Sunday, February 28, 2010

Alice Schlein Visits sutherland

Our floor has never looked better than when Alice Schlein spread her jacquard triptych on the floor for better viewing by the 042group of 15 weavers, friends and spouses who gathered at sutherland to hear about her latest book.

The studio was buzzing with decades of combined experience represented by the people who gathered there last Friday morning. We saw many other samples of Alice’s beautiful jacquard and dobby weaving and learned that this self-taught weaver decided to write her new book, The Liftplan Connection: Designing for Dobby Looms with Photoshop & Photoshop Elements, because so many dobby weavers were interested in the design techniques described in The Woven Pixel, which she co-authored with Bhakti Ziek. Several guests of this special Web Chats AT sutherland helped lighten Alice’s load, buying up copies of The Liftplan Connection, The Woven Pixel and even Alice’s very last personal copy of Network Drafting. Alice graciously autographed every one.

The event also brought together friends, former teachers and students, and even two of the newest weavers enrolled in Weaving I at sutherland. Barb and I were so thrilled with how everything worked out that we will try to plan more visits by notable weavers who live near Asheville or may be traveling through Western North Carolina. If you have a suggestion for a special Web Chats guests, just let us know!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

New Pups on the Block

When Karen and I first started talking about opening a shop together last summer, we talked about looms, classes, and yarns. we would each go back home and think and email and Google, and then talk some more about all the ideas swirling around on our heads. Karen even started keeping a notepad in her bathroom because she said all her great ideas popped into her head while washing her hair!
Well, nowhere in all the planning and talking did we ever think we might need more than the four Schacht Baby Wolfs we either had already or would soon purchase second-hand. I don't know about Karen, but I felt like we would be lucky if we filled up one class. Who knew her class list would be so popular we would end up purchasing three new Schacht Wolf Pup to keep up with the class demand? I hope this is not a fluke and the interest will continue. Weaving is such a lost art and the only way to preserve it is to continue educating. In one of Karen's classes she has a student in her early twenties. Needless to say we are thrilled.
And in all this excitement we are pleased to announce sutherland is now an authorized dealer for things Schacht!
Karen worked really hard to get these Pups all put together in time for her class this past Monday. The photo shows her success.
Tomorrow will mark another milestone for sutherland--our first book signing. Alice Schlein, an authority on sophisticated pattern design for multi-shaft and computerizes dobby looms will be joining us from 10 a.m. to Noon. We will have an informal discussion while Alice sells and autograph copies of her latest book, The Liftplan Connection: Designing for Dobby Looms with

Photoshop® and Photoshop Elements®.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Same But Different

With my weaving blip behind me as told in my last blog note, I have gotten back into the 'theme' scarf idea. Not really sure where this plan was taking me, I just started to weave. The first scarf in this series was the one I wove for my friend, Walker and I called it "Sixty Years of Walker". (Ha Ha--it was a birthday gift. ) As I mentioned, I loved the pattern and wanted the series to use this as the basis of the theme.
Next I decided to use a space-dyed alpaca and tencel as the weft with a Gemstone silk from Halcyon in a sky blue color.
Then today I wove like a madwoman--i had my warp chain ready to go as I had done that last night while watching the Olympics. I was using a the same tencel in the warp and weft to see what effect this had on the pattern. As I started I quickly saw the pattern was not nearly as noticeable using this dyed yarn, but i love the tweed-like look it has while still on the loom. I have wet finished the cloth and it is drying. One of my favorite times is when I awake the morning after I have wet finished a piece to see what it looks like, what the hand is like, and finally pressing it to see the finished result. Tomorrow will be one of those lovely mornings.
I am not through with this series and will continue with several more pieces to see how this pattern works with different yarns. As I weave them I will post photos along with my thoughts on how they look.
Let me know what you think as well.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Waiting for the loom truck

…warps in hand! The second session of Weaving I began at sutherland today with three new students and one from the Sunday class who decided Mondays work better for her. Even though delivery of the three new Wolf Pups we ordered from Schacht Spindle Co. got delayed by snow from Ontario to Indiana to Colorado and finally to Asheville, NC, we started our first class focusing on planning, estimating warp and weft needs, drafting and winding our warps.

I had promised our Schacht rep my students and I wo010uld be eagerly awaiting the arrival of the delivery truck, warps 009in hand. She said, “I’d love to see that.” So I snapped these pictures today of the students and their warp chains. The looms are expected Wednesday or Thursday, so the students will begin warping next week.

This also means sutherland Handweaving is now a Schacht dealer. While our space does not permit us to carry a lot of inventory, we will be able to order looms and equipment for students or anyone wanting to order from Schacht. 

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Our Storefront Has a Storefront

Our signs have arrived, so we’ve loaded our front door with information to help our CURVE studios & garden visitors understa015nd all that goes on in here and hopefully entice them in. I snapped this picture yesterday afternoon during the 3 hours of sunshine we got between winter storms.

Last night we had a lovely Web Chat AT sutherland in the studio with a couple of our friendly area weavers, learning more about their work, looking at wonderful show & tell pieces and hearing more about the wonderful rich history of weaving in Western North Carolina and Upstate South Carolina.

We already are taking reservations for our very special Web Chat AT sutherland Feb. 26, from 10 am-noon, featuring a book sale and signing with network drafting guru  Alice Schlein. Alice’s newest book is called The Liftplan Connection: Designing for Dobby Looms With Photoshop® and Photoshop. We’re very excited to have her discussing her latest research and seeing some samples of the work. We’re expecting a big turnout, so please register in advance, as we may need to borrow some floor space from our studio neighbor. Just email us at  There is no charge to attend the web chat, but Alice will be selling copies of her books.