The Textile Museum of Canada’s Collective Threads project welcomes the voices of community members who represent a range of cultural identities, ages, genders, sexualities, abilities, and religions as they share their lived experiences. Featured video narratives acknowledge our common experiences of navigating the challenges of everyday life through perspectives offered by newcomers familiarizing themselves with Canadian culture and immigrants who have spent years establishing their lives here. By understanding the things we share in common, we will be better equipped to accept and understand our differences.

Collective Threads is organized into nine modules that highlight aspects of day to day life common to all Canadians and feature the stories of nine immigrants and newcomers. Each module is accompanied by a downloadable resource guide that provides activities and lines of inquiry to create opportunities for organizations working with diverse communities to foster active spaces for listening, sharing and the creation of enriched cultural content. The resource guides also provide links to resources suggested by the participants and our partner organizations. Transcripts of the interviews in each section are available for download in English and French.

Many of the participants have chosen objects from the Textile Museum of Canada’s collection to engage with as they share the expectations, assumptions, obstacles, and values they brought with them and encountered as they arrived and settled in Canada. Participants were also invited to share and speak to objects and textiles that are significant in their personal journeys and lives. Participants explore how textiles and other objects act in our lives as objects of expression, communication, comfort and protection and powerfully embody memories associated with hope, growth and struggle.

Collective Threads is produced by the Textile Museum of Canada, supported by a grant from CIRA’s Community Investment Program.

To offer feedback, please email: info@textilemuseum.ca.