Friday, May 25, 2012

Washington Folk Festival- June 2&3

The Washington Folk Festival at Glen Echo Park is one of the best shows we attend all year. It offers something for everyone including dancing, musical programs and a great craft show. For the past 4 years we have been part of the craft show and we have enjoyed the experience every time.

This is the show to attend. The vendors are the most unique you will find in the DC area, the show offers both outdoor and indoor venues. If it's hot, there's the Spanish Ballroom to cool down in while you watch great dancers perform. If the weather is cool, there are several tents to sit in and enjoy a wide variety of music.  Read more about the WFF 2012 here.

Bring the kids!  The WFF is a great place for families. Children (and adults) enjoy the hand painted horses on the infamous antique Carousel that is at the heart of Glen Echo Park.  The WFF includes storytellers, dancers, crafter (come visit us in the Bumper Car Pavilion), and performers roaming the park with impromptu shows.

Lotsaknots (our retail name) will be selling hand knit, sewn and woven items.  Here are a few examples:

Friday, May 11, 2012

Why weave?

I started weaving in 2005. Actually, my first encounter with a floor loom was in 1973 when I attempted to weave on a Glimakra Standard that was the only piece of furniture in my friend's New York City townhouse living room.  My only recollection was how enormous it was and how awesome it felt to toss the shuttle across the warp and catch it on the other side.  I now own that same loom and still enjoy tossing the shuttle across 45" of warp and catching as it emerges on the other side.

Laverne & me
Although weaving is now a permanent part of my life, I still wonder why.  The answer is all around me. So many wonderful things have happened to me because I took up weaving.  Most center on the people I have met through weaving. We speak the same language and never have to answer the question at the title of this post.

When I began to call myself a hand weaver, I looked around for others who were obsessed with this craft and found the Yahoo groups.  I soon became frustrated being unable to post pictures and add files easily to the posts I wrote on the various weaving boards.  It was fun connecting with other weavers and reading about their struggles and successes and I wanted to see their woven items.  I do believe a picture is worth a thousand words.  I wrote to Syne Mitchell, former publisher of Weavezine, and asked if she was interested in starting a social network, like Facebook, specifically for hand weavers. She declined due to the time constraints of her writing and referred me to Tien Chiu. And that was where Weavolution began.  Soon, Alison G. came on board to help manage the financial part and the three of us launched Weavolution a year later. A year after that, we launched a very new and improved Weavolution which still thrives under the new ownership of Erica and Oli, two American ex-pats living in the UK.
The founders of
Claudia, Laverne & Janet at MSWF
It doesn't end there. I met so many wonderful people on and around Weavolution. I attended more fiber shows such as Maryland Sheep and Wool (MSWF), Rhinebeck, Shenedoah Fiberfest, etc. I spent time with store owners, vendors, distributors, wholesalers, yarn reps and more. They became my peer group and, as Weavolution grew and improved, my weaving (and my health) suffered. In September 2011, Erica and Oli bought Weavolution and Alison and I walked away from the day-to-day and became regular citizens and advisors to Weavo.

I now spend most of my time weaving, spinning, knitting and lurking on Weavolution, Facebook, LinkedIn, Yahoo groups and other social networks.  I volunteer for the Spinning and Weaving group that is part of TNNA.  I enjoy spending time in my studio on a broad variety of projects.

Claudia warping a  Schacht Flip
Introducing people to these time honored crafts of knitting, weaving, spinning and crochet is very humbling to me.  Think about if for a moment; every piece of fabric we encounter is either woven or knit.  Everything!!  So when I ask why weave?  It's quite simple, we weave because we can.