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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Jason Collingwood Workshop in Shopiere, WI - Friday

Ahhhh just a quick blog post this morning and few pics before I start my day.  Woke up at 4a.m. to a cacophony of bird calls next to the open window of the motorhome.  We are parked right next to a bunch of thick cedar trees that are LOADED with birds this morning!   It was warm last night, so we had all of the windows open.  The noise is almost deafening, I kid you not!

In this photo you can see the cedar trees and how close we are parked.   Steve and our friend Jim are unloading a 10x20 canopy they are buying from us.  I used to use it for my fiber demos, and they will now add it to theirs they already have for their rug shows.

Here is Juanita's studio, called Vavning --- located in Shopiere, WI near Beloit, just north of Rockford, Ill.  She purchased this wonderful church in a tiny village along Turtle Creek.

Once a year, for the past nine years, she has hosted a guest weaver from the UK, Jason Collingwood, to come to the studio and teach a 3 day workshop on rug weaving.

Jason is a very patient teacher... and helps out among each of us weavers personally after the lecture portion of the morning is done.  We are learning 3 End Block Weaves and ShaftSwitching this weekend.  I will post more pics of student's actual work later today.

Juanita is working on her large shaftswitching loom in the photo on the right.  On the left is my area, near the kitchen.  I am the "Kitchen Wench" taking care of the coffee, tea, snacks and cleanup.  Then on Sunday I will cook a meal for everyone before the leave.

We have 11 students this year (counting Juanita and myself)  and her looms all get moved to the sides, so the student's own table and floor looms can be situated down the center to work on.

This year we have three guys weaving, as well as women.  Did you know many years ago, weaving was a man's job, and the women were just in charge of preparing the materials by spinning the yarns and dyeing the skeins.  A man's profession was weaving, tailoring clothing and maintaining the looms.

Juanita's studio was filled once again with laughter and learning, fun and fibers! 

Last night we had a Show N Telll, but I will do a separate post on that.

Steve is being Mr. Handyman and doing some odd jobs and repairs for the studio.  Part of our way to pay back for being allowed to camp right here in the lot next to the studio.  Saves on hotel fees or camping fees, and lets us in close to the action.

It's after 7am here so I have to run in and get the coffee pot and tea pot going, make up some deviled eggs and get ready for the day.  She leaves me a key so I can open the studio to the early risers who wish to get in more weaving before the classes start at 9 o'clock.

Then it's time to weave weave weave!



  1. What a wonderful place to be, amidst all that creativity...cool to see all those looms and weavers!

  2. Know you will have a great time as you always do. Sorry about your early morning wake up call.

    Kevin and Ruth

  3. Looks like lots of fun and work! Looks too complicated for my simple mind. Have fun and learn lots and tell those birds to sleep in at least one day.

  4. Karen, thank you for all your work and good food! It was a wonderful and challenging workshop. Looking forward to more photos. Thanks again!

    Nancy Sandstrom


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