Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Fall Activities

Lace tea towel
Fall asters are in bloom in the garden marking the approach of fall.  This means busy times for our guild as we get back to regular meetings, study groups and projects not to mention thinking ahead to our annual show and sale.  So much to do so little time!

In our loft studio and resource centre we are finishing up the last of the tea towel projects and getting ready to refurbish our studio looms.  We have a Leclerc Fanny, counterbalance loom and a Gilmore jack loom that have both been in heavy use over the past few years.  The latest project was based on a pattern in Atwater-Bronson lace.  It was a challenge on the counter balance loom.

Lace tea towel
It is always interesting to see how different people interpret the same pattern.  One of the towels is a classic pastel with a subdued pattern whereas the other is bright, cheerful with a rustic look.  I wonder what the weavers' kitchens look like???

Some of our guild members managed to find time between gardening, hosting relatives and vacationing to actually get some weaving and spinning done this summer.

Terry's scarf
Linda's blanket
Two of them had also been bargain hunting,  We have some great thrift shops in our area and the craft section is always worth checking on,  Below are photos of two pieces both made from the same thrift shop yarn.  The yarn fulled beautifully and has a wonderful nap after brushing.  Which proves that sometimes you can find a treasure amongst the discards.

It also justifies numerous trips to thrift shops just in case another bargain shows up.

Then of course there are "discards" that just need a little know how and determination to turn into something beautiful.  The skeins of hand spun wool were created out of "leg hair" from a local Cotswold cross sheep.  The yarn is coarse but would make a good rug yarn.

colour and weave gamp
Other guild members have been busy studying.  We are lucky to have an experienced teacher in our guild and many members are taking advantage of the Weaver's Atelier and Linda Wilson.  The most recent workshop combined colour and weave structure showing how the former is altered by the latter.  The photos do not do justice to the cloth.
colour & weave gamp
Guild members are gearing up for our annual show and sale, Elegant Threads.  This year we will have a two day sale November 25 and 26.  We hold our sale at Rotary House in downtown Qualicum Beach.  Several other events will be going on that same weekend so a visit to Qualicum Beach would be well worth the trip.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Exposing Ourselves

Qualicum Beach Museum
August was a busy month for the Qualicum Weavers and Spinners guild.  We had fun participating in the Qualicum Beach Museum's Childrens' Day as well as exhibiting at the Lighthouse Fall Fair.

blue ribbon pears at Lighthouse Fair

Public exhibits and demonstrations are an important as well as fun activity for our group.  They give our guild exposure in the community and are a way for us to support the efforts of community groups with similar interests.  They also give us the opportunity to teach people about the basic processes involved in making yarn and cloth.  Maintaining knowledge from the past is a passion that we have in common with our local museum.

spinning lesson
The museum event includes a lot of hands on activities that let children experience how things were done in the past.  In keeping with this we set up our display to encourage little ones to try their hand at both weaving and spinning.  The photo illustrates a spinning lesson.  The parents seem to enjoy the activities as much as their children do.  The spinning lessons spanned a wide age range and attracted males as well as females as you can tell from the second photo.

adult spinning lesson
Our Lighthouse Fall Fair is an old fashion country fair that celebrates self sufficiency in many ways.  Like a lot of country fairs this one includes contests that involve old fashion home maker skills, farming activities or crafts.
Jude's start fish, part of our seaside display
There are categories for spinning, felting and weaving along with everything from wine making to grotesque vegetables.  The Qualicum Weavers and Spinners Guild sponsored a special prize for a hand woven shawl and the Weaver's Atelier sponsored a prize for the best woven item done by a novice weaver with less than 5 year's experience.

Pat's winning shawl

Benita's scarf
There were plenty of prize ribbons to be had and our guild members brought home their share, including two in the wine category, best red and best white.

Our first general meeting of the season is on Monday September 26th at the Baptist Church on Beach Avenue in Qualicum Beach.  The church is across the walkway from the old Via Train Station where we have our resource centre.  The meeting starts at 10:30 and visitors are most welcome.