Sunday, July 27, 2014

First Ever Weaving Class

Our guild met with seven students at the South Valleys Library on Saturday for our first ever learn-to-weave class.  With the looms warped in advance, students and mentors alike converged upon the meeting room at 10:00 for five hours of instruction.
Jen de Jung was the primary instructor though both Beryl Moody and Igor Raven taught supplemental sections and also provided a threaded loom for the students to take turns sleying. Suzanne Woodhead introduced weavers to floating selvedges and installed them on all of the student looms.
The over-head illustrations were clear and attractive.  Jen did it all with her iPad and a bluetooth keypad.  If you remember the old days of slide projectors, we have come a long way baby.
Each weaver was assigned to a student so Igor is assisting Nancy.  I think it went a long way to eliminate frustration and provide support and encouragement since the teaching time was so short.  The students were making a sampler, weaving an inch and a half of each pattern.
I was assigned to mentor Sheila.  Or rather, I was assigned to warp this loom with Sheila's name on it and thus she became my student.
She is already comfortable weaving on a rigid heddle loom so zipped right through the patterns.  She did great.  All the students did!
And then it was time to clean up and clear out.  The students are taking the looms home with them to finish up. They have all the materials they need to complete this project and a booklet of clear instructions.  The next class is a month from now when they will learn how to warp the looms.  To be continued......

Friday, July 11, 2014

Group Warping Party


Lorene and Suzanne at their respective warping boards

What happens when eight weavers  (all with highly ingrained weaving habits) get together for a group warp-in?  Well, it turns out quite a lot happens in a few hours time and along the way, lots of laughter, occasional spicy language and time out for a cup of coffee or tea!
Here is a little background about why there was a group warping party today.  The Reno Fiber Guild is concerned that there aren't enough new weavers being created these days and this year is the year we decided to do something about it.  We offered a beginning weaving class and found seven persons who are eager to learn to weave on a shaft loom.  Several have already gotten their feet wet with rigid heddle looms, but some are entirely new to the craft.  In order that these new weavers start with a positive experience, it was decided that we would provide them with warped looms for the first session and then introduce the warping process in the second session.
Well then, we were committed, weren't we?  Gayle graciously offered her home for the group warp in.  We wound warps on a variety of warping mills and boards and beamed them on table looms and one Baby Wolf loom.  Whew!  But warps still needed to be threaded, sleyed and tied on.  So, we each trundled home with a loom to finish up the warp.   The next step will be the actual class in a few weeks and we are keeping our fingers crossed that our students will have a smooth weaving experience and want to return for their second session.
Jen and her warping mill

Julie and another warping mill
Gayle getting ready to beam on her warp
The Ashford table loom all beamed and ready to thread

Sharon at the warping board