Join us in Warrnambool for the Small Things Festival, on Saturday 20th October – Book Now!

The Small Things Festival will be held on Saturday 20 October on the civic green and surrounding venues in Warrnambool. 9am-3pm.

The Small Things Festival has been made possible through a Community Development Fund grant from the Warrnambool City Council and financial sponsorship by the Glenelg Hopkins CMA, along with many volunteers, groups and organisations who are all coming together to help share and celebrate the small things which we can all embrace in our everyday lives, for future sustainability.

In sharing the stories in a festival environment, it is hoped the broader community will more willingly appreciate and adopt the behavioural changes which our future world needs.

Engaging the Ecology and Arts to present and share stories of sustainable practice.

Fun things to do.

We are pleased to present a series of workshops and presentations aimed at utilising the resources around us for sustainable practice – sharing small sustainable skills and ideas.

Mending, recycling, reinventing.  There’s something in our program for everyone

We’re celebrating the festival with discounted prices for all workshops.

NGT ecologists will also be providing topical presentations around integrating local ecology within our townscape and local landscape.

Big time fun for the smallest environmentalists will be provided on the civic green through workshops (bookings required) and lots of other activities such as a threatened species treasure hunt and water bug exploration.

Fringe workshops at the Archie Graham community rooms will allow attendants to learn in a quiet and intimate environment.

Venture away from the civic green to experience some of Warrnambool’s natural environments up close and personal. We will be running two guided walks through the back blocks of Lake Pertobe to showcase some of the flora, fauna and critical habitat that this area of our town holds. You can up do date through the festival website, or via the festival’s facebook page, but keep reading to check out some of what’s in store.



Beeswax Wraps                                                                                                                                                            

Tutor: Dianne Membrey from Wrapped with Love

Time: 9:00am – 10:00 am

Cost: $25 bookings via here

Where: Archie Graham- community programs room 1

Reduce the use of plastic in your home with this fun and simple workshop. Beeswax wraps are a reusable alternative to single- use plastic and cling food wrap.

Made by infusing pieces of cotton with beeswax and a range of oils, the waxy coating makes the cloth waterproof, yet breathable. Wraps can be used to cover food for keeping in the fridge, snacks and sandwiches for lunches and greens for the crisper.

In this workshop, Dianne will teach participants the techniques required to make beeswax wraps and everyone will take home 3 wraps in their choice of fabric.

Visible Mending – Patching holes, rips and tears using Fletcher Jones fabric scraps

Tutor: Sue Ferrari

Time: 9:00 – 10:00 am

Cost: $25 bookings via here

Where – Archie Graham centre community programs room 2

Mending is a valuable life skill. It prolongs the life of your clothes, unleashes your creativity, saves you money and reduces your impact on the environment.

ABC War on Waste tells us that “Australians are currently disposing of 6,000 kilograms of fashion and textile waste every 10 minutes.” Extending the life of your clothes not only makes good sense, it’s essential for our environment!

Join Sue to learn a simple hand stitching technique to create a beautiful visible patch using Fletcher Jones fabric scraps, embracing the rich textile history of Warrnambool.

Bring along: An article of clothing or textile item that needs a little patch or two. All other materials supplied.


Presenter: Cherie Hayden-Miller

Time: 9:30 – 10:15

Where: civic green

Cost: free, registration via here

Ease into the festival with a mindful session of yoga on the civic green with Cherie Hayden-Miller.

Suitable for all ages. BYO mat

How to make Sauerkraut

Tutor: Kylie Treble

Time: 10:00 – 10:30 and 1:00- 1:30

Where: civic green

Cost: $10 bookings taken on the day via Kylie’s stall

Kylie believes that food preparation should be a creative adventure!  It is much more than just preparing food to eat. It is a quest to match seasonal, available ingredients to people’s taste preferences, their situation, the weather: to arrive at nourishing, tasty food that brings people together strengthening their connection with each other and with nature.

Join Kylie for this short hand’s on demonstration on one of our most well- known lacto-fermented vegetables, Sauerkraut.

Sustainable/ Resourceful Gardening habits

Tutor: Kylie Treble

Time: 11.30 – 12.00 and 2:30 – 3:00pm

Where: civic green

Cost: $10 bookings taken on the day via Kylie’s stall

Kylie Treble lives in a place of wonder, a shared permaculture- style garden and real- food focused kitchen. Her gardening ethos is based upon sustainable intentions, observation, personal responsibility, environmental respect and above all diversity.

In this short hands on workshop, Kylie will share some helpful tips on how to create good sustainable habits in our gardens 

Mending and Repairing Hand knits                                                                                                                

Tutor : Georgie Nicolson from Tikki Knits

Time-  11:30 – 1:30

Cost: $50 limited bookings via here

Where: Archie Graham centre community room 1

This class will take you through a number of different techniques for darning and mending holes, both big and small. If you’re a sock knitter or just someone with worn elbows or clumsy kids, this collection of techniques will prove invaluable, as you develop a set of tools to help extend the life of your hand knits.

This class will focus on techniques relevant to both visible and invisible mending and will introduce elements of darning, reknitting, weaving, grafting and patching. Participants will receive a take- home booklet with references and links to the techniques covered in class.

Pre-requisite: Basic Knitting skills

Class requirements:

  • Please bring to the class a blocked swatch measuring approximately 30cm by 30cm in a light coloured DK/8ply yarn to practise techniques on
  • Tapestry needle
  • Spare DK/8ply weight yarn in contrasting colours
  • Sewing needle and thread
  • Darning mushroom or egg (not essential but handy: if your kids have wooden play food just nick one of their eggs or applesJ)


Eucalyptus Dyeing

Tutor: Jude Stewart

Time: 12.30 – 1.30

Cost: $25 bookings via here

Where: Archie Graham Centre community room 2

This is a workshop for textile enthusiasts who would like to learn more about natural dyeing from our most abundant tree, the eucalyptus.

Examples of dyed fabrics and products will be on display for viewing and discussion on the technique. Leaves and seeds from local eucalyptus trees will be available for participants to create samples of eco dyeing on wool and silk fabrics. The technique involves bundling the fabric with leaves and seeds and boiling.  No harmful chemicals are needed as eucalyptus leaves possess natural properties that fix the colour to the fabric.

Note taking is a must so bring along pen and paper. Because of the limited time participants will need to take their bundles home to dye, of course with clear instruction on the dye process.

Fashion Upcycling: Make a Denim Beret

Tutor: Jaimee Millar

Time : 2-3

Cost: $25 bookings via here

Where: Archie Graham Centre community room 1

In this workshop Jaimee will teach you the skills to become a fashion-waste-warrior as you convert jeans and denim textiles destined to landfill into your own upcycled and customised beret.

Denim takes up to 12 months to decompose in landfill. Extending the life of clothing by a further 9 months reduces carbon, waste and water footprints by around 20-30%.

“Waste in fashion can be redesigned and minimised. It can be a massive problem or could be an untapped never-ending resource.” – Fashion Revolution

Class requirements: BYO sewing machine

Walks and Talks

Finding nature at Lake Pertobe

Times 9.30 – 11.00 and 12:30 – 2:00

Cost free – limited places available – bookings available soon

Where: Meet at the railway pedestrian crossing at the end of Gilles St.

Join Nature Glenelg Staff for a walk around the back areas of Lake Petrobe and learn about waterbirds, fish, vegetation and some of the rarely seen critters which call this reserve home. This will be an approximately 3km walk and participants are encouraged to wear sturdy shoes, carry a drink bottle and also wear a hat.



Butterfly Gardens

Presenter: Bryan Haywood (Nature Glenelg Trust)

Time 11.30 – 12.15

Cost free – limited seating available

Where : Archie Graham centre Community room 2

Hear local expert Bryan Haywood talk on the local butterflies and how to establish a butterfly attracting garden. Learn about the local species and how to design a native garden that will please people and wildlife alike.

Children’s workshops and activities

We are pleased to provide a range of free creative and sustainably focused workshops and activities for children, hosted by experienced tutors and volunteers.

Workshops require bookings with limited spaces available. To ensure as many children as possible can participate, children are limited to one booked activity only but there will be a range of other activities to keep the younger ones entertained. Children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult.

Don’t fear if you miss out on booking, there will be a bunch of activities and creative sustainable engagement to be found on the civic green which do not requiring bookings.


Time : 9 – 10

Where: civic green

Cost: free, children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult, limited bookings via here

Join in on  this super cute and easy nature play activity. Children will make creative sculptured creatures utilising natural materials; clay, seedpods, grass, twigs and bark.

Felted Coils

Time: 11:30 – 12:30

Where: civic green

Cost: free, children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult, limited bookings via here

Learn how to create a brightly coloured coil from hand dyed merino wool.  Children will take home a coil that can be made into a funky fashion accessory, such as hair tie or bracelet.

Pom Poms

Time: 12:45 – 1:45

Where: civic green

Cost: free, children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult, limited bookings via here

Pom poms are always fun to make and an easy activity for the smallest hands. Children will use scraps of wool, cotton and fabric strips to create brightly coloured fuzz balls of fun.

Illustrated seed bundles

Time: 2 -3

Where: civic green

Cost: free, children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult, limited bookings via here

Learn a little bit more about local flora, creating something beautiful and practical too.  Using recycled paper, and a variety of drawing materials, create a gift package of pre-collected seeds ready to plant. 

Waterbug exploration

Glenelg Hopkins CMA will be hosting a pop-up wetland where children can get up close and personal with macroinvertebrates (aka waterbugs) from some of our local waterways.


Alongside our workshop program, the Small Things is pleased to present a range of further activations such as F Pop artist markets presented by F Project, stalls from community groups and agencies, artist residences, walking tours and a stellar exhibition opening at WAG.

Warrnambool Art Gallery

Exhibition Opening – October 20th at 11 am

Paul Jennings: UNREAL!

(Exhibition runs until February 24, 2019)

Paul Jennings AM is one of Australia’s best loved storytellers. His books have sold millions of copies, won countless awards, been translated into 18 languages and turned into a television series. WAG presents a magical, imaginary immersive world expressed through his writing, characters and themes and include original works from illustrators he has collaborated with over the years.

Join in the opening celebration and Allen and Unwin book launch of Jennings’ newest book, A Different Boy with Paul Jennings and illustrator, Geoff Kelly, followed by a book signing for kids.

Lachlan Farrington