Posted by:  Len

Thanks to Living Local Gig Harbor for a great article (on page 38) about Surayia, the women of Arshi and Threads.  Sarah Polyakov really took an interest in the story and did a lot of research on it.  She’s a film maker herself, so we had interesting discussions and discovered a lot common.

Related to this, we will be making an announcement soon about our first film festival screening.  Stay tuned.


Posted by:  Cathy and Len

Threads has reached a major milestone, picture lock.  We’ve finished editing and changes to the film’s story line.  Now we’re moving to the final but crucial part of post-production:  final music, color correction, sound mix, and making the masters for future copies of the film.  So there is still a lot to do, but the time when we can begin showing the finished version of Threads to you and the world is in sight.

We are thankful to everyone who has supported Threads over nearly five years.  Your help and encouragement has carried us this far and will get us across the finish line!

You can find the film finishing campaign at this link. Some of the friends of Threads tell why they have supported the project.  Please share this link with people who are interested in a film that tells the stories of unconventional women who followed a different path to economic self-sufficiency and that challenges some common views of Bangladesh.  There will be more stories from friends of the film in future posts.

Posted by Cathy and Len

Here is our latest newsletter, a Mothers’ Day tribute.  You can subscribe to the quarterly updates from Threads by going to the website and adding your name to our mailing list.  We do not sell or share our information.

Guest post by:  Donna Spisso

Donna and Surayia.  Photo used with permission.

Donna and Surayia. Photo used with permission.

My husband and I traveled to Dhaka to attend a wedding. I knew I would not miss the opportunity to visit Surayia Rahman, with whom I had the pleasure to know while I lived and worked in Dhaka as a teacher at the American International School 1994-2001. In those days, Surayia’s work was sold through expatriate volunteers. One of the elementary teachers, Phyllis, made part of her house available for shoppers two afternoons a week. When Phyllis asked if I would like to volunteer, I agreed and thus began a beautiful friendship that I treasure to this day.

I thoroughly enjoyed showcasing the work and learning about Surayia’s art. Helping with the exhibitions, held biannually, was also a lot of fun. Surayia and the women she had trained to embroider would demonstrate the techniques, and people loved meeting and chatting with the artist, who was always gracious, full of anecdotes and passion about her work. Eventually, I took over the responsibility of insuring that Surayia’s art would continue to have a market. Since she retired, she turned her designs over to the Salesian Sisters. I visited the Salesian convent where I bought a tapestry for a wedding present, happy to see that the quality was very much the same as I remembered. Then I made my way to Surayia’s home and spent a lovely hour with her, reminiscing about old times.
Displaying completed artwork based on Surayia's designs at the Salesian convent.  Photo used with permission.

Displaying completed artwork based on Surayia’s designs at the Salesian convent. Photo used with permission.

Posted by:  Len

With all best wishes for a happy and peaceful 2014, here is a link to our latest newsletter.  There is a lot going on with Threads as we come to the end of a very productive 2013.

Many thanks to everyone who has contributed to this project.  We rely completely on your support to tell the inspiring story of Surayia and the women she worked with.  We are very grateful for the assistance!

Alpona, Surayia Rahman design. Photo copyright Anil Advani and Kantha Productions LLC.

Alpona, Surayia Rahman design. Photo copyright Anil Advani and Kantha Productions LLC.