August 28th is the newsletter deadline

Please send any articles, quotes, photographs, or reveries to Nancy.

Think about sharing your weaving journeys, conundrums, resources, research, workshops and insights with our members.

Then, of course, write them up and send them.  Think of it as a way to grab a few moments away from your summer rejuvenation schedule.

Praxis Fiber Workshop opening day report

For the Praxis Fiber Workshop Open House in early June of 2015, Darcy and I went together. The youth and enthusiasm of their artistic souls is revitalizing an area once abandoned and mourned as dead. We shared the mature feeling that it is always better to explore new vistas and questionable neighborhoods with a buddy. It turned out that the only thing we had to fear were the road craters that created challenging conditions between here and there. We parked on the street with no troubles.

There was a little fanfare. A few bright balloons marked the location, and live music spilled out the front door. We walked past people scattered on the sidewalk and the front stoop carefully unwrapping indigo tie dye t-shirts. Just inside the front window, a man played guitar on the left side of the stage while a woman played a 4-harness jack loom to the right.

The entry quickly opened into a comfortable gallery space with a TAA show presenting a wide range of fiber talents. I made sure to absorb and enjoy the offerings of so talented a group, but people I recognized kept assuring me that I really had to go out back. I was determined to explore in a leisurely and logical fashion, but I promised them that I would get there.

I passed through the door into the middle space. To the left was a shiny spacious dye zone with everything one could covet in equipment. A crowd gathered in an orderly fashion to wait or work on their own free artisan t-shirt created from their own creative hands.

The dye demo of tie-dye indigo produced crowd fulls of the same color shirts; all unique and individual in their design.

Indigo tie-dye T-shirt made at Praxis Fiber Workshop grand opening

Indigo tie-dye T-shirt made at Praxis Fiber Workshop grand opening

Not being much of a t-shirt person, my gaze was drawn right and captured by a very large room filled with mostly large looms. Countermarches formerly used at CIA line up like an army waiting to ride into the next wave of discovery.

Looms at the Praxis Fiber Workshop

Looms at the Praxis Fiber Workshop

A small zone of jack looms is tucked in toward the back. There are large empty rooms on the far side suitable and available for private studio rental.

Panoramic view of empty studio room at Praxis Fiber Workshop

Panoramic view of empty studio room at Praxis Fiber Workshop

The emptiness and openness quickly became foreign and uncomfortable, so I moved back to the main area and rejoiced in the joy of seeing so many looms in one place without being at my own home.

I passed equipment storage and a cozy library nook before heading out back as suggested. They had opened the overhead door into the back lot to allow easy access to the large felted creation growing over a large blue tarp spread out over the ground. It was pure art in both its form and function.

Reading nook at Praxis Fiber Workshop

Reading nook at Praxis Fiber Workshop

The process started with a table piled high with many colors of wool roving. Some attempt had been made to separate and sort the colors, but the choices were numerous enough to force some overlap in the piles.

Work and storage space at Praxis Fiber Workshop

Work and storage space at Praxis Fiber Workshop

A bright blue caught my eye. I pulled off a healthy hand full from the sliver and started to stretch and thin it. When I was satisfied with its diaphanous nature, I slipped off my shoes, choose a spot and placed my bit of blue. I added a squirt of soap and started to introduce the sudsy fibers into the work with my bare feet. Many others were dancing over the wet and wooly bits to coerce it all into one cohesive cloth. I was happy to add my bit of color to their opening endeavor. I left with a smile and exceptionally clean toes.

Classes are available to satisfy all the stages of a fiber-focused education. Those big open rooms are available for private rental, as is the dye zone. The staff is young, enthusiastic, and obviously competent. They are friendly, warm, welcoming, and well trained.

We will arrange a tour for our group, but it is located close by and worth a visit anytime. With the range of classes they are offering, you might not want to wait. Check out their website here.

Victoria at Praxis Fiber Workshop

Victoria at Praxis Fiber Workshop

Annual Dye Day this Friday, June 26th

The Cuyahoga Spinners Guild’s Annual Dye Day and (not always annual) sale is happening this Friday, June 26th, starting at 9:00 am, rain or shine, at Jean’s home, <a href=””>2980 Washington Blvd., Cleveland Heights, OH</a>.

We will have a Schact inkle loom and book, a Schact warping board, and a Leclerc 4-harness folding table loom with a  15-inch weaving width, all in excellent condition for sale, as well as past issues of weaving, spinning, and knitting magazines, including <em>Spin-Off</em>, <em>Handwoven</em>, <em>Shuttle, Spindle &amp; Dyepot</em>. Jean will introduce us to a new marbling technique as well.

Pot luck lunch, so bring a dish to share. Bring your fiber yarn, or fabric prepped and ready to dye, wear your work clothes (something you don’t mind getting dye on), and come have some colorful fun with us!

Annual business meeting this Thursday, May 21st

Join us for our annual business meeting and view our show at Beachwood Library, 25501 Shaker Blvd., Beachwood, OH 44122.

The nomination committee has prepared a slate of  officers for election.

President                   Sarah Berg

Treasurer                   Jean Jackson

Secretary                    Nancy Allman

Program 2016-17      Victoria Johnson-Parratt

Come at 11:30 am to enjoy a brown bag lunch, view the show, followed by the 12:30 pm meeting and election.

French fashion presentation at Heights Library

Carole Wallencheck will be presenting French Fashion: Finery, Frippery, and Frocks at the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library, Lee Road branch, 2345 Lee Road, Cleveland Heights, OH, Monday, May 18th, at 7:00 pm.

France’s dominance as an arbiter of good taste as well as a purveyor of extravagant adornment dates back to the reign of The Sun King, Louis XIV, and is rooted in the Middle Ages. Through an image-packed presentation, we’ll track the rise of Paris as a world-renowned fashion center, examining the public faces of the high-profile designers and great couture houses, as well as the little-known techniques of the backroom workshops. Part of the Springtime in Paris series.

The program is free and open to the public, and no registration is required.

Beginning weaving at Peninsula Arts Academy

Come and learn how to calculate your warp, dress the loom, and weave a sampler, using many different types of 4-harness weaves. From there, the sky is the limit! For more information, or to register, contact Carol at 330-657-2681 or through her web site.
When: Saturdays, 2 pm
Fee: $30 per week, or $28 for PAA members, plus a materials fee of $15. Select any 6 weeks to complete your sampler. Sign up for all 6 weeks now for $175 or $160 for members plus the $15.

Local estate sale to include fiber items

Starting tomorrow, April 23rd and continuing until April 26th, an estate sale in Burton will include fiber items. From the listing:

Our client is a well known fiber artist, and former owner of an alpaca farm. We will have fiber, wools, threads, accessories, notions and a host of other items including floor loom and many other important supplies. ORCO floor Loom, Model 74, 4-harness, 6-treadle.

Keepers of the Loom documentary at CSU

The Keepers of the Loom documentary film will be presented at Cleveland State University Main Classroom Auditorium, 1899 East 22nd Street, Cleveland, OH on Monday, April 27th, at 6:00 pm. This film is the story of generations of Estonian women who used the skills they depended on for their own survival to preserve the beauty and resilience of an entire people.

Film makers Reet and Tom Mae will be present for Q&A. Donations will be accepted at the door to cover their travel expenses from Toronto.  Local Cleveland area Estonians will provide some pastries for the meet-and-greet with the film makers following the screening. Please contact Toomas Tubalkain for additional information or call 216-875-9734 to register for this free event. Watch the trailer below:

April meeting and workshop

This Thursday, April 23rd, at our April meeting, Barb Wainright from Rochester, NY, will present a lecture on “Let’s Not Call It Honeycomb” at the usual time – 11:30 am for lunch with a short business meeting at noon, lecture afterwards, and done by 2 pm.

If you are interested in joining the workshop and your schedule has freed up at the last minute there is still room to join us. This is a stash friendly workshop so materials will be inexpensive and easy to find and/or swap amongst ourselves.

Our workshop will start immediately after the Guild meeting, and we are trying a schedule that is a little different to try and accommodate people’s work schedules:

Thursday, April 23rd: from end of Guild meeting until around 5:00 pm-ish then going to supper (optional)
Friday, April 24th: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm and
Saturday, April 25th: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Barb’s description of the workshop:
Given the right sett and materials honeycomb can produce tailored, deeply textured fabrics suited to many purposes, even clothing. Fabrics of surprising complexity are possible on only four shafts. Using woven examples we will examine the effects of threading, yarn, sett, and beat in developing texture. We will also consider use of color with this structure. Like all deflected-weft weaves, honeycomb needs wet-finishing to blossom but results can be hard to predict. The samples you create will help you plan future projects with confidence.

More information on Barb’s work can be seen in Handwoven, September-October 2007, page 52 and Interweave Press e-book, Best of Handwoven: Honeycomb Technique Series, which includes her Honeycomb laptop case project. We also have materials in our library about the weaves Barb will be teaching.

We are also trying something new with a limited round robin where each weaver creates samples for herself on only four looms with representative threadings of the entire workshop.

Cost will be $50 per person ($60 for non-CWG members).

If you want to join the workshop, please contact Lynne Killgore.

Bus trip to Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival

Join Stacey Allen of Cleveland Metroparks on an adventure to the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival. We will spend all day Saturday shopping at the festival for fiber, yarn, equipment, patterns, ideas and more.

The Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival includes hundreds of vendors from all over the country that include everything that a fiberholic could ever need, plus 5 hours each way of hands-free driving allowing plenty of time for UFOs or start new projects on the way home!

Bus ride is $85 per person, and space is limited. Registration is required. Call 216-206-1000 to reserve your spot.

We will leave Fairview Park at 10 am on Friday, May 1st, 2015, and return approximately 10:30 pm on Saturday, May 2nd, 2015. Cars can be left at the Ranger headquarters overnight. Friday evening we will have dinner at May’s Seafood Restaurant (not included).

Hotel will be the Comfort Inn, Red Horse of Fredrick, MD (not included). Price is $90 per room (1-4 people). Bus will drop us off at the opening of the festival on Saturday and will depart from the festival at 5 pm.