Vesterheim Classes 2019–A Fabulous Line-up

I have to admit, it’s satisfying and fun when a new class catalog comes out, and I find my classes listed. I love teaching the billedvev (Norwegian tapestry) class at the Vesterheim Norwegian American Museum, and my session from September 12-15, 2019, is listed in the new print and online catalogs.

But when I opened the print catalog, I was amazed to see the number of Norwegian textile classes offered at Vesterheim this year!  Four members of our Scandinavian Weavers Study Group are teaching: besides my Norwegian tapestry class, Keith Pierce is teaching band weaving; Melba Granlund is teaching warp weighted loom weaving;  and Jan Mostrom is teaching the “Art Weaves of Norway and Sweden.”

Laura Demuth from Decorah is teaching an introductory weaving course, and “Weaving a Double Weave in the Scandinavian Style.” Britt Solheim is coming from Norway to teach skinnfell printing, a class she first taught at Vesterheim in 2009.

See the list and links to sign up here. Heads up–these are great teachers! I’ll bet that many of these will fill early.

Band Weaving in the Galleri

There is still time to register for the second “class in the Galleri” event connected with the Norway House exhibit, “Traditional Norwegian Weaving American Reboot.” Last week, students enjoyed Melba Granlund’s “Viking Knit Bracelet” class in the light and textile filled Norway House Galleri.



On August 14 and 21 the Galleri will be filled with band weavers. Students will learn to weave intricately patterned and colorful bands found throughout Scandinavia and the Baltic regions, and used by the Sami people as embellishments on their folk costumes.

Pick-up band weaving.jpg

It’s a rare opportunity to learn while surrounded by beautiful traditional and contemporary weavings.  Trade the sun and humidity for inspiration and weaving for a while this month. Sign up with a friend or family member!

keith-band-classSami-Style Band Weaving, Mondays, August 14 & 21: 12:00pm – 4:00pm. $72 WGM member / $96 Non-Member.  Additional details and sign-up here.

And don’t miss instructor Keith Pierce’s collection of beautiful bands on display in the show.


RED – Keith Pierce

Untitled.  12″ x 36″  Band weaving (various techniques) Pearle and unmercerized cotton.


These bands represent two traditional weaving techniques: card-weaving and backstrap weaving with hand-held rigid heddles.

The card-woven pieces were woven on a backstrap loom with the commonly-used warp-twined-cord structure.

The rest are either backstrap-woven using a pattern heddle (Spaltegrind in Norwegian), or on an inkle loom with manual pick-up.  They use supplementary warp patterns on a plain-weave, half-basket-weave background — commonly known as either “Baltic” or “European” structure.

The color red dominates traditional woven bands throughout Scandinavia and Baltic regions.  Some are thicker and stronger, and would have been used as straps and belts. Other finer pieces are examples of hairbands, shirt bands, or decorative edging on clothing.

Scandinavian Weavers Retrospective – Keith Pierce

Keith Pierce has woven bands off and on for 40 years, but has practiced it seriously only since 2011, after joining the Weavers Guild and Banditos interest group. Now retired, he formerly taught mathematics and computer science, most recently at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, and practiced software engineering at several Twin Cities businesses.

Celtic Knots  2012
Tablet woven, 3/1 broken twill.
I used 10/2 perle cotton that I dragged around the country for 40 years before resuming my tablet-weaving hobby. The band won the sweepstakes award in the category “Weaving, knotting, felting and caning” at the 2012 Minnesota State Fair.

celtic knot

Inspired by Jörmungandr  2014
Tablet woven, 3/1 broken twill. 8/2 Tencel.
I was inspired not only by the classic tale in Norse mythology but also by symbols of the ouroboros, depicting a serpent eating its own tail, or occasionally two serpents devouring each other. It won first place in the band weaving category at the 2014 Minnesota State Fair.


Estonian costume sash 2014
This belt with supplementary-warp pattern was woven on an inkle loom using warp pick-up. It is representative of belts on women’s costumes from Estonia. The pick-up technique and similar patterns can be found throughout Scandinavia as well as the Baltic states.

estonian sash