"}
Visual

Fiber Frenzy

Getting wowed by weavers

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

If you happen to be on the Western Washington University campus Mon., June 17, don’t be surprised if the garbage can you just threw your used coffee cup into is suddenly the most attractive thing around.

In anticipation of the NW Weavers Conference, which will take place June 17-23 throughout WWU, members of the Seattle Weavers’ Guild will spend part of Monday “yarn storming” various educational edifices with woven, knitted and crocheted pieces that will embellish everything from the aforementioned refuse receptacles to handrails, light poles, columns and much more.

Although the 500-plus fiber enthusiasts who will be attending the conference—and yarn-bombing the school—have filled the 75 workshops, seminars and one-day classes to capacity (and did so in within 45 minutes after registration opened in January) those who are interested in fiber arts—whether they’re participating in the creative practice or purchasing the works of those who do—will have plenty of opportunities to get involved.

For example, a Marketplace Mall featuring supplies, demos and finished pieces by more than 30 merchants from around the United States and beyond will be open at various times June 20-22. Additionally, five textile-related exhibits will be open to the public and, come Sat., June 22, a free “Felting Frenzy” will focus on teaching participants how to take un-spun fibers and turn them into their own hand-felted item, which they can take with them when they go.

“In the Marketplace Mall, there will be merchants from near and far—from Bellingham and the surrounding area to Texas, Canada, California, Mexico, Guatemala, the Hill tribes of Laos, and more,” says organizer Joyce Hunsaker. “If you are a weaver, spinner, dyer or garment maker, you will find looms, tools, yarns and accessories for your work. If you are not a fiber artist yet, but appreciate what others have created, you will find rugs, scarves, baskets, bags, and much more, from local artists as well as women’s cooperatives in Mexico and Guatemala. Come look, come touch, come be inspired.”

For those who aren’t quite sure what fiber arts actually are, registration chairperson Sue Willingham has an apt description. “To me,” she says, “a person who designs and creates items made of fiber or using fiber techniques, such as weaving, twining, braiding, sewing and many others, is an artist, whether or not she or he sells that work.”

Judging by how quickly the conference filled up, and how many people are taking part, those putting on the event can confidently say getting involved in weaving and fiber arts isn’t an anachronistic practice, but a vibrant art form that continues to reinvent itself.

And, although the conferences only take place once every two years, members of the regional roundup say it takes that long to organize instructors, volunteers, locales and more.

Once everything’s in place, however, most guild members get down to the task at hand—learning more about their art form, and networking with other members.

“One of the most exciting events is the Fashion Show Exhibit,” exhibits chairperson Cyndi White says. “Most weavers are women, and we love to see what innovative methods have been used to create a woven garment. The conference also creates a togetherness among weavers, as we all love to touch, analyze and share fibers.”

SVCR-0604_GritsGlamour_770x150-CW
More Visual...
Voyager
The art of transition

“Thus did Odin establish that all dead men should be burned, and their belongings laid with them upon the pile, and the ashes be cast into the sea…“ recounts the saga of the Norse Vikings.

So perhaps it was no surprise when Steve Jensen’s best friend, dying of AIDS, asked him to…

more »
A Family Affair
Welcome to Tillie Lace Gallery

The first time painter Cooper Lanza and her daughter Morgan entered 1415 13th Street, it was for an opening reception at the former Lucia Douglas Gallery.

Lanza says she was struck by the high ceilings, clean industrial lines and the way the light filtered through the windows at the…

more »
A Child's Touch
Arts in action at Lowell Elementary

With remodels and an expansion, so much at Bellingham’s Lowell Elementary School is shiny and new. That’s nice and all, but the school still needed a child’s touch.

With contributions from all 285 students, the walls and schoolyard at Lowell now have some much-needed color. Three…

more »
Events
Today
Bard on the Beach

12:00pm|Vanier Park

Boating Center Open

12:00pm|Community Boating Center

Hiking Basics

6:00pm|REI

Final History Sunset Cruise

6:00pm|Bellingham Cruise Terminal

All-Paces Run

6:00pm|Fairhaven Runners

Final BIFT

6:30pm|Boundary Bay Brewery

Amnesty International Meeting

7:00pm|Community Food Co-op

Skagit Folk Dancers

7:00pm|Bayview Civic Hall

Swinomish 2016 Village Books
Tomorrow
Boating Center Open

12:00pm|Community Boating Center

Bard on the Beach

12:00pm|Vanier Park

Bellingham City Club Meeting

11:30am|Northwood Hall

Wednesday Market

12:00pm|Fairhaven Village Green

Lynden Book Club

12:30pm|Lynden Library

Sedro-Woolley Farmers Market

3:00pm|Hammer Heritage Square

Group Run

6:00pm|Skagit Running Company

Group Run

6:00pm|Skagit Running Company

Brewers Cruise

6:30pm|Bellingham Cruise Terminal

The Gun Show

8:00pm|Boundary Bay Brewery

Swinomish 2016 Artifacts Wine Bar
Thursday
Skagit tours

10:00am|Highway 20

Bard on the Beach

12:00pm|Vanier Park

Boating Center Open

12:00pm|Community Boating Center

Bow Little Market

1:00pm|Belfast Feed Store

A gold medal standard

4:00pm

After-Hours Market

4:00pm|Depot Market Square

Eat Local Month

4:00pm|Bellingham and Whatcom County

First Thursday Art Walk

5:00pm|Downtown Mount Vernon

Riverwalk Summer Concert Series

5:00pm|Skagit Riverwalk Park

Memory to Memoir

5:30pm|Village Books

Fiesta 4 Cuba

8:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead

8:00pm|Cirque Lab

see our complete calendar »

Bellingham Farmer’s Market Village Books Northwood Steak and Crab Swinomish 2016 Zoots Side Bar Andrew Subin Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1 Artifacts Wine Bar