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Museum Workshop to Make Pins for Mom

A workshop at the San Bernardino County Museum on Saturday, May 12, offers the opportunity for visitors to create an embossed and embellished velvet brooch, just in time for Mother’s Day. The workshop runs from 1 to 4 p.m. or until supplies last.

According to Michele Nielsen, the museum’s curator of history, velvet has been prized as a luxurious fabric for centuries, and velvet embossed by hot metal plates or rollers can be seen in historical fabrics used for elegant clothing, accessories, and household goods such as draperies. Examples, including a velvet crazy quilt from the 19th century, are currently on view in the museum’s newest special exhibit, “Fabrics of Our Past: 1860s to 1960s.”

At the workshop, participants will imprint velvet with a stamp of their own selection; education staff will assist with the heating process needed to create the embossing. The piece can then be embellished with beads and “gemstones” before it is mounted on a backing with an attached pin to wear as a brooch or a decorative element on a hat or purse. A fee of $1 per pin is required in addition to regular museum admission.

“We inaugurated this activity during opening night for the new Fabrics of Our Past exhibit,” said Carla Rosenkild, museum educator. “Adults enjoyed creating these pieces as much as the children did, and the results were just beautiful. Any mother would be proud to wear one.”

The San Bernardino County Museum is at the California Street exit from Interstate 10 in Redlands. The museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 9 am to 5pm. General admission is $8 (adult), $6 (military or senior), $5 (student), and $4 (child aged 5 to 12). Children under five and Museum Association members are admitted free. Parking is free. For more information, visit The museum is accessible to persons with disabilities. If assistive listening devices or other auxiliary aids are needed in order to participate in museum exhibits or programs, requests should be made through Museum Visitor Services at least three business days prior to your visit. Visitor Services’ telephone number is 909-307-2669 ext. 229 or (TDD) 909-792-1462.

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