Making Mothers

A research project partnership

with Birmingham City University School of Midwifery

Participant's work

Community Project

Can making together improve outcomes for first time mums?

During this project first time mums have the chance to attend workshops where they can chat to a midwife about their pregnancy while working with an artist to make something special for their baby.

What’s Happening?

Stitch and paper artist Jennifer Collier has been working alongside a group of pregnant women and a trained midwife to create sewn quilts or hangings related to pregnancy journeys.

Each week the group have worked on a new square related to their own experience. Jennifer has introduced many textile processes including photo transfer, applique and button making and taught embroidery stitches such as chain, blanket and french knot.

The group has worked with Jennifer whilst chatting about pregnancy. Topics that have come up include childbirth choices, healthy eating, breast feeding and maternity leave. A midwife has been on hand to answer specific questions and to do health checks as necessary.

“WOW – we’ve potentially demedicalised a women’s labour, seen lots of talent and creativity shine, which has hopefully led to some boosted confidence (and) seen how women support women” (Midwife)


Working with…

These workshops are based at Frankley Plus Children’s Centre in Rubery.

Making Mothers is a research partnership, developed by Craftspace together with Birmingham City University School of Midwifery which aims to test an approach to the provision of antenatal care. Using a collective making activity alongside midwifery support we hope to prove the value of creative engagement as part of midwifery care, suggest new models for antenatal intervention and offer a group of pregnant women an experience at a significant moment in their lives. The project builds on sympathy group theory (Costello 2018) where group support solves challenges and difficulties and thus communities become stronger.

Making mothers is a feasibility study. We hope to make the case for a larger exploration on the impact of making on maternal wellbeing.


If you are interested in finding out more please contact us.

Where Next

A group of 5 women sit around a table, concentrated. Some are embroidering baby muslins.

Making Mothers: Project design session

Learn about the project design process.


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