Category Archives: Programs

November 18 – Catharine Ellis

Series of handwoven panels dyed in a range of color from yellow on the left to scarlet on the right, using shibori technique.
The Intersection of Weaving and Dyeing

Although weaving and dyeing are two distinct textile skills, the combination and integration of these processes one can vastly expand a design vocabulary. The result is a more complex and personalized finished textile. Applications for these weave/dye combinations include ikat, woven shibori, and cross dyeing. The primary focus of this talk will be the use of natural dyes, but synthetic dye use is also applicable. Catharine will share her thought process, her dye choices, and talk about the evolution of her woven and dyed work over more than 40 years.

photo of Catharine EllisCatharine Ellis has been a weaver and a dyer for over 40 years. After three decades of teaching the Fiber Program at Haywood Community College in NC she is now dedicated to studio work, focusing on natural dye processes. She also does specialized, selected teaching, in the U.S. and internationally. Recent projects include teaching natural dyeing in Guatemalan through Mayan Hands.

Catharine is the originator of the woven shibori process and author of the instructional book, Woven Shibori (Interweave Press, 2005) and The Weaver’s Studio – Woven Shibori: Revised and Updated (Interweave Press, 2016). Her most recent publication is The Art and Science of Natural Dyes: Principles, Experiments, and Results (2019). All three books are available to borrow from the guild library.

Catharine’s Website
Catharine’s Blog

October 21 – Deborah Corsini

Deborah Corsini Fire Season Wedge Weave TapestryBold graphic line, zig zag stripes and scalloped selvedges are striking characteristics of wedge weave. Instead of weaving perpendicular to the warp, as is usual for tapestry, wedge weave is an eccentric weaving technique where the wefts are woven at an angle to the warp. In wedge weave the patterned design and weaving structure are inextricably connected.

In her presentation Deborah will discuss the brief time when some Navajo weavers experimented with this “rouge” technique and the influence that their work and this style has had on her and other contemporary weavers. She will show images of Navajo wedge weaves and of her own work in wedge weave and that of other contemporary weavers experimenting with eccentric weft techniques.

Deborah Corsini has a lifelong passionate interest in the study of textiles, textile cultures and the making of textile art. A weaver for over 50 years she is a studio artist exhibiting her works nationally. She holds a Masters in Textiles from San Francisco State University and a B.F.A. from California College of Arts (and Crafts.) She has taught weaving and tapestry at City College of San Francisco and workshops in various textile techniques such as tablet weaving and wedge weave at the Richmond Art Center, the Mendocino Art Center, and the Conference of Northern CA Handweavers. She will be offering a workshop in wedge weave in the upcoming CNCH in 2022. Deborah has been lucky to have had two textile related careers. As the former Creative Director of P & B Textiles and a textile designer she honed her sense of color and design and appreciation of patterns both printed and woven. As the former curator of the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles she gained a deeper respect and appreciation for the history of quilts and the ever-evolving contemporary fiber art scene. She is active in the community and continues her studio practice in Pacifica, CA.

2021-2022 Guild Programs

The Programs Committee is happy to announce our 2021-2022 programs. At this time, all guild meetings will be conducted via Zoom until it is safe to meet in person again. Meetings are on 3rd Thursdays of each month, beginning at 7PM. Zoom links are available in the Member’s Calendar.

  • September 16, 2021 – Ginger Summit: Felting
  • October 21, 2021 – Deborah Corsini: Wedge Weave
  • November 18, 2021 – Catharine Ellis: The Intersection of Weaving and Dyeing
  • December 16, 2021 – Holiday Party (in person if safe, Zoom social if not)
  • January 20, 2022 – Mayumi Fujio: Mushroom Dye
  • February 17, 2022 – Andean Textile Council Board Member: Textile Traditions of the Andes
  • March 17, 2022 – Miriam Omura: Warp Painting
  • April 21, 2022 – Marilyn Romtka: Uzbek Ikat
  • May 26, 2022 – CNCH 2022 Shared Experiences (note changed date due to CNCH 2022)
  • June 16, 2022 – Elections, Guild Sale / Social (in person if safe, Zoom social if not)

September 16 – Ginger Summit

Ginger Summit landscape in felt. A bubbling stream with trees showing autumn foliage of reds and oranges.
“Walk by A Mountain Stream”. Ginger Summit. HGA: Small Expressions 2021

Ginger Summit has been a creator for all of her life, from weaving, creating spirit figures and musical instruments out of gourds (author of over 7 books on gourds), and creating community (Los Altos City Council and Mayor). Her latest venture is creating art with felt.

Ginger will share with us her journey through felt, how she developed her own process for
working with both wet and dry felt, and some of her favorite pieces, from self healing to commercial pieces. One of her recent pieces, “Walk by A Mountain Stream” was accepted into Handweavers Guild of America (HGA) Small Expressions 2021, an annual juried exhibit featuring contemporary small-scale works. The exhibit showcases works created using fiber techniques in any media, not to exceed 15 inches (38 cm) in any direction, including mounting, framing, or display devices.

April 15 – Barbara Shapiro

Art in the Time of COVID

Woven Vessel with Lid Black Sheep member Barbara Shapiro will share the productive burst of artistic output inspired by moving her studio in January 2020 and by current personal and political events. The sequestration that Covid forced upon us all brought forth lots of new work in several series. Unfinished and abandoned projects from years ago were seen with new eyes and finally finished. Newly discovered materials inspired different ways of working. And as always, Indigo colored her materials. Barbara hopes to inspire you to look at your own work in new ways as you enjoy this saga of 20-21 in her studio in the time of Covid.

"Worn with Dignity" - Horn bag with patches

May 20 – Jennifer Moore

Mathemagical Design – Geometry in Textiles

Mathemagical Design Logo - Rainbow and Black woven designSince ancient times, human beings have observed the world around them and found recurring patterns in nature. The Golden Proportion, the Fibonacci Series, symmetry movements, tessellations and fractals are some of the mathematical ideas that have found their way into art and architecture for thousands of years. In this slide show we will see examples of how these ideas have been used throughout history, various cultures, and particularly in contemporary fiber art.

From the first time that Jennifer sat down at a loom, she was drawn to the orderly universe of colored threads and the rhythmic repetition in the process of weaving. Because of her background in piano and pipe organ, she felt an immediate affinity with this new stringed instrument whose patterns flowed from her hands in the form of color and design rather than sound.

Jennifer has developed new methods of setting up and weaving doubleweave and made it accessible and understandable for all weavers. Her techniques and systems for working in doubleweave can also be found in my book The Weaver’s Studio: Doubleweave and in her online courses.

March 18 – Robyn Spady

Totally Twill – The Basics

Parallell Twills Sample by Robyn Spady: red weft with orange warpTwills are one of the most versatile weave structures and the possibilities are amazing! The breadth of weaving twills can be a bit daunting, but so much fun! In this program, Robyn will cover the basics from straight draw and point twills and then move on to broken, undulating, M&W, Dornick, plaited, and turned twills.

Robyn Spady was introduced to handweaving as a baby with her handwoven baby blanket woven by her great-grandmother.  Inspired by her blankie, she learned to weave at a young age and has been weaving for over 50 years.  She completed HGA’s Certificate of Excellence in Handweaving (COE-W) in 2004 with the specialized study Loom-controlled Stitched Double Cloth.    Robyn is fascinated by the infinite possibilities of crossing threads and loves coming up with new ideas to create fabric and transform it into something new and exciting. She is committed to turning the weaving world on to double-faced fabrics, four-shaft weaves, uncommon and advanced weave structures, and passementerie techniques.

In 2016, Robyn launched Heddlecraft®, a digital magazine for handweavers. She believed there was a void in educational resources for the intermediate-to-advanced weaver (and adventure-seeking beginners).

February 18 – Ruby Leslie

Sampling is Not a Dirty Word!

Ruby entrapped in warpAre you a member of that illustrious “full-size sample” club, feeling guilty that you should have sampled first…but there wasn’t enough time, yarn, or money available, and you were sure your weaving software would figure out everything for you? Listen up! The aim of sampling is to acquire information, not cause guilt or pain! Stop treating sampling as a dreaded disease – sampling IS weaving and can significantly improve your textiles.

An inveterate sampler, Ruby has always tried to extract as much information as possible from each warp. After years of being a closet sampler, she wants to dismantle the negative ideas that the word “sampling” invokes and turn it into an easy habit to embrace. Sampling is more than weaving or not weaving a sample at the loom before embarking on a project. It is a design tool – an easily acquired way of thinking about how to weave and create cloth. There are techniques and strategies for how to extract a maximum amount of information from a surprisingly small investment of time, money and/or yarn.

Ruby Leslie maintains a full-time weaving and teaching studio in northern Vermont, where she designs her own line of handwovens as Ruby Charuby Weavings. Boundless enthusiasm for sampling and experimenting, especially with color and its interaction with structure, has guided Ruby’s creative endeavors from the beginning of her weaving career 30 years ago. Handwoven magazine’s invitation to become a contributing member of their ‘Color Forecast’ series, creating swatches on a regular basis, was the impetus for Ruby to streamline her design process. This fueled her desire to share her insights about how to successfully integrate color, structure and yarn in weaving without having to dye yarn or rely on recipes. Ruby has taught above the Arctic Circle in northern Norway and Greenland, as well as at Convergence, regional conferences and guilds throughout the US. She was one of three weaver/designer teams invited by the Handweavers Guild of America to create a collaborative runway ensemble for the second Design Fashion Challenge at Convergence 2010 in Albuquerque, NM.

The rhythms of her looms inspired her children to produce the music video Getya Loom Goin’  for their “Ma, the Weava.”

January 21 – Laverne Waddington

A program of images and video by Laverne Waddington on

AN INTRODUCTION TO WOVEN STRUCTURES USED IN SOUTH AMERICAN TEXTILES.

Simple looms do not necessarily mean simple textiles. Weavers in South America use rustic looms to create complex cloth employing a wide variety of techniques using complementary-warp structures and both supplementary warps and weft. Even plain-weave textiles are not in any way ‘’plain’’ when incorporating ikat or finished with intricate knotted fringes, colorful joining stitches and tubular edgings.

In this program Laverne will walk you through some of the various woven structures she has encountered while learning to weave in South America, share stories about her experiences learning them and show examples of how she has used these in her own work on the backstrap loom.

Laverne Waddington has been learning to weave on simple looms with indigenous teachers in South America since 1996. In her home in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, she draws on ethnic design influences from around the world to create pieces on a backstrap loom using the various techniques and structures she has studied in South and Central America as well as with backstrap weavers from Vietnam and Myanmar.

Since 2010, she has published eight instructional manuals on the various woven structures and finishing techniques that she has studied and produced a dvd on Operating a Backstrap Loom.

Her articles on backstrap weaving and indigenous textiles have appeared in Handwoven magazine. Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot and Spin Off as well as in the published proceedings of the 2012 and 2016 Braid Society conferences.

She has shared her skills and experiences with many visitors to Bolivia over the years and now reaches a global audience with her weaving tutorials and travel tales on her blog. She provides online advice and support to weavers through forums such as Ravelry and teaches and speaks at guilds and textile conferences around the world.