A symwerian is a self-invented word. It is a gathering where attendees decorate wearables that act as both a carrier for self-expression and a catalyst for conversation. A symwerian is ideal for topics that are taboo - a conversation that you might not feel comfortable speaking about right away, but would rather prefer to have a wearable act as your voice.

Three members, three former members and two nonmembers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints joined together on Sunday, August 26, 2018 at 1:30 in Murray, Utah to have a conversation on Mormonism. Participants were given instructional kits with a tote bag and materials to decorate with. Booklets were included with questions that would measure their ideas on Mormonism (ex. what are 3 word you would use to describe Mormonism?) After they answered the questions, participants were asked to translate their responses onto the wearable, with each material assigned to different questions.

Participants wore their totes to the symwerian, and the bags acted as voices, initiating the conversation. As attendees commented on each others’ wearables, that organically created memorable stories regarding Mormonism.

After the event, the group was given a new set of questions that would measure the amount of growth they’ve experienced during the symwerian. Then, they had to translate their responses with new materials, adding on to what was already on their shirt. This was to measure the new knowledge they’ve gained from the gathering.

August 2018