Tablet-Weaving the SDGs

Tablet-Weaving the Sustainable Development Goals

This is a four-day course in tablet weaving, not only conveying the basic principles but also trying to explore an idea that was suggested to us by Verena Winiwarter from the Austrian Academy of Sciences in 2019.

Verena is an Austrian environmental historian with an interest in forwarding the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations ( However, she realized that the progress of the SDG implementation is far behind estimates, and she suspected the representation of the goals as colored quadrangles to be part of the reason for this: they were successful as graphical markers for anyone who wanted to decorate and thus legitimize their activities as pertaining to the SDGs.

Verena approached Ellen (head of the PENELOPE project) with the idea of tablet weaving the SDGs, exploring the potential of a different type of representation that accounts for their networked nature and complexity. With Charlotte Holzer, textile conservator at the Deutsches Museum, we did a small project on the idea documented in a report of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (

With this course, participants get the opportunity not only to learn how to tablet weave, but also to discuss the idea of tablet weaving the SDGs.


11. to 15. October 2021, at 2-3 pm (Berlin time)

11. and 12. October: Basics

13. October: Verena introduces the SDG idea, Q&A, discussion with Charlotte, Verena and Ellen (no course program but weaving possible)

14. and 15. October: Weaving the SDG ribbon.


  • 18 four hole tablets (5×5 cm)
  • Cotton thread (at best mercerized cotton like in image)
  • The SDGs have 17 different colors, however you might not want to use all of them. Choose at least 5 or 6.
  • Clamps for fixing the ends of the warp to a table (if you have no clamps, knot one end to a doorknob or similar and the other to a belt around your waist)

Option 2: Get tablet-weaving kits with tablets and threads for this workshop from the Handloom Futures Trust via Malkha. You can indicate if you opt for this in the online form for the workshop registration. Once your registration has been confirmed, we will send an email with a link for purchasing a kit.

Sign in for the workshop

Please sign up and purchase your kit early, as delivery will take 2–3 weeks depending on your location. When signing up for the workshop, please indicate in the the online form if  you want to purchase a kit or not.