25 3Arts supporters
$3,782 raised of $5,000 goal
35 Days 01:59:02 LEFT
This project will only be funded if $5,000 is contributed to 3Arts by November 06, 2022, 11:59PM
    • 76% contributed
    • 24% to go

I am creating a special edition of handmade and embroidered washcloths to support mental health and wellness. Called MotherWords, these washcloths are embroidered with positive mantras in dual language that reflect real life and are socially responsible and environmentally conscious. In the coming year, I hope to develop MotherWords into a sustainable product line that will be available for purchase and follow a buy-one-give-one model.

About This Project

The idea for MotherWords first came about in 2018, after countless trips to big box stores, looking at that all-too-familiar line of home decor items with inspirational sayings that never seemed to fit my family’s experience. It was then that I decided I would create my own creative interpretation with the language of my family and my community. I began embroidering store-bought washcloths to give away and exhibit when a friend asked if she could have a set to give to her daughter who was struggling in college being so far away from home. She said that her daughter used the washcloths to clean her face every morning. Reading the words while washing was like hearing her mother’s voice at the start of each day. This helped her cultivate a positive routine and outlook. The gift of this story motivated me to make more. The washcloths continue to spark heartfelt connections whenever I share or exhibit them.

Each MotherWords washcloth design and color palette reflects my household’s mixed culture and lively energy. Font, color, and layout are handled with great care and attention. Your support will help me gain the training and equipment needed to take my vision to the next step, including producing a limited edition, first run of 100 cloths. I have already begun sourcing materials that are sustainable and researching the prototype process. I have identified environmentally responsible vendors such as Nature’s Fabric and Mohawk Paper Co. I will also create a custom website where the public can learn more and make purchases. Additionally, I will host a launch event where the washcloths will be used as teaching and engagement tools. Those who are able to contribute $100 to this campaign will receive a special limited edition MotherWords washcloth before the launch.

MotherWords washcloths are used to scrub in, scrub off, or gently wipe away anyone’s negative experiences of the day. Examples of phrases to be embroidered are: te quiero so much | I love you so much; you have his smile; en eso together | in this together; we have everything we need; respida | breath; and con cuidado | be careful.

MotherWords are a gesture of gratitude infused with love and care. They are a daily conversation with yourself, a love note, or encouragement for a child or friend. Thank you for helping me make this project a reality!

Thank yous

Contribute any amount or choose from the levels below.

  • $10
    Thank you shout out on social media (Facebook and Instagram) ($10.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $25
    Above, plus receive a surprise zine in the mail. ($23.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $50
    All of the above, plus an original postcard print created and signed by the artist. ($23.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $100
    All of the above, plus be amongst the first to receive a handmade "MotherWords" washcloth with a personal note from the artist ($43.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $250
    Be the first to receive a full set (4) of responsibly produced "MotherWords" washcloths, including 1 personalized washcloth. ($100.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $500
    All of the above, plus a personal Screen Printing Workshop for up to 3 people (screen print your own posters or t-shirts; all materials provided), plus receive a special thank you on the "MotherWords" website ($250.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $1000
    All of the above, plus a Screen Printing Party for up to 8 people (print posters, t-shirts, and tote bags; all materials provided. This donation perk includes all of the above minus the workshop for up to 3 people.) ($625.00 is tax deductible.)

Jessica Mueller

Make a Wave Artist

Jessica Mueller is a faculty member in the Design Department at the American Academy of Art. Since 2004, she has been a teaching artist with Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education (CAPE), working in Chicago Public Schools. Jessica holds an MFA …

View Jessica Mueller's profile
  • No updates yet, stay tuned!
    • Thank you to the following for contributing to 3Arts with the recommendation that we support this project.

    • Nancy Mueller

    • Natasha Julius

    • Rosalba Rodriguez

    • Eric Reyes

    • Anonymous Supporter

    • Juliet Bond

    • William Estrada

    • Hilesh Patel

    • Michael Goro

    • Shevchenko Galina

    • Mara Flores

    • Patricia RAIN Gianneschi

    • Nicole Abreu Shepard

    • Amy Rasmussen

    • Joanne Vena

    • Elisabeth Dzuricsko

    • Joanne Tepper Saffren

    • Gina Robbins

    • Kim Mueller

    • Mollie Wray

    • Salome Chasnoff

    • Joseph Spilberg

    • Juliet Alejandre

    • Anonymous Supporter

    • Andre Porter

make it work


3AP is funded in part by support from:

 Department of Cultural Affairs logo Illinois Arts Council