Friday, May 31, 2019

Community Spirit and Garage Sales

cheer leader 
Our members live in a collection of small to medium sized communities that populate the mid section of Vancouver Island.  These communities have distinct personalities which they celebrate at community events.  Family Day in Qualicum Beach is one of those events.  It brings together a mix of community groups from tap dancers to weavers and spinners.  Rain or shine our guild has taken part in Family Day for many years.  This year it was sunny.  Our cheer leader is showing her appreciation.

 We love this event and the enthusiastic group of families that always show up.  It is delightful to watch the children most of whom are shy at first and a bit reluctant to try anything.  With a bit of encouragement they soon become fascinated with the process of making yarn or cloth.

our booth is always a busy place
Events like this are a great way to help keep the crafts alive, to build an appreciation of the "made by hand" label and to introduce people to a satisfying past time.


Our next "public" event is a new for us but not for most people.  We are having a garage/yard sale!  A gigantic sale too big to fit in the garage alone.  This is a fund raiser to help finance our educational programs and resource centre.    Members have been purging their homes for the last month and as a result we will have truck loads of stuff to sell and I am not kidding.  There will be collectables, house hold and garden items, tools, furniture, children's items and so much more.

You can help us to simplify our lives while recycling for the good of the planet and even find yourself a bargain by coming.  That gives you three reasons to be there, so copy the following information.

Date:  Saturday, June 22nd
Time:  8:00 am to 1:00 pm
Location:  238 4th Avenue West, (corner of Jones & 4th Avenue) in Qualicum Beach

Friday, May 3, 2019

Sharing the Learning

dye workshop sample
Perhaps the most important benefit of belonging to an arts guild is the opportunity to learn from others and grow your own skills.  Sharing knowledge, learning and building confidence are important activities for the Qualicum Weavers and Spinners Guild.  We have a very active teaching program and most of the teachers are guild members who are generous with their time and talents.
Still, sometimes to expand into new areas or explore in greater depth we need to go beyond the guild's resources and tap into the greater arts community.
It can be difficult and expensive to bring in experienced teachers and even more difficult for our members to travel great distances to workshops.  This is where the concept of "sharing the learning" can help.

This year our guild was pleased to be the recipient of grant funds from the Association of North West Weaving Guild (ANWG).  The funds were used to give financial assistance to members so that they could attend workshops and classes that are not available locally.  In return, the workshop attendees share what they have learned through presentations and workshops.  Three grants were awarded for, basketry, Saori weaving and textile dyeing workshops.

At our April general meeting we were treated to a presentation on Saori weaving.

Saori loom

The Saori loom has a simplified warping process and with just two harnesses and two treadles it is idea for playing with plain weave.  If a pre-made warp is purchased then the time and effort involved in set up is minimize.  The wheel attached to the castle is a bobbin winder.

saori woven strip
The weaving process is more free form and encourages experimenting with materials and hand manipulation including a form of clasp weave.  The whole process reduces the emphasis on straight edges or perfect rhythm allowing the weaver to take a spiritual journey without guilt feelings.

meandering lines

warp additions

Our next general meeting will be Monday, May 27.  Until then we are busy setting up some new studio projects and getting organized for our first outdoor event of the season.  Members are also working on pieces for the ANWG conference that takes place in Prince George in June.

Finally, look for our booth at the Qualicum Beach Family Day Event on Sunday May 26th.  Our booth is very popular with young would-be weavers and spinners.  Stop by and say hello!