Stitching Hope for the Coast Creative pieces that celebrate coastal optimism for Louisiana

Create items now through the end of June. Virtual display and discussion starts online in Flickr on July 1, 2018.

Project Goals

  • To create handmade items that reflect our own views and interpretations of coastal optimism for Louisiana.
  • To implement a virtual showcase of the items, including a discussion of the foundation and inspiration for our work.
  • To have a display at one or more locations of our work that highlight creative representations of hope for the Louisiana coast (in progress).


In March 2018, Dr. Craig McClain, Executive Director of the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON), gathered together 40 scientists, science communicators, teachers, students, and more, for an event titled OCEANDOTCOMM. Dr. McClain is concerned about how much the media focuses on the loss of the Louisiana coast, instead of celebrating the success stories. The challenge he posed to the OCEANDOTCOMM participants - find a way to communicate stories of hope for the coast, stories that successfully address the local challenges of sea-level rise, diversion of the Mississippi River, subsidence of land, loss of vegetation, and more.

These stories of Louisiana "coastal optimism" certainly can be communicated through text, audio, images, and video. Dr. McClain never said we couldn't use yarn or fabric to tell the stories of hope...

Our Own Hope

If you knit, crochet, quilt, or embroider (we are open to any creations from yarn or fabric), we hope you will consider joining our virtual community that is using handmade items as a visual tool to communicate coastal optimism for Louisiana. We welcome participation of all skill levels and all ages - no creation is too basic or too advanced. We are not setting a size limit on your work. We are asking for a July 1st completion data, so that we can start our virtual showcase online in Flickr.

Where's the hope?

There are many individuals and organizations that are making a difference on the Louisiana coast. Please use these websites as a start to learn more about the successes. Remember, the mission of our project is to learn about social/environmental plans and efforts that are causing positive change for humans and animals in the ecosystems and environment of Louisiana.

Need ideas?

There are several creative ideas we have heard about! We have one person crocheting the coast of Louisiana, using colors to reflect erosion and accretion of the coast. We have another person that is thinking of crocheting the animals native to the Louisiana coast, and then using color bars to show if their populations are increasing or decreasing. Join our group over on Ravelry (Stitching Hope for the Coast) for brainstorming or for getting help to make your idea a reality!

The Organizing Team

Gabriele Kerber (left) and Laura Guertin (right) quickly learned of their shared passion for crocheting at OCEANDOTCOMM and started the Stitching Hope for the Coast project. With Gabriele from Germany and Laura from the United States, we hope the all global citizens will take a moment to see the importance of and their own connection to the challenges and successes faced on the Louisiana coast.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us at stitchingcoast@gmail.com. We also encourage everyone to share their work as they create their handmade item on social media with the hashtag #stitchingcoast.

This project idea was generated at OCEANDOTCOMM and supported by the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON).


Photos on this page were taken by Laura Guertin at OCEANDOTCOMM

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