Let's Move the Needle

An Activism Handbook for Artists, Crafters, Creatives, and Makers; Build Community and Make Change!

Coming Soon


By Shannon Downey

Formats and Prices





  1. Audiobook Download (Unabridged) $24.99
  2. Trade Paperback $19.99 $25.99 CAD

Create change in the world with this inspiring guide to social activism, using art as a vehicle for creative resistance and community building, written by Shannon Downey – the artist and craftivist behind Badass Cross Stitch.

Art activism, artivism, craftivism, or the space where art and activism meet, is a powerful, ever-evolving social justice movement that continues to grow and diversify as more voices and mediums increasingly take part in it. In Let's Move the Needle, Shannon Downey, an outspoken voice in the craftivist movement for over a decade, meets burgeoning art activists where they are and provides a roadmap and accessible toolkit for every leg of their activist journey. Filled with self-reflective activities, exercises, and prompts, along with practical stories about the work of other art activists across mediums and throughout history, Let's Move the Needle educates and empowers creatives to center their art around collective action in service of political, social or community issues they are most passionate about; affirming that everyone can be a changemaker and that change-making can be generative, enjoyable, and a bit sassy!


  • An exquisite celebration of creativity, curiosity, tenacity, and delight. This book will give you the permission, agency, and excitement to start making positive change.
    Greta Johnsen, host of Nerdette podcast
  • Let’s Move the Needle is much more than a craft book ... Shannon’s warmth and wit shine through as she challenges you to step out of your comfort zone and start crafting for the greater good.
    Stephanie Rohr, author of Feminist Cross-Stitch
  • Finally, an exploration of the lightning-fast mind that is Shannon Downey ... This powerful book offers a deep understanding of craftivism and guides you to take authentic actions based on your own values.
    Julie Jackson, creator of Subversive Cross Stitch
  • Let’s Move the Needle is full of heart, humor and a major dose of how-to that inspires social change and invites us to help build a more inclusive, just, and equitable world.
    Mary Morten, President, Morten Group, LLC
  • This book allows you to step more deeply into your soul and find matters of justice that you will be willing to fight forever for truth and equity to prevail. Craft is the medium and a gloriously abundant and empathic life well-lived is the reward.
    Elena Quintana, Ph.D., justice activist
  • Shannon Downey shows that we can move that needle together, in despair, outrage, boredom, and in a joyful imagination of the world as it should be. 
    Steve Hosik Moon, Former Director of Organizing at Asian Americans Advancing Justice

On Sale
Oct 1, 2024
Hachette Audio

Shannon Downey

About the Author

Shannon Downey is the founder of Badass Cross Stitch and Seriously Badass Women, and is an artist, activist, craftivist, community builder, and general instigator. Her work moves people from passive consumers of art into engaged creators and leverages craft-based art forms to bring people together, present opportunities to transition from makers to change makers, and inspire radical hope for what is possible. Her award-winning work can be found in galleries, museums, and private collections around the world and has been featured in outlets including Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Atlas Obscura, Fast Company, and i-D, and books including Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Signs of Resistance: A Visual History of Protest in America. She is on the faculty at Columbia College Chicago and currently lives in Chicago, Illinois.

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