Monday, 21 September 2015

Folk East - Spin City Weaving Workshop

What could be better than a folk festival with a craft area?!

Teaching weaving at Folk East

When I discovered Folk East was championing folk crafts as well as folk music my heart leapt. It made total sense! Folk music is all about keeping tradition alive and repurposing it for the current generation, and folk crafts such as knitting, weaving and hand spinning are fighting in the same corner.

The Folk Festival at sunset

My sign advertising my workshops and drop-in sessions
I applied to take part in the Folk East Art Arcade at Glemham Hall in Suffolk and was quickly taken up on my idea to host tapestry weaving workshops. Not only did this mean that I would be able to share my passion for all things wool and textured, I got to listen to my favourite music at the same time!

The woven wall-hangings we were making at Folk East

My Spin City sign outside my awning
A music festival is quite different from my normal knitting festival. Instead of having a pre-made stall, I brought along my lovely vintage caravan and set up shop in my awning, right next to the main stage. It was really handy to have my little 'home-from'home' attached to my stall. For example, if I needed a jam sandwich, I could just make myself one from my cupboards! If I needed to get a cushion for an extra workshop attendee - 'bobs your uncle I could get one from the caravan. I loved it.  

My weaving workshops were really popular, and I felt a real connection with my students.  I am a naturally enthusiastic person, and when I feel that coming back at me from someone i've taught a skill to - it might just be one of the best feelings in the world.

Deep in concentration
We all sat around and happily wove away for about an hour and a half per class. Each student received a loom to take home, a weaving needle and an array of vintage and handspun yarns to choose from to create their weaving. 

I went through the basic techniques, and then we quickly progressed onto TEXTURE! My youngest student was only 6 years old - and she left saying she wants to be a weaver when she grows up. Awhhh. 

I think one of the best moments was teaching a bobble effect technique to my Saturday group while listening to Sam Kelly live on the main stage. Not bad for a day at the office huh? 

Look how near I am to the main stage! It's right behind me. :-) 

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