Monday, September 5, 2011

Breaking News!!!


The space looks so big! But already it is getting filled with looms.

We are now into September and I have taken the day off to make blueberry jam, bread and do a much needed clean up at home - well so far the jam and bread are done and a quick sweep started, but I got sidetracked sorting out some wool and things for the studio - I miss the studio!
 And the breaking news??
Leola's Studio has expanded again! There are now three studios of which all are full and busy. The original studio I partially use for my younger students and the overflow for The Loom with spinning and weaving supplies, the second for classroom with a dye kitchen out back, and the third for classroom and a Gallery - where handmade beautiful things can be purchased. Please come and have a look - we are going to have an official opening soon. Join us and create on the community looms - rag rugs, hand towels, blankets and our new warp will be for comfort shawls or prayer shawls for those in need of a special 'wrap me up and soothe me' shawl. We are hoping to make it a true community loom, we provide the warp and you provide the weft. A donation will be accepted and then in turn a donation will be made to hospice or other charity, as well as to purchase more yarn if needed. Please take part, as there are a lot of people that require comfort. Meanwhile the rag rug community looms are in high demand and I need to warp another rag rug warp for three friends coming to weave - we have named them the girlfriend looms. It is a wonderful way to experience a working studio - no, you do not have to have prior weaving experience.
A rag rug in progress

Debbie at work......the room now has about 6 looms and the front space is
for our retail

A beautiful blanket woven in the new
expanded studio by Debbie who will be assisting us

Slocan Lake
I think the last time I posted was just I before I left for the Kootenays where I had a very restful time, sleeping, swimming and reading nestled on my beach surrounded by my mountains and quiet. The highlight of my visit was a wonderful day with my weaving teacher Wanya Twan. I drove over to Kaslo and spent the day talking non-stop reflecting on just about everything. It was inspiring - one of the reasons I am doing what I am doing is because of Wanya. Her teaching style is unique and beautifully traditional. Wanya has an aura about her that is healing as well as instructive. She is from Sweden and learned at the H.V. school and Lila Lundall was her teacher. I was fortunate to study with Lila as well in Stockholm. I had the opportunity to apprentice with Wanya, so I feel very fortunate to have had her as my foundation teacher. Cherryville was a place of such energy and creativity.
 The day was so rich and full, that it is hard to explain. I can only say that it strengthened me in my focus and my goal to teach and share as much as I can with what I love best.
Lunch on the porch.....

I took pictures of weaving and other textiles and Wanya gave me this amazing felted piece that blows everyones minds....
Yes, it is wool, wet felted - it is hung now in the studio. Come and see it in person!

Kaslo is a lovely little town on Kootenay Lake, just 30 minutes from New Denver on a delightful road, saw a couple of bear and missed a moose by 5 minutes acccording to some tourists.
 A lot of the  houses are Victorian in Kaslo and Wanya was intrigued and delighted by some of the old wallpaper in her house - made of linen!

Yes, woven with rags.....
I have many more pictures and will post more later. One of my favourite pieces - a tapestry woven with rags that Wanya purchased in Sweden. I took tapestry weaving with Jane Kidd in 1972 (yes I know that is a long long time ago!) and I didn't have any money for supplies, so I decided I would just weave with rags. I have always been rather partial to rags and now I want to weave tapestry with rags - just something to do!

Dolls made by 7 and 8 year olds - aren't they delightful?

August was incredibly busy in the studio - I didn't take but two days off in three weeks. It was exhilarating and it was hard to stop. I had lots of kids for 'textile camp' and it was really fun.

Sophie's Story Pillow
a special pocket in the back for
a bedtime storybook

My grandson learning to weave!

Hailey's blanket with the source of inspiration,
The Crane's Wife. This blanket won first at the Cobble Hill Fair!
The kids were all felting as well, and a couple of the students are now making coffee cozies to sell in the Gallery. Another student also won a first at the fair for her needle felting, but I didn't take a picture yet - she is also selling it because she is saving for a sewing machine - I guess my teaching extends to entrepreneurship too!
Speaking of felting, here I am fulling with my feet. Thought I would try it and it worked to a certain extent! And it was fun.

And right next to my dye kitchen is a Cowichan carver currently working on a totem. The studio does not lack for creative energy. It is truly a small community of creative folk.

Herb Rice, Cowichan carver

The fibre fairs are just getting better and better. Fibrations, a new fleece and fibre show held in the St. Ann's Academy Orchard in Victoria, was fabulous. We had so much fun and we worked hard. The 'Shawnigan Girls', Devon, Sandy and myself were next to each other and we didn't stop the whole day. It was great and I am still getting calls from people that want to take classes. What a great great day. And so I think I will end. I have a busy day tomorrow in, where else? The Studio!