Weaving resurgence supports local micro-businesses

Weaving resurgence supports local micro-businesses

The traditional Aboriginal practice of weaving is enjoying a resurgence according to local Aboriginal owned and operated business Speaking in Colour.

As a result, they are now supporting 13 micro-businesses to meet increasing demand for unique, locally made Aboriginal weaving.

Speaking in Colour Managing Director, Cherie Johnson says the revival of this traditional practice has been inspiring and there is now a whole new generation of weavers ready to share this practice far and wide.

“Over the years Speaking in Colour has supported dozens of micro-businesses to be established as suppliers with us in one way or another – including dancers, weavers and teachers,” Cherie said.

“Currently we are supporting 13 weaving suppliers with products on our online shop.

“I would like to honour my weaving cultural teachers. Firstly, an Aunt from Gumbaynggirr Country, who when I was 16 and sad after losing my Nan sat with me all day teaching me how to make string using stringy bark, then showed me how to loop a dilly bag using that string. As I’ve grown older, I’ve learnt to serve my community and my teachers. With a servant heart the teachers appear and impart. Aunty Ellen Treverrow of the Ngarrindjuri people first taught me the coil technique. I have had the honour of learning from the Aunts and visiting her on Country with my mother and daughter, one of my greatest joys.

“Years ago, when I was first started teaching weaving not many had this knowledge, now many in our community do. I am proud that many in our region have either learnt directly from Speaking in Colour or people that have been taught by Speaking in Colour.”

All the weaving products purchased through Speaking in Colour include the name of the weaver and the weaver’s Country.

“Every piece recognises the artist and their Country and we are in the process of recording artist statements from all of our weavers and these will be available online soon,”’ Cherie said.

“People that purchase woven products will be able to scan the QR code and hear direct from the artist who wove the product.”

Supporting community is at the heart of Speaking in Colour’s approach to business with the corporate and education arms of the business supporting their social impact programs.

“We firmly believe this is how all businesses should be operating. Giving back to the community is just the right thing to do and look at the reward – a new love for a 50,000 year old skill in a modern world.”


IMAGE | The traditional Aboriginal practice of weaving is enjoying a resurgence.

Speaking in Colour

Speaking in Colour is a 100% Aboriginal owned and operated business founded in 2010 by Cherie Johnson with the mission to make a difference in the delivery of Aboriginal education by providing training that is fun, affordable and in the spirit of reconciliation.

Today, Speaking in Colour is the leading provider of training, cultural experience and educational resources in the Newcastle and Hunter region of NSW. We are a collective of like-minded educators working in several roles within the education sector.

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