by John Aldrich
Traditional Navajos have a distinctive style of dress. For the women it includes tops made of panne velour fabric and long, full skirts made either of velour or cotton fabric. Part of the giveaway at each food run is fabric that the Elders can use to make these items.
We had enough material to produce 977 three-yard pieces of panne velour and 500 four-yard pieces of cotton fabric. The challenge was figuring out an efficient way to cut all this into the required sizes. With the genius of Art Sleeper's engineering mind, a clever system was devised that allowed our volunteers to accomplish this task which took place over a period of a month.
This photo shows how spindles of metal pipe were inserted into the rolls and then suspended from our warehouse scaffolding.
The final result of all this effort is enough fabric for the Elders to last through both the spring and fall food runs.