Saturday, March 17, 2012

Rigid Heddle Weaving Classes

In preparation for my upcoming classes, I've been sampling many different yarns and projects on my Schacht rigid heddle looms. The smallest loom, the cricket is great for scarves and narrow panels and I've used the 15 inch Flip loom to make table runners, placemats, dish towels and a garment.
I might mention that I am now a dealer for Schacht products. For a short time I'm offering 20 % off of the retail price. Students need to order two weeks before classes begin to ensure your loom arrives in time.

These looms are perfect for road trips. The travel bags are roomy enough to contain everything you need for a project and pack in the car easily. I took both of them last week as we drove cross country to visit family. While there, I finished two scarves and fabric for a vest.

A friend generously donated a bag of yarn for my classes. Thank you Jamie! Most of it was knitting yarn. And since I hope to recruit knitters to my classes and encourage them to use the looms to use up their leftover stash yarn, I needed to try it in a project. I had an idea for a vest using three panels. The yarn was a little softer with more give than I'm used to. But the tension held up okay. It wove up nicely.

 After I pinned the finished fabric pieces together, I realized it needed more length. So I set up the cricket loom and whipped out a narrow panel with the same two colors but threaded differently for a contrasting fabric. I used the darker fabric at the bottom on the front panels and as a yoke on the back. I really love how this all came together. It can be worn several ways and can be easily sized smaller by weaving shorter pieces. I think I may put this in pattern form for my advanced students in a later class.

Working with these looms is so exciting. Set up is quick and the project almost weaves itself. The rhythm of throwing the shuttle, lifting and lowering the heddle, beating the yarn in place over and over is so zen.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Roswell Fibercraft Guild

A local weaver, Zelma Wilcox, has kept the Roswell Fibercraft Guild alive, despite a few lean years. Joining with Zelma we have focused on rebuilding the guild this year.

Margaret Barry
in her fiber creations
Twenty attended the March meeting where Margaret Barry from Carlsbad, New Mexico was our featured presenter. Margaret is an amazing fiber artist with knowledge of every aspect of yarn and fiber from plants or animals, including the processing or manufacturing. She's a walking textbook of fiber knowledge.  
We were given an opportunity to experience first-hand how different fibers look and feel in their raw form from dog to silk. She demonstrated spinning and we played with carding wool and learned how to test yarn by burning it.  
This spring in Roswell our guild is growing and fiber arts interest is blooming.