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We will provide a community space for working on any and all fiber art projects in a friendly, convenient, and supportive environment.
166 backers pledged $10,169 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$10,169

166

The Steel City Fiber Collective is the brain-child of a long-standing knitting group in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  It all started during our semi-annual retreat last March when one of us wondered, "Why can't you rent a spinning wheel?"

Follow your dreams
Follow your dreams

We decided to create a space in Pittsburgh for crafters to try out all sorts of fiber-crafting equipment before deciding if they wanted to make the investment in purchasing equipment to learn a new craft, and the Steel City Fiber Collective was born.  We are raising money to get our physical space started.  We will be using the funds we raise for the following:

  • Finding an appropriate space to rent in Pittsburgh, PA
  • Paying the first few months of rent on the space
  • Any necessary changes or construction within the space
  • Furnishing our space with counters, displays, and other furniture
  • Purchasing fiber crafting equipment and supplies for our members to use (looms, spinning wheels, knitting machines, etc)
Panthers help too.
Panthers help too.

The Steel City Fiber Collective will provide a unique community space for crafters of all backgrounds. We want anybody and everybody to visit us to share the adventure of learning a new skill! By creating a space dedicated to learning and experimenting with fiber arts and crafts, we hope to promote a DIY culture which will enrich the lives of Pittsburghers. 

One of our rewards-- the Yinzer cowl pattern
One of our rewards-- the Yinzer cowl pattern

There are many ways a community can benefit from fiber crafts:

  • Working on crafts and art can positively affect our health and well-being (http://bjo.sagepub.com/content/76/2/50.abstract). The act itself can be meditative, and the finished project can give people a sense of accomplishment.
  • A collaborative and supportive environment can provide a sanctuary for people in a big city. We want our space to be comfortable and personal and want our members to get to know each other.
  • Hands-on activities provide quality time for spending with friends and family. Learning a new fiber craft with a loved one is a fun, educational, and kid-friendly bonding activity.
  • Fiber crafts can provide people with "unplugged" skills or hobbies. At Steel City Fiber Collective, people will connect with themselves and others instead of screens.
  • Learning fiber skills on the individual scale preserves the cultural heritage of fiber processing which is lost in fiber goods manufactured on the global scale. We want to pass on these time-tested skills on to the next generation.
Anyone can learn to use a drop spindle!
Anyone can learn to use a drop spindle!

The Steel City Fiber Collective will operate as a studio or makerspace. Users can buy day passes or monthly memberships in exchange for the opportunity to use the space and equipment with the help of experienced crafters. In addition, we will host classes and events related to spinning, weaving, knitting, dyeing, sewing, and fiber processing.

Space is an essential aspect of any makerspace, and we need your help in securing an appropriate facility in a location convenient for our members. After we find our space, we will purchase equipment and furniture for our members to use.

It's out there somewhere...
It's out there somewhere...

Our initial goal of $10,000 covers costs associated with acquiring the space, paying for the first couple months of rent, utilities, and taxes, and accounts for Kickstarter fees.

Our basic startup budget
Our basic startup budget

Yes, our starting goal sounds low for such an ambitious project! We intend to secure more traditional funding as well as crowd-sourced funding. Banks are more likely to give traditional loans for equipment rather than rent, that's why we are turning to you!

Fill the hat!
Fill the hat!

Thanks for your support!

Risks and challenges

We are just a group of friends with an idea! The Steel City Fiber Collective will be run by a group of well-rounded crafty ladies who don't have MBAs and have never run a business before. Our team has proactively attended several small business workshops and consulted with professionals to fill any gaps in our entrepreneurship skill sets.

The Steel City Fiber Collective has already faced the worst setback imaginable for us. Originally the SCFC was composed of five brilliant fiber artists, but our dear friend and cofounder Marwa Kandil passed away at the beginning of August. The remaining four of us have persevered, and we intend to make the Steel City Fiber Collective a success to honor Marwa's memory.

This is a very new business idea, and we don’t know of any other businesses quite like it. It’s very possible that we won’t get off the ground at all but our market research has demonstrated that a lot of other Yinzers* are excited about the Steel City Fiber Collective! However, even if the space doesn’t work out in the end, we promise to get our tangible rewards out, no matter what!

*Yinzer, n. Native of the city of Pittsburgh. Derived from “Yinz”, plural form of “you” in the Western Pennsylvania dialect.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    A personal thank you on the Steel City Fiber website!

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    A handwritten thank you note from all of us at Steel City Fiber.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    An exclusive "Yinzer Cowl" knitting pattern written just for this campaign.

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    47 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    A complimentary day pass to the Steel City Fiber facility!

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    18 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    A one-of-a-kind 100g skein of hand-dyed, fingering weight yarn

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    A large, one-of-a-kind, hand sewn project bag.

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    Reward no longer available 20 backers
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  7. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    A 100g skein of handspun yarn made for you personally by members of Steel City Fiber!

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    Reward no longer available 15 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $99 or more About $99

    A complimentary one month, all-inclusive membership to the Steel City Fiber facility!

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    3 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Mystery "grab bag" of goodies. This might include crafting supplies, finished objects, or even samples or previews of items we will sell in our Etsy shop or Ravelry page in the future.

    We promise no fun fur or glitter-adorned thingies.

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    A complimentary three month, all-inclusive membership to the Steel City Fiber facility!

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    1 backer
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Equipment sponsorship! Your name will be on a plaque on the equipment that YOU helped to buy!

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    Limited 4 backers
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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    A complimentary one year, all-inclusive membership to the Steel City Fiber facility!

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    0 backers
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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    A complimentary LIFETIME all-inclusive membership to the Steel City Fiber facility!

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Funding period

- (30 days)