WRITTEN BY CLUTCH PARTICIPANT, DIANE GUISON
As I take down our Christmas tree at home, I looked back on the eventful Christmas I had being part of CLUTCH. I remember feeling the Christmas spirit as early as the beginning of November. The CLUTCH girls were all invited to the Kapisanan’s annual Parol workshops that day, along with the past and present volunteers, interns, workshop/program participants, mentors, facilitators, staff, board members and community supporters. Everyone brought their creativeness with them as they work on their beautiful parols to raise funds for Kapisanan.
Charise, Vic and I were all first timers and it took us a whole afternoon to finish just one parol. I must say, making a parol for the first time can be very tiring and time consuming, but once we got the hang of it, it became a lot easier. Excited after finishing one parol after 5 hours, I went ahead and started another one. I didn’t get to finish the second one that day so I had to come back and finish it. After I’m over and done with it, I thought of another idea and started making another one.
It was perfect because we had all the time in November to make parols. Eager to meet Kapisanan’s crazy goal to make 100 parols, I just kept on thinking of ideas one parol after the other as the time passed by and approached the day that all the parols that have been waiting for their debut have been waiting for.. the Krismas Bazaar!!
When I got there on December 3rd, everyone was already busy preparing their tables for the bazaar. The parols were already hanged beautifully at the shop waiting for someone to take them and give them a new home. It was the first time the parols were shown and sold to the public. The CLUTCH girls were also busy finishing up their blockprints and helping out in the preparation.
While printing our handmade Christmas card blockprints for the bazaar, Kristina told me someone was buying one of the parols I made so I should meet them. Thrilled, I stopped printing and quickly went upstairs to meet the people who are going to give my parol a new home. Alas, I was not quick enough so I didn’t get to talk to them but at least I got to see them as they walk away with the parol I made. That was the highlight of that day! Glad to help Kapisanan in my own little way to raise funds to continue to inspire and support emerging young artists like us through their workshops/programs in Toronto.