In August, the Guild held a dyeing and spinning workshop for newer spinners to experience dyeing with different plying techniques. There were 6 participants, along with leaders Jody Atkinson and Lyndsay Topham.
Day 1 – at Jody's menagerie, we admired the lambs (now sheep), alpaca's, dogs and chickens! It was a lovely warm day, ideal for dyeing outside. We used 3 methods – stovetop in a pot, slow oven in a roaster, and steaming. Falkland (merino blend) was the wool used.
Day 2 – In the RCA. We divided the wool sliver into 7 portions. 6 x 15gms for samples, balance for a project of choice. We started spinning following the guide in 'Unbraided' - a new book in our Guild Library. The samples were: 2 ply traditional, 3 ply traditional, 2 ply fractional, 3 ply fractional, centre pull ball, and chain ply.
Fractional is splitting the sliver into 2, then spinning 1 portion in one length, the 2nd bobbin fleece is split into 4, then spun one length after the other so the colour is distributed in a different way to traditional, then plied. With 3 ply fractional, it's a 3 way split – 1 trad. Bobbin , 2nd bobbin fleece is split into 4, 3rd bobbin fleece is split into 6 -8., then plied.
Centre pull is split into 2 pieces, spun 1 piece after the other on one bobbin, wound on a ballwinder, then plied using the centre end plus the outside end together.
Day 3 – Was at the regular spinning Thursday so we could all admire the knitted samples and the different in the colour applications.
Three verbs a felter uses when describing the mechanics of hand stitching.
With the pandemic still in effect, I had been following a friend in Vernon who was taking an online workshop and posting some wonderful images on Facebook of some hand stitching she was learning. I quickly realized this was something I had to do too. Artist and Instructor Julie Booth, based in Vienna, VA, USA was my ticket. Julie is a very organized and efficient teacher who had her step by step introduction to her workshops well setup. I registered for two 3 hour Zoom lessons, the first one was titled: "Intro to Boro-Style Stitching: Running Stitch/Sashiko Style Patterns" and the second was "Hand Stitching Primer."
While the first one started in the afternoon in Virginia, I sat myself down at 10am here on the West Coast to learn from her. The second class started at 10am on the East Coast so I needed to be well-fortified with coffee at the 7am start, yikes!
Both classes proved to be a wonderful creative distraction from the daily pandemic routine of juggling two adults working from home plus the daughter who can't go see her friends like most summers. Learning these new techniques is quite inspiring and I look forward to applying my new skills in my current artistic endeavours.
With gratitude and respect for our growing fiber community here in Kelowna I want to thank the Ponderosa Spinners, Weavers, and Fibre Arts Guild for offering the scholarship and accepting my submission.