, Dexter Fassale, Juniour “Loada” Versailles and Keith Pemberton and the sculpture of Ras Laro. These artists, some more accomplished than others, have work that must be seen.

'Good things are happening in Nevis' says Deputy Premier of the island Hon. Mark Brantley.


The Gallery is located in Charlestown, obliquely opposite the Nevis Tourism Authority office. The show runs from July 20th until August 12th and can be viewed between the hours of 11 am and 3 pm Monday to Saturday except Monday August 1st


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For more information contact Deborah Tyrell here


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One Stitch at a Time

One Stitch at a Time

Several years ago, I settled in Nevis and started a family. I quickly realized that if I wanted interesting work, I would have to create it. So when my son stopped me from sewing shirts for him because they were not what the other kids were wearing, I started a gift shop. 

Starting my own business used all of me and felt like the best job I could have.  Without a boss, every issue that came up was mine to solve. I operated a bricks and mortar store, I had one person in the shop and one person at my home studio working to produce the sewn items. This meant that my shop could be open longer hours and production didn't depend only on me. It also meant that my little business was giving 3 women access to a better life, job satisfaction and greater independence.


pic and facbric ocean and islandedited

Beginning in 2008 I started to use fabrics in a new way. I call it making cloth from cloth. By stitching small pieces of cloth on top of each other my team and I make a new cloth. The things we make are unique, even if you call them by the same name. So my clutch purses and art pieces may very well be something you've never seen or never would have conceived, and each one is different because it depends on the cloth we have on hand. See photos on the website 

I often reflect on the fact that Trinidadians created an instrument and an industry from cast away oil drums. We have as excellent an opportunity in the Caribbean as anyone to build our creative sector. To create meaningful employment, link cultures, satisfy customers, expand our exports, learn new skills and build something new and different. At Island Living we are doing our part, one stitch at a time. I'd love to hear from you, if you too are in a creative industry or seeking to increase your involvement in the industry.

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 Chris Ivory Jersey