Meet Dawne Hoeg, Founder and Executive Director of Stitch Buffalo
While working as a professor in textile arts in the design school at Buffalo State College, Dawne Hoeg was drawn to the women in the diverse neighborhood surrounding the school. She began hosting community workshops so the refugee women could come together to share the textile disciplines from their home countries.
“I quickly realized that these women not only had an interest in building their textile skills, but there was a need for community-building,” said Dawne, Founder and Executive Director of Stitch Buffalo. “Soon we were adding financial literacy workshops to the mix to foster financial empowerment.”
In 2014, Dawne founded Stitch Buffalo, an inclusive textile art center in Buffalo with both studio and retail space. Today, this inclusive organization continues to offer the refugee women’s workshops where handcrafted goods are created to be sold at various locations throughout the community. In addition, community education programs are offered in the textile arts, often led by the immigrant members of Stitch Buffalo. A retail space is also open to the public where donated supplies, not utilized for the workshop projects, are sold at deep discounts to support the organization’s programs.
Recently, the Martin House and Stitch Buffalo came together to create a unique line of products inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s designs. Using red, black, or white as the base color of each product, the women have artistic freedom to create geometric and floral patterns when planning the product design. Many have been influenced in particular by Tree of Life, the iconic art glass pattern of the Martin House.
“This partnership is the first of its kind for our organization, and the results have been exciting” said Dawne. “Using Wright’s design aesthetic as a foundation has elevated the final products handcrafted by these talented women.”
The proceeds from the sale of these one-of-a-kind pieces support both the Martin House and Stitch Buffalo. The on-site Museum Store carries a larger selection of products from Stitch Buffalo, and we are offering a few select products from this collection online.
To learn more about Stitch Buffalo, visit stitchbuffalo.org.