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New Conference Seminar: Felting with Handwovens

Felting with Handwovens — Ella Strawman

Saturday 3-5:30 PM

IMG_3122 IMG_3132In this seminar, we will discuss the option of weaving with a mixture of cotton and wool. By felting your handwovens, you create a uniquely textured fabric. We will discuss the process involved in felting, the correct types of fiber and why they work, further application of this technique to your own work, and possible ideas for using your new fabric beyond scarves and other neck wearables.

Details on Saturday Seminar’s page

Ella’s website is here!

Exhibit and Fashion Show Deadline Extended!

spiral_clockWhoo-hoo! More time!!

We’ve extended the deadline for you to send it all your fabulous Members’ Exhibit and Fashion Show pieces.

The deadline for sending in your form is the same– postmarked by May 12  or delivered by May 15, but you now have until June 12th to send it your exhibit pieces or garments.

Details here and you can download the entry form here.

So you want to take a rigid heddle class?

Think weaving conferences are only for advanced weavers who even know what a ‘tied weave structure’ is?  Do you really enjoy weaving on a Cricket, Flip or other small rigid heddle loom? We have classes for you too!

Here’s a suggested program:

Friday afternoon:  Plain Weave Isn’t Plain taught by Austin’s own  Sandra Doak. Check out her website for a look at Sandra’s own take on artful weaving.

Saturday morning:  Demystifying Drafts & Designing on the Fly  with Susan Fricks. Susan owns Yarnorama! , “A Playground for the Fiber Obsessed” .  This class is great for all weavers, not just rigid heddle.

Saturday afternoon: Hit the public weave in  to try out what you’ve learned while the instructors are around

Sunday morning: Weaving with Futuristic Yarns with Giovanna Imperia — because what’s more inspiring than exploring interesting and usual yarns?

Seminar: Open Your Weaving to New Possibilities

Sunday Morning
Mickey Stam, Instructor


Looking for new ways to use your weaving and to explore new sources of inspiration?

Based on the immensely popular Weavers & Spinners Society of Austin study group, this seminar opens the world of fine art, particularly painting and sculpture, to help us weavers and other fiber artists explore our individual creativity.  By considering the elements of the different art forms, how they can apply to weaving,  we can then brainstorm how to apply that information to our own work.

With a life-long interest in the sources of artistic inspiration, Mickey Stam recently received Certificate of Excellence (Level I) from the Handweavers Guild of America and also has a Masters Degree in the History of Decorative Arts in America from the Smithsonian Institution/Parsons School of Design.

She is anxious to share some of what she has learned about creativity and how us weavers can develop our own unique vision and style by gaining inspiration from other art forms.

New Class Added: Plain weave isn’t plain!

Plain Weave Isn’t Plain – Sandra Doak, Friday Afternoon

Austin WinterThere are many techniques to weave designs and images into your plain weave cloth. I will be teaching hand manipulated techniques and speaking about plain weave designs created by order of color. Depending on the scale and contrast, the results can be subtle or dramatic. Using these techniques are easy and suitable for both beginning and experienced weavers.  Details on Friday’s Seminars page.

Here’s what one of Sandra’s students has to say:

As an advanced weaver, I took Sandra’s Plain Weave Isn’t  class a year ago and completely enjoyed myself, opening up new creative opportunities. I was in the class with beginners and we all had fun exploring plain weave from different perspectives.  Sandra is a very organized, effective teacher with decades of weaving, designing and teaching experience.  I highly recommend this class for any weaver. 

Sandra Doak is a veteran weaver and cum laude graduate of Kent State University’s B.F.A. program, 1990. From 1991 until 2004 she owned and operated two weaving studio store fronts and taught weaving and related topics as she moved with her family from Ohio to North Carolina, Arkansas, and finally Austin, Texas.

Other ventures along the way included; starting a summer art camp for kids in Ohio, teaching at the Art Center in Charlotte, N.C. and starting a weaver’s guild, “Fiber Interest Guild” in Arkansas. From 2007 to 2011 she lent her expertise to get a weaving studio and yarn store off the ground in Wimberley, TX. Sandra has also shown and sold her work in various galleries in all four states.

Since 2013 she has been sharing studio space with several like-minded fiber artists in South Austin and Sandra currently sells one-of-a-kind woven wearables.

Featured Class: Upcycling Sweater Yarn for Weaving

Pam James yarn1Looking for an almost endless supply of interesting yarns?    When you think about weaving with sweater yarn does that stuff your Grandma knit with come to mind? Think again! Thrift store sweater ravelings have yielded wonderful cottons, chenille, great tweedy warp yarns, slubby stuff, metallics, multi-color plys, variegated yarns, ribbon yarns, great novelty yarns and even silk. . . all at a fraction of the cost of retail. Spend a Saturday afternoon and see how it’s done – or undone!

In this class students will learn how to assess the suitability of a sweater as a yarn source, predict the kind of yarn a sweater will yield, retrieve yarn from recycled sweaters, and see how the resulting yarns performed as a woven yarn.

Pam James has been weaving for about 10 years. Pam was active in the Pikes Peak Weavers Guild in Colorado Springs before moving to Austin 2012. During her weaving career she has woven almost exclusively with reclaimed sweater yarns. She has also been active in WSSA, scheduling and curating gallery shows including one at the Austin Airport in 2014. In 2010, she won “Best Rigid Heddle Project” in the “Not just for Socks” weaving contest in Handwoven Magazine. In 2013, Pam led WSSA’s Study Group, You Wove with What?!

Pam is teaching ” Repurposing Sweater Yarns” twice — on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning.

Featured Weaver: Su Butler

Starfleet Commander:
Su Butler

Su for bioWe’re thrilled to have Su Butler as our featured teacher  and judge for this conference.

Weaving and color have been my passions for nearly 40 years.   I love playing with yarns and dyes and then blending them in weave structures, creating my own unique designs.  Everything from plain weave to jacquard intrigues me.  Since earning my BFA in weaving and watercolor painting from the University of Northern Colorado I’ve taught private students and for guilds, regional and national and international conferences.

“I have always loved to work with my hands, beginning weaving at age three.  To me weaving is a tactile dialogue – a puzzle to solve.  Given limited elements and equipment I am left to answer creative questions, each answer pushing me to grow as a craftsperson and artist.”

Author of The Answer Lady column and numerous articles in HANDWOVEN and WEAVERS magazines, The Complex Weavers Journal and my first book, Understanding Rayon Chenille, released in 2002. Leader of Complex Weaver’s Tied Weaves Study Group.