Avondale Library Hosting Free Bib & Tucker Sewing and Quilting Programs

Bib & Tucker Sew-Op is holding quilting and sewing programs at Avondale Regional Library



Are you interested in learning how to sew quilts and other items? 

Then take advantage of the Avondale Regional Library’s new partnership with Bib & Tucker Sew-Op, a Woodlawn-based nonprofit.

Activities include Fun with Felt, a monthly sewing class designed for young folks on the second Tuesdays, and sessions for adults called Sew-Up Quilters, offered the first, third and fourth Tuesdays at Avondale Library. 

The next Bib & Tucker Fun with Felt session is Tuesday, October 12, from 10:30 a.m. to 11:20 a.m. at Avondale Regional Library. Registration is required for this program. Email Ellen Griffin of Avondale Library at ellen.griffin@cobpl.org.

Learn more about how Avondale Regional Library offered space for Bib & Tucker to hold its quilting and sewing programs this year by reading BPL’s Q & A interview below:

Q) Tell some of the history of Bib & Tucker.

 A) Lillis Taylor, executive director: Ms. Annie Bryant is my co-founder. She and I met in 2010 and started a sewing group at Inglenook Library. Since we started meeting at Inglenook, the library system has always had a special place in my heart. In 2012, we moved to Desert Island Supply Company in Woodlawn and chose the name Bib & Tucker Sew-Op. 

Bib & Tucker is British slang for a woman's finest clothes. We incorporated as a 501c3 in 2014. Ms. Annie was in her mid-60s when we met; I was in my early 30s. Because she and I are a multi-racial, multi-generational duo, the Sew-Op was founded to foster diverse relationships.

Q) How did Bib & Tucker and Avondale Regional Library come together for this new collaboration?

A) Ellen Shade of Avondale Library): The ladies from Bib & Tucker are our patrons and have worked with us in the past. When they were continuing their programs virtually, a few of the ladies came here to Avondale to use the library WiFi to zoom. At one point, we put chairs outside the library entrance for them so that they could safely sew and zoom together. 

At the time I wished we could do more, and as soon as our meeting rooms reopened I contacted Bib & Tucker to find out what they needed and how we could work together. We have a strong following for adult arts and crafts programming here at Avondale, and I felt we could complement each other and help each other out. 

 A) Viola Ratcliffe, program manager of Bib & Tucker: We have a great relationship with Birmingham's Public Libraries, and have held events at Avondale Public Library in the past, including sewing sessions for The March Quilts. When Avondale librarian Ellen Griffin reached out to us about using the library's meeting room for the Sew-Op Quilters, we immediately took her up on the offer! 

Bib & Tucker has been without a building since 2020, and for a while we were only meeting virtually. Ellen approached us at the perfect time because we were making the transition back to in-person programming and were looking for meeting spaces.

 Q) Describe the weekly quilting circle held at Avondale- what takes place, how to sign up 

 A) Viola Ratcliffe of Bib & Tucker: Our weekly sessions of the Sew-Op Quilters take place on the first, third, and fourth Tuesday of each month from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The sessions are open to anyone regardless of sewing experience, and they are a great way to connect with sewists, fiber artists, and quilters from across the Birmingham community.

During our meetings we work on various sewing and quilting projects. Our members will also lead sewing workshops for the group as well. If anyone would like to join us, they can send an email Viola Ratcliffe at viola@bibandtuckersewop.org. 

Q)Describe the monthly Bib & Tucker with Felt workshop held at Avondale Library.

A) Viola Ratcliff of Bib & Tucker: Fun with Felt takes place on the second Tuesday of each month and is an introduction to the incredible art of sewing, designed for our youngest makers. Each month, families will engage in maker learning through DIY hand-sewing projects and fiber art play centers. 

The activities are geared towards younger children (ages 6 months and up) and the sewing projects are appropriate for anyone age 4 and up. Registration is required for this program. To register, e-mail Ellen Griffin at ellen.griffin@cobpl.org.

 Q) How excited are you to partner with Avondale Library on this new collaboration? 

A) Viola Ratcliff of Bib & Tucker: Sooo excited! We have partnered with Avondale Library in the past, but not to this extent. The fact that they are so enthusiastic about this collaboration, really speaks to the library's support of the Sew-Op and of the Birmingham arts community. 

We are just so grateful to the Avondale Public Library their amazing librarians and staff! Ms. Ellen, Ms. Cas, and Ms. Carla have been so incredible and we would not be able to host these programs without them. We love our libraries and will continue to support them however we can!