Local artisan leads colorful fundraiser for new library building
It is estimated that more than 38 million empty plastic water bottles are hitting the landfills in America each year. Kriste-lee, local artisan and Friends of the Berryville Library board member, intends to do something about it while helping raise funds for a new library building.
The unique fabric-collaged water bottles are on display and for sale at the Berryville Library and Shelter Insurance, which is located just west of the Berryville square. They sell for just $10 each and 100 percent of the proceeds benefit the Berryville Library Building Fund.
Kriste-lee moved to Berryville from Southern California in the early 1990s and has been brightening the town ever since with her many fabric collages, paintings and abstract works of art. Those who know Kriste-lee know that her personality is as bright and colorful as her artwork. When asked how she became a Friend of the Library, she quickly replied that her good friend Carol Ann Stubbs Engskov asked her to pay $10 to join. She said it was one of the best decisions she made since the library is such a valuable resource to the community.
Kriste-lee has helped with many fundraisers in the community and at the library, but this latest artistic adventure not only benefits the Berryville Library Building Fund but also helps out our environment. As summer temperatures heat up, drinking more water is advised. But how to do this without contributing to the excess plastic water bottles cluttering our landfills? Kriste-lee has the answer. “I wanted to do something for the library that would also be good for our earth. We must stop this waste and be more concerned about our planet. My hope is the community will be encouraged to reuse these water bottles and help to eliminate unnecessary trash.”
Kriste-lee uses scraps of fabric in all different patterns and colors to make these one-of-a-kind water bottles. Each piece of fabric is hand-cut into different shapes and glued to the bottle. The fabric collage is then coated with a special formula so that the bottles can be hand-washed and reused. Kriste-lee is known for her colorful expressions and these water bottles are no exception. With more than 70 already made, the variety of designs created ensure there is one for everyone, regardless of age or gender.
The Berryville Library has been in its same 3.000-square-foot building for more than 30 years. While the community has grown and the demand for library services expanded, the space has not. A new building for the library is desperately needed. The Friends of the Berryville Library are committed to helping raise money for this new building.
“We are grateful to have Kriste-lee as our friend and really appreciate the time and talent it takes to create these water bottles. There is no more delightful way to remind your self to drink water than with a Kriste-lee original. Please come to the library or visit Shelter Insurance to pick out one for every member of your family,” said Berryville Library director Julie Hall.
All community members also have a chance to help raise money for the new library just by reading this summer. A 10,000-hour reading challenge has been issued. If the community can log 10,000 reading hours, the family of Judy G. Western will donate $1 per hour, for a total of $10,000, to the building fund.
Mary Knight, president of the Friends of the Library, acknowledges these are difficult times for many in our community.
“With all that is going on right now, it is the perfect summer to stay home, read and drink water. It feels good that we can do all that and still support the library. Our community desperately needs a library with better space for kids and families. A new building is the only way we are going to get that.”
For more information on joining the Friends of the Berryville Library or to learn more on how you can sign up for Summer Reading and support the library, visit www.berryvillelibrary.org or contact the library at 870-423-2323.