If you are interested in knowing where I will be teaching in the fairly near future, see the list below, although be sure to confirm with the event’s website: some of these are still in the planning stage, although far enough along that I know I’ll be there, even if what I’ll be teaching is not fully confirmed.
If you would like to know more about the Explore 4 events (listed by date in sequence on this page), they have their own section.
If you are interested in obtaining information on what is involved in having me teach at your event, head over here. I can only accept a few invitations each year; I do aim for geographic diversity.
February 19–22, 2018 ♦ Washington
Explore 4 Spring Fiber Retreat #1, Friday Harbor, Washington
Spin-to-weave, featuring longwools and weft-faced fabrics: four days
See Explore 4 pages. Arrive the 18th, depart the 23rd unless staying for week #2.
This is a new offering, conceived because people have trouble thinking of how to use the (glorious, exquisite, lustrous, durable) longwool fibers. They are perfect for weaving, and especially well suited to weft-faced fabrics. At a larger scale, that can mean rugs. At the smaller, exploratory scale, that can mean bags, pillows, and other useful items. We’ll play around. The basic equipment will be rigid-heddle looms, which will be available for use during the retreat. Those who would like to bring their own may do so, but it’s not required. These looms accommodate new weavers, yet the scope of what advanced weavers can do with them is wide. I learned to weave almost fifty years ago (yikes!) and have had my work featured in juried shows and exhibitions, including some one-person shows. Yet the possibilities offered by the rigid heddle’s basic two-shaft mechanism and some shiny longwool yarn can drop me down a rabbit hole of fascinating experimentation.
This retreat is being sponsored by Ashford Wheels & Looms. Thanks!
February 26–March 1, 2018 ♦ Washington
Explore 4 Spring Fiber Retreat #2, Friday Harbor, Washington
Four-by-four: Four fiber types in four days (original)
See Explore 4 pages. Arrive the 25th, depart the 2nd.
Spring retreats do not repeat fibers that have been featured in previous spring retreats. For fibers already reviewed in spring, see the fall Four-by-four.
Most of these are sheep breeds, although we sometimes branch out and explore other animals’ offerings. It’s always challenging to announce the fibers in advance. One goal is to present at least three forms of each fiber, in order to give an idea of the range of qualities within the breed or fiber type. That means I need to have in my hands those examples before I commit to including them. It often takes a year or more to collect the right fibers for a single day.
Another goal is to be sure that the four days offer different experiences in terms of color, texture, and history. Cotswolds are looking very likely (99% certain) for Spring 2018. I have connected with shepherds on several other breeds and expect to have the fleeces—but they aren’t here yet. As I confirm the other options (that is, receive the fleeces), I’ll see if I can remember to update this page. . . .
March 27–30, 2018 ♦ Missouri
PLYAway, Kansas City, Missouri
- The Classic Down Wools (for spinners), one-day, Tuesday, March 27; appears to be sold out as I’m assembling this page
- Basic Things Every Spinner Should Know about Wool, half-day, afternoon, Wednesday, March 28
- Wool Facts for Wool Geeks, one-day, Thursday, March 29; appears to be sold out
- The Classic Down Wools (for spinners), one-day, Friday, March 30; appears to be sold out
April 14, 2018 ♦ Colorado
YarnFest, Loveland, Colorado
Subject to refinement.
- Wool Types (for spinners), one-day, Saturday, April 14
The full YarnFest event runs from April 12–15, 2018.
June 15–17, 2018 ♦ Iowa
Iowa Sheep and Wool Festival, Ames, Iowa
Subject to refinement.
- “Love the One You’re With”: Local Wools (for spinners), one-day, Friday, June 15
- Shetlands (for spinners), one-day, Saturday, June 16
- “The Magic of Wool,” talk, Saturday, June 16, evening
- Rare-Breed Wools, yarn-based, for knitters, et al., half-day, morning, Sunday, June 17
- Reading/presentation and Q&A, afternoon, Sunday, June 17
November 5–8, 2018 ♦ Washington
Explore 4 Fall Fiber Retreat #1, Friday Harbor, Washington
Wild Card—Shetlands: four days
See Explore 4 pages. Arrive the 4th, depart the 9th unless staying for week #2.
Back by popular demand—and participants from the first Shetlands four-day retreat have already signed up to do it again! There’s a lot to be learned from and about Shetlands. I’ll be revising the material (I always do).
November 12–15, 2018 ♦ Washington
Explore 4 Fall Fiber Retreat #2, Friday Harbor, Washington
Four-by-four: Four fiber types in four days (revisiting)
See Explore 4 pages. Arrive the 11th, depart the 16th.
This Four-by-four retreat will feature fiber types that I’ve already covered in the spring Four-by-fours. In some cases, folks will have missed those and want to make their acquaintance. In other cases, this will be an opportunity to explore them more deeply. I should be able to announce the fibers some time in spring 2018.