This was an amazing week. As always Fiber Forum was wonderful!! Meeting old friends and making new ones is high on the priority list, next to vendors and the classes we've chosen to take.
I was privileged to be asked to pick up Daryl Lancaster at the airport in Knoxville Thursday morning. Not a problem. I live about 7 minutes north of the airport! She flew in just before noon so some of the Tuesday weavers were able to meet us for lunch.
Then it was on to Gatlinburg. Driving through the countryside was pretty but going through Pigeon Forge wasn't. Luckily for us we breezed through there. Later in the afternoon Pat picked up Irene from the airport and they had a time getting through Pigeon Forge. You just never know and have to build in extra time for travel.
Later in the afternoon as people came, this is the view I saw at the north end of the school. Waiting on benches for friends or just to chat were some of the best weavers in our area. Barbara Miller is second from the right. She is an amazing weaver. She's researched and then taught us alot about old weave structures. She is one person I consider to be a real jewel and always a person one can go to with a problem and know she's there to listen and help.
Thursday evening was Daryl Lancaster's keynote address. She gave us a very interesting look at her life. She could have talked alot longer! It's amazing how our lives sort of go in parallel lines even though we're from different parts of the country.
Then Friday classes started. I took Catherine Ellis's class on woven shibori. What a whirlwind! The first thing she said was that we should weave like crazy because we'd start dyeing on Saturday. So we did. We had guidelines to go by and we wove 12" samples, as many as we could that day. We'd been given the choice of about 5 different weave structures to thread our looms with so there were different possibilities depending on your loom. We all just wove on our own looms. None of us finished our warp but Saturday morning I came in early because I wanted to keep weaving and get it off. I'd put about 5 yards on so that I wouldn't have extra. I want to put a scarf warp on the pup now that it's empty again!
Here are some of the things I wove. I wove with 10/2 cotton in natural and had bought some 5/2 pearl as well for the draw threads. Catherine thought the 5/2 pearl was too light, too similar to the warp, so she had me use some green yarn for the rest. I was afraid that the dye would bleed from those pull threads but they didn't seem to do that at all.
We hadn't been told to bring a sewing machine with us. Arrowmont has them. Sure, they've got at least 8 of them but we weren't able to get most of them to work. This Kenmore did nicely until sometime Saturday when it just seized up! If I'd thought of it, I should have just packed my serger as well. That would have made easy work of it all! Those poor sewing machines need a bit of TLC!
After sewing and cutting our samples apart we had to gather them. Oh, as we sewed the zigzag to seal the edges, we would sew in a little square of tyvek. Using a permanent fine marker we labeled them all with our name and a number for us to remember which sample it was. Gathering the samples wasn't really that bad. We had a trick or two to protect our fingers and they gathered nicely.
I got a picture of Peggy cutting the knots out of her sample. I think this is the hardest part. You pull those threads so tight to compress the fabric and then have a time finding those threads to get your seam ripper to clip them. It's much easier to pull the fabric apart when it's dry. It's almost impossible when it's wet!
Daryl wore her new suit. This is an amazing piece. It fits her absolutely perfectly. Pictures don't do it justice. One thing that she didn't mention when she blogged about it or I missed it is the way the sleeve is sewn in. It's tucks on top, absolutely perfect little tucks. That handwoven trim looks great on it too!
Yesterday at noon we had lunch and then it was time to say goodbye again for another 2 years. Hopefully the next Fiber Forum will be at Arrowmont again because the facility is wonderful.
I brought Daryl and Irene back to the airport and then headed home to unload my car and try to digest all the things we learnt this weekend.
It's back to laundry and weaving today. I would like to get the rest of my warp off the loom today but it's not going to happen. I want to rewrite my notes and get my samples organized in a notebook so that I can keep track of what we've done. I already have a list of what I want to do..
Until next Monday..