Online Classes Update!
I have published my first online class for individual weavers. There will be more, but for now this is a free introductory class to give you a taste of what's to come.
Color, Pattern, Shape Part 1: Harnessing Fiber Art Design Ideas walks weavers, or other fiber artists, through an image-based exercise to help them discover, organize and analyze design ideas so they can overcome what I call FOWTS (fear of where to start) and get back to doing what they love...creating things with yarn.
Click the new Online Classroom button above to check it out, register and enroll.
Teaching weaving classes online--both to guilds and individuals--is a brave new world for sharing weaving knowledge. I look forward to seeing you there.
Online Classes in Development
There is nothing like face-to-face, in-person interactions with an instructor when it comes to learning new tools and techniques to advance your skills and increase your enjoyment of weaving. This challenging spring and summer of 2020, however, have created some obstacles to that learning process. Conference cancellations have been frustrating for all of us, even if we understand and agree with the reasons for them.
However, these obstacles are not insurmountable if we are willing to do things a bit differently. That's why I have spent my quarantine time studying and learning how to create weaving workshops and classes online, in on-demand and live formats. My goal is not to replace the in-person learning experience, but to supplement it with no-travel-required alternatives.
There is a big learning curve to become comfortable enough with the tools and technology to produce quality online instruction. But I am working on it. First step: Getting used to teaching to a dot on a phone or computer vs. actual people. Second step: Getting used to seeing and hearing myself on video.
There are many more steps before I am ready to launch my first class, but I am hoping it can happen this summer. If that goes well, I'll work on a couple more class ideas.
While I look forward to seeing you in person at one of my classes or workshops, I hope I at least get to see your face in a Zoom box soon.
If you would like to be added to my email list to be kept updated about my progress, please contact me through the contact page on this site. And I will try to be more diligent about posting updates to my Facebook page.
Welcome New Weavers
Looking for a place to learn to weave or advance your weaving knowledge and skills in the Asheville, NC, area? In addition to traveling to guilds and conferences to teach, I am now offering classes, lessons and specialized study guidance at my Western North Carolina studio.
Watching new weavers' eyes light up when they start creating cloth with their first few weft throws makes me happy. By that point in my Weaving I: Three Warps, Three Towels class, they have made it through the planning and math lessons, wound warps, threaded and beamed them and figured out what happens when they step on different treadles.
They have much more to learn of course (but, don't we all?) and lots of practice ahead, but they are turning individual strands of yarn into cloth. Soon they want to know more: "What if I do this?" or "How do I do that?"
Standing on the shoulders of the weavers who taught me, I love guiding new and experienced weavers along this journey, sharing what I've learned along the way.
Contact me if you are looking to get started, or want to explore something new in your personal weaving adventure. Classes are small--four people max at one time--and are usually on Thursdays, though I have some schedule flexibility if that just doesn't work.
Sign up for few hours of consultation or purchase a nine- or 24-hour package of classes to pursue a subject in more depth. The full Weaving I class, designed to get students comfortable with warping the loom, usually takes 24 hours.
Give me a call or send an email. Let's weave!
How & Why to Turn a Draft Interweave Webinar
I am happy to announce I'll be leading another live Interweave webinar on April 27 at 1 pm eastern time. This one will help you understand how turning a draft can simplify weaving, threading or treadling and can enhance some textile designs. But it isn't right for every situation. Learn what turning a draft means, how to do it and reasons ...'to turn, or not to turn.'
Go to http://www.interweavestore.com/how-and-why-to-turn-a-draft
If the time doesn't work, you can still register and you'll receive a link afterward to watch the recorded version.
Sutherland Handweaving Studio update
Karen and Barb Butler, who shared studio and classroom space at Sutherland Handweaving Studio, are heading in exciting new, but separate directions. The Asheville River Arts District studio will close in December 2014.
Karen will continue teaching beginning to advanced handweaving classes in the Asheville area and around the country for guilds and conferences. Check back here for updates on her teaching schedules and contact her if you'd like to schedule a class. Look for her work at the Craft Fairs of the Southern Highlands. Or if you see something in her portfolio you like, contact her to see whether it's still available. If not, she can weave another one for you.
Barb, still operating under the Sutherland brand, will continue her weaving business through a variety of wholesale outlets and a few selected craft fairs.
Weave and Learn
Handweaving can be isolating. Being able to weave with others on a regular basis can be a rich learning experience. So consider this page an opportunity to pick up tips and ideas to become a more successful weaver.
Check back often for the latest learnings.
Bobbin Winding 101: Winding a bobbin so that the weft releases consistently without pulling the selvages or getting stuck half way across the shed takes practice. An electric winder makes the process easier because both hands can be used to guide and firmly tension the yarn.
On a hand winder, try this tip I picked up in a Sharon Alderman workshop. Hold the weft firmly in your left hand as close to the bobbin as possible. Pinch the yarn tightly between thumb and forefinger so it goes on the bobbin tightly. If this burns your fingers, wrap a scrap of leather or cloth around the thread. While cranking the winder with the right hand, move the yarn quickly back and forth from flange to flange. This allows the yarn to cross itself at diagonals, similar to how it is loaded on the cone, and is less likely to get caught in layers underneath as you weave.