History

Stitched Up Textile Festival

The idea of a festival showcasing textile artists arose from a small group of people discussing a support festival for the Marvellous Miniatures display by the Victorian Quilters Association at the Wangaratta Exhibitions Gallery in June 1999. This small group of industrious people called upon the local community for help. Responses came from the local textile industry, art and craft groups, spinning, weaving, quilting and embroidery action groups.
With a limited budget and lots of enthusiasm an event was organised – The Stitched Up Textile Festival 1999 was created!

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22 Years of Mustering

The NSW town of Mudgee will be host to the 22nd Wool and Natural Fibre Muster on June 2 this year.
The Muster is an annual event organised by craft groups in the western regions of country NSW with an aim to help promote the use of natural fibres in hand crafts. The Muster features demonstrations, competitions and workshops on selected aspects of fibre craft.

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What is a Loomcraft School?

This question was asked at the last General Meeting. The simple explanation is that it is a week of workshops by tutors employed by the Guild, to cover any field of the textile arts, generally live-in and at a site where day students can attend. In recent years we have endeavoured to hold these every two years, alternating with an exhibition.

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The Back to Back Story

(Officially known as International Back to Back Wool Challenge)
In 1811 at Newbury in Berkshire, England, a £1,000 wager was made to make a coat from the sheep’s back to man’s back in one day. Watched by 5,000 people, the coat was completed in 13 hours. The sheep was eaten with much quaffing of beer to celebrate.

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Weaving and Spinning Metaphors

Rutgers University has put out a DVD to explain weaving and spinning. The weaving and spinning metaphors are so embedded in ancient literature that modern students need to understand the processes.
An Introduction to Wool-Working for Readers of Greek and LatinText & Textile

Weaving Arts and Lore

According to this web site of Kathleen Jenks, PhD, from Dept of Mythological Studies, Pacifica Graduate Institute:

Myths of weaving exist around the world as metaphors for creation. The spindle is often an axis mundi and its whirling whorls serve a cosmogonic function. Many goddesses are spinners and weavers.

Weaving Arts and LoreMythology’s Myth*ingLinks

1700s Weaving Patterns Produced on Vintage Looms

When people migrated from Pennsylvania in the 1700s, many carried weaving patterns for the blankets that would come in handy on such treks.
Pulaski County farmer Richard Guthrie found some of those patterns when he was going through family heirlooms dating back several hundred years.
Guthrie said he and his siblings had divided items from the family farm, and he and his wife got a so-called butler’s safe. In it, they found a copy of the 1700s deed to the original farm and the weaving patterns.
He donated the patterns to Bob Harman at the Olde Virginia Textile Museum, which opened last year in Pulaski, and Harman has started producing them on vintage looms at his museum.
The 54-by-68-inch blankets will go for $45 wholesale and $95 retail. Harman is hoping history organizations will use them as fundraisers. He also hopes to raise money from them to support the museum.
1700s weaving patterns produced on vintage loomsThe Roanoke Times

Mostly About the Journal

Following the “500th” article in the August Guild News:
The Guild was formed on 5 July, 1947. Previous to this there was a Hand Weavers’ Guild in Sydney however this became defunct during World War II.
The first Quarterly News was published in August 1949. It grew out of a suggestion by Mrs Jean McMahon at the Annual Meeting, so the Committee asked her to accept the position of editor, eventually producing 4 issues a year for 26 years. In 1954 the Quarterly was named The Australian Hand Weaver and Spinner, a name which continues to this day. The numbering system of our current annual Journal continues on from Volume l, 1949 however when we celebrate our 60th anniversary in 2007 it will be volume 60. The maths do not work out because Roman Numerals were used and went haywire a couple of times – we reverted to Arabic Numbers in 1986 after a few more errors. Following Mrs McMahon’s death the Journal was given a new format with Beth Hatton as editor in 1977; the breadth of areas covered was enlarged, but it was still in black and white. By changes in the Constitution it gradually became published twice a year, (sometimes combined issues) and currently one generous issue with more photographs and colour.

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Weaving and Linen

It isn’t uncommon to find in a probate inventory that an ancestor owned several yards of lining. To understand this term, we first need to remind ourselves that our ancestors didn’t care all that much about spelling and that they spoke with accents unlike our present-day American accents. Lining was the most common way of spelling linen. This even gives us a clue of how it was pronounced.
Linen yarn could create a variety of fabrics: from delicate underclothing and fine handkerchiefs to sturdy sheeting and practical outerwear. Linsey woolsey was a common fabric woven from both linen and woolen yarn.

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Weaving of Fabric and Lives

The clanking sounds of a loom at the American Textile History Museum take visitors back to a time when clothes were hand-woven and textiles drove the New England economy in this historic mill town and others.
Textiles are such a basic part of everybody’s life, says Diane L Fagan Affleck, the museum’s senior research associate. And yet I think partly because of the technology that we have today, we just don’t even think about where they came from or how they came to be.

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