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Classes are like traveling to an exotic land - as Mark Twain once said about travel -

you can lose yourself and find yourself at the same time!

 

To register for any of these classes, you need to print the registration form and mail it in with a check or your VISfA/MC info for the amount of the instruction fee only. Materials fees will be collected at the time of class.

If you are interested in a workshop here and don't live in the area you can find a list of some hotels/accommodations here

Be sure to check out our Events page for other gatherings of interest

Classes get added randomly based on what customers ask for when, and also based on when I am able to confirm dates and details with the instructors.

So check back periodically or sign up for our once monthly newsletter since I always alert customers to new classes thru that.

 

 

Just Get Started - Crochet! Thursday Jan 24th 5:30 - 7:30

There are so many more inviting crochet patterns available now, such as this wonderful Noro book. And because of the improved pattern support, I've had more people in recently asking for some basic crochet instruction - so here is what I can offer this winter session.

This evening is designed to get you started, so I'll show you the chain stitch and the single crochet working just a sample swatch, not a project. Tho' with what you learn in class you could make a pair of wristlets/fingerless mitts, scarf, shawl, etc.

And if time permits and people are catching on quickly, I'll also show you how to work this simple stitch in the round, working increases so you could easily make a hat.

So you'll have some basic concepts to get you going

Instruction fee is $10. Bring (or buy when you get here) a hook size K and bulky yarn

Fundamentals of Knitting - Hat or Cowl Thursdays Jan 31, Feb 7, 21 & 28th 5:30 - 7:00

Join me for this 4 week Knitting Fundamentals and choose to knit either a hat or cowl while you learn to cast on, knit, purl, increase and decrease and bind off. You'll also get oriented to how patterns are written and how to read/follow one.

If you've never knit before, the cowl shown here is a great first project to learn the two fundamental stitches of knitting - the knit and the purl. And of course, how to cast on and to bind off. And it will keep your neck cozy thru even the coldest of winter days this winter. Play with two different colors for an interesting reversible, 2 color scarf or use a lovely hand painted yarn as I have shown here. You have 2 options for a hat, the "spiral" hat shown above, and another hat whose picture I can't find right now (whatever did I call the photo - I only have 6257 photos on the website to look thru for it!) , but if I sleep on it, I'm sure I'll remember. So check back for another hat design that also gives you good practice of the fundamentals.

With what you learn in this class you'll be able to go off on your own and explore lots of accessory and garments on your own, or join us for a more intermediate class in the late spring or early fall!

Instruction fee for 4 weeks of instruction, patterns and handouts: $50

Needles and yarn for the class available at a 15% discount..

 

Silk Paper Making - book Binding and basket weaving with Silk!!! Sat May 4th 10 - 5

Use 100% silk fibers - tussah, eri, bombyx, reeled, hankies, etc - to create paper that you will then use to make a beautiful note book and to weave a basket.

From using the gorgeous natural colors of both cultivated and wild types of silk to the beautifully dyed deep saturated colors of tussah silk, you will be amazed at the gorgeous papers you can create! In addition to using some of what you create in class to bind a notebook, you'll also make lots of sheets of 100% silk paper that you can take home to then use for notes and cards to send for the holidays or to consider for special party (wedding?) invitations! The bound notebooks and woven baskets (Yes...those baskets above are woven from 100% silk paper!) make lovely gifts!

So make a ladies day of it - get some friends together, pack a lunch and come spend a day exploring color and silk and being amazed at what can be done with this fiber!

Instruction fee includes all of the silk you use: $100

 

Kumihimo a Dog Leash Mon Feb 4, 11 & 18 5:30 - 6:30

Learn the craft of Kumihimo and make a new leash for your best friend - just in time for a new spring puppy addition to the family or just to freshen up your best buddy's wardrobe for the spring.

If you're like me, you're tired of seeing the same 8 patterns/colors of dog collars and leashes around - whether PFW, Pet Smart, Guys Farm & Yard---they all have the same ones!

So come put your own colors together and weave/braid a new leash that will be unique. Using either cotton or a cotton/linen/hemp blend yarn and the Japanese braiding technique of Kumihimo, I'll guide you thru the steps of making a great handle, weaving the leash body, and then finishing it off and adding the hook.

Class fee includes the yarn, metal hardward, kumihimo disc and instruction: $45

 

Nuno Felt Scarf or cowl Saturday April 27th...

In this workshop you'll make a lovely silk and merino wool scarf (or cowl) while learning the technique of "nuno" felting.

Join me for this 1 day class, have fun working with color and texture, and while doing so you'll learn all the basics (and some nuances!) of the technique of working wool into fabric (nuno felting).

Instruction fee includes the materials and instruction: $95

Introdution to Wet Felting Techniques Sat Jan 19th 10 - 5 FULL

Learn the nuances and details of wet felting while you develop the skills to continue on exploring this wonderful medium on your own, or, with what you learn in this introductory class you can join us for the intermediate class in February! Good for clothing to accessories, home decor to saddle blankets and cat caves, this traditional craft has adorned homes and kept bodies warm for centuries! All using the renewable fleece from a sheep and a little warm soapy water and elbow grease!

While working thru the "whys and wherefores" of this ancient technique, you'll learn a lot about the wool we work with and you'll get a chance to test the varied tools used by felters to achieve different end results.

We'll be working on samples, not trying to create a particular end product, although the samples we make are large enough they could become a hot plate, wall hanging, be sewn into a little knitting accessory pouch as that shown above, etc.

YOu'll learn a couple different ways to layout fibers, the differences between working with batt and top/sliver, you'll experience the difference in felting fine wool vs. coarse wool, and using tools heralding from 300 BC right up to a battery operated sander!

So join me on this journey exploring this ancient technique and learn about the many possibilities of this craft while you enjoy a tactile and visual retreat for your senses!

Instruction includes handouts and materials used in class: $65

 

Open Studio - Intermediate Wet Felting Help Sat Feb 9th 10 - 5

So you've learned the basics and maybe have expllored some felting on your own but want some guidance thru a more complex project than you have done on your own. Maybe you want to make a "Cat Cave" for your feline companion or a house for your hedgehog? Perhaps you want to make a hat or slipper that actually fits? Or maybe you have a vision of an interesting vessel you want to make but can't quite figure out how to approach it or what shape to make the resist?

So as long as you know all the fundamentals of wet felting and are comfortable laying out and working thru the process of felting but need guidance taking on a more complex project, I hope you can join me for this Open Studio.

A project that requires felting around a resist (and can be done in a day!) is fair game for this class. So think 3-D! But keep ths size/scope contained as you have just 1 day and only 1/2 of a 6 foot table to work on. So we're talking about a hat, bag, vessel, cat cave, wristlets, etc - no scarves or long projects. This is about creating a 3-D piece around a resist.

You come in with your desired project in mind (actually, I'd like to know what you are thinking about making when you register just to be sure we're on the same page) and I'll guide you thru the math to figure your layout, resist design, layout of the wool and felting. All the way thru to finishing steps - and I can't understate how important this is!!! I see so much felt at farmer's markets and for sale at shows and even galleries that is not actually finished! And poor quality felt is not good. So we want your piece to be of the scope/size that you can finish it during class so I can guide you on when it is really done and how to best finish it for good quality and durability!

Instruction fee: $55 Buy the materials for your project here the day of the class at a 10% discount.

 

Flawless Finishing Made Easy Sat Mar 16th 10 - 1

 

The devil is in the details! You can knit your sweater pieces beautifully, but if they aren't put together nicely the sweater could be a disappointment. And knowing what techniques to use is the key to doing this step well and not dreading it!

I hated to "finish" garments when I first started knitting - mostly because I didn't really know the best way and therefore it seemed more difficult than it should be and the garments never looked very good when I was done! And it is my impression that quite a few knitters feel the way I used to and so they mever knit garments and instead stick to shawls and accessories.

So join me and learn the nuances and techniques for putting a sweater together well so it looks professional and I guarantee that you will no longer hate this step.

It's all about arming yourself with the knowledge and skills to do it easily and well.

We'll cover side seams to shoulder seams, picking up stitches neatly, a couple of buttonhole options, weaving in ends, and blocking.

And I'll introduce a few things to consider/slight modifications to make to a pattern BEFORE you knit a sweater that will make the finishing neater, too!

Instruction fee: $25

Steeks? No Worries! Sat Mar 16th 2-5.

A number of customers in the past - and most recently a participant in the Nordic Inspired Mitten class - have expressed their discomfort with the notion of cutting their knitting for a steek! It really isn't as terrifying as you might think if you know what you are doing....

so if you want to learn this technique which is really helpful for either patterned cabled sweaters like that shown in grey above (this Harrisville pattern uses steeks) or some of the multi-color/fair isle patterns (like the well known "fana" sweater shown above in turquoise/white) , then join me this evening and we'll knit a small swatch on which to practice a steek and I'll show you a simple way to secure the fabric before cutting, and then a couple of ways to cover the cut edge for neatness.

Bring with you at least 75 yards of yarn (worsted or bulky so we don't spend all night knitting) and the needles appropriate for the yarn. Bring another 25-30 yards of a different color that is the same gauge. Also, please bring a crochet hook equal to the size of the needle you are working with.

Instruction fee: $25

VT Breeds - Felt, Knit and Spin Them! Sat Feb 16th 10 - 4

This class was suggested by a felter, but I think it could be equally interesting to spinners and knitters.

Join me for a hands-on journey to  experience the qualities and characteristics of 10 different breeds of sheep. I've chosen breeds that are raised locally and that depict a range of fiber characteristics from fine to coarse. Of course you can do this sort of exploration on your own- that's what I've done over the years. I've purchased fleeces from over 48 different breeds and I've spun, felted and knit with them to "experience" them. But one fleece can go a long way! So if you like the idea but don't want to invest in so many fleeces - and potentially have a lot of one to use even tho' after working with it a bit you decide you don't like it - then this is a great way for you to learn about the breeds, their characteristics and to put the fiber thru its paces without all the work, time and effort to track down each breed, wash it, prep it etc.

You'll learn about the history and origin of the breed, the fleece characteristics and qualities that make it unique and best suited to different applications and you will have an opportunity to either felt (if you are a felter), spin (if you are a spinner) or knit (if you are a knitter) each breed.

Understanding each breed's fleece characteristics will help you better understand what sorts of projects to felt with it, how best to prepare the fiber and spin it, and what kinds of knitted garments it is best suited to.

N.B. If you are a felter, you will felt the breed, spinners will spin the breed and knitters can come and knit the breed since I have yarns in each of the 10 breeds we'll be covering.

If you are a felter, you'll need to bring your usual felting supplies (towel, bubble, water dish, soap, ball bauser, etc), spinners should bring their wheel (tuned up and ready to go), and knitters should bring an array of needles to swatch the various yarns.

]Everyone should bring a notebook and pen. I've got great pics of the sheep, lots of interesting history, facts and figures about the breed, and experience with the breeds to guide you thru what types of projects each breed might be suited to.

Instruction fee includes the fiber/yarn you will be using: $95

Rigid Heddle Weaving 101 Tues Jan 22, 29, and Feb 5th 5:30 - 7:30

Learn all the fundamentals of weaving on a rigid heddle loom during these three evening sessions and you'll enjoy hours of weaving pleasure thru the winter months and for years to come! Rigid Heddle looms offer lots of possibilities without the big investment required for a floor loom, so they are a great way to get started weaving.

During the first night, I'll go over every aspect of planning a project - from the math required to figure your warp and weft to the considerations of yarn, colors and pattern and what the desired end product is going to be - so you will leave knowing what type and size of yarn fits your intended purpose best as well as the amount you need for the warp and weft for your project.

On this first night I'll also demonstrate how easy it is to warp the loom so you have a visual of how it is done before you go home to warp your own!

Then you will return for our second session with your loom dressed and ready to weave. In this session I'll help you get started with good weaving techniques for beating your weft, getting good edges, advancing the loom,etc. - and if you have a sleying error, I'll show you some easy ways to fix that! Then your homework will be to weave the remainder of your project that week so in the last session, night three, I can walk you thru removing your project from the loom, show you several nice hem finishes and we'll block or full your piece.

You'll need to have a rigid heddle loom to take this class. If you have a floor or table top loom and want to join us, that is fine, but you will have to transport your loom here, so keep that in mind if it is a floor loom.

Instruction fee: $45

 

Mending Madness with Sashiko coming in March...stay tuned for details

Eco-Print a Silk Scarf Sat June 22nd 10 - 1

Join me and learn to print a scarf using plants and botanicals for the images. This is not a class on Eco Printing so I will not be going into the details of mordants and plants and all the nuances of this natural dye technique becasue there are a lot of variables involved in it. Instead, you will be using chemical dyes with the plants to ensure a good outcome. While you can bring any particularly interesing leaves you have from your yard, I will also have a variety of leaves from around here and we can pick from the dye garden out back so you will have lots of leaf shapes to play with in the design. Then I will guide you thru laying out a scarf (you can choose whether it be silk charmeuse or habotai silk) and dyeing it.

Fee includes the scarf and dyes used: $75

 

Design a Batt - or- Cabin Fever Buster! Wed Mar 6th 5:30 - 7:30

You know that every winter, about this time, you start to get pretty itchy to get out and play!

So if you are a knitter or a felter, join me for this colorful and playful evening and come create your own custom batt to spin or felt.

Everyone will start with a 4 oz batt of merino and to that you can add silk, locks, nepps, ramie, linen, yarns....whatever floats your boat and brings joy and color to your eyes. I'll show you how to incorporate these elements into the batt so you have a wonderful bag of wool to take home and play with to get you thru this last bit of winter weather!

Instruction fee includes the merino batt and the embellishments: $45

Stay Tuned for some exciting dyeing, felting and stitching classes coming in the fall!

 

 

 

Nota Bene: You must prepay to confirm your spot in a class. Fees paid to confirm a spot are NOT refundable if you, for any reason, cannot attend. If the class is cancelled by the teacher or store, then a full refund will be issued. Don't register unless you are sure you can participate, but don't delay since most classes fill quickly. In the event you sign up and can't make the class, you are welcome to send someone in your spot, but you are responsible for finding your replacement and making whatever financial arrangements between yourselves.