Scandinavian Weavers Study Group February Meeting

The Scandinavian Weavers Study Group met on February 19, 2012.

Linda Simpson was a first-time attendee, with a charming story of her desire to weave.  Her grandmother, who lived with Linda’s family when Linda was a child, was a weaver.  She died when Linda was four, and the loom was packed up and stored in various locations for years.

When Linda moved to Roberts, Wisconsin, a few years ago, she met Patty Kuebker-Johnson and her dream of setting up the old loom was revived. She rented space at Color Crossing, ensuring a lot of expert help during the process of bringing the old loom back to life.The loom pieces were very dirty, and charring indicated they may have narrowly escaped going up in flames at some point during storage. Repairs were needed. The ratchet system was a bit warped, and the pieces where the beater bar hung were worn through.  Linda has completed her first weaving, a runner woven from old rags from her grandmother.  She is moving on to a new project, paraments made in huck lace technique with Harrisville wool.

Even though she was only four when her grandmother died, Linda still remembers sitting under the loom. It seemed magical.  Judy Larson, who along with Patty helped set up the old loom, noted, “Now we’ve all sat under the loom, but sometimes with a beer.”

Mary Litsheim’s PhD dissertation has been published on the University of Minnesota website. She has submitted some portions of the thesis to Vesterheim for possible publication in the magazine; others may be published in the Textile Newsletter or the rosemaler’s newsletter.  She presented a paper based on her thesis at the SASS (Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study) conference in Chicago in 2011.  She said the attendees were amazingly interested in the smallest nuances of information about Scandinavia.  They asked many questions.

At home on her Hagen loom Mary has been struggling with a tapestry, finally realizing, “I don’t like tapestry!”  Instead she will continue on that warp with Vestfold technique in a small, fine format.

Judy Larson weaves rugs on 8 foot cranbrook loom.  The rug she brought, made from fabric strip from jeans, wasn’t so wide but it was ten feet long! At 12epi with seine twine warp, it should be a long-lasting rug.

She made a smaller rug of men’s ties in a three-shuttle technique, part of the Color Crossing Tie Challenge.

We discussed upcoming issues of the Norwegian Textile Letter and solicited articles.  For anyone who does not subscribe to this fabulous publication that is SO REASONABLY PRICED, send $15.00 for a one-year subscription to Mary Lonning Skoy, Editor, 7200 York Ave. S #120, Edina, MN   55435.  Email: maryskoy@hotmail.com

Nancy Ellison bought a book, Old Swedish Weavings from North to South from the Vesterheim bookshop.  Here’s a fun YouTube preview of that book.

Melba Granlund is traveling to Becky’s Väv Stuga for a beginning Swedish weaving course; Patty Kuebker-Johnson is taking Becky’s drawloom class in May.  Becky’s Vavstuga website has a section with many fun and instructive videos; see her mini movies page. http://www.vavstuga.com/minimovies/

Nancy Eillison is continuing her exploration of the cradle loom, and in particular, making slit tapestry on the cradle loom.  If anyone finds information on similar looms in Norway, she would be very interested to hear about it.

Patty Kuebker-Johnson is very enthusiastic about using the half-heddle system for accomplishing patterning that does not run all the way across the warp.  She is working on a project for a study group show at the Phipps Center for the Arts.  As she put it, she is making slow weaving even slower. She used her half-heddle set-up to make the pieces with dots shown here.  The new pieces will be the same dots, but dots falling apart, complete and incomplete dots. Here are the first full-dot experiment pieces.

About Robbie LaFleur
Weaving in Minnesota, when I can!

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