Harrisville Designs

Nacktschnecke... plus the best yarn photos of the week

It has been raining here in northern Colorado. I grew up in the land of sunshine. I expect Colorado offer up 300+ days a year of the stuff. It has been raining for weeks. Now don't get me wrong. The water is wonderful and my worries about all the forests burning down this summer have decreased drastically, though the worry about flooding has increased proportionally. Clearly I have a long-standing habit of worrying about things I can't do anything about. We are currently simultaneously under a Flood Warning, Winter Storm Watch, and Flash Flood Warning. It is supposed to snow later, so it seems reasonable to just stay home today. The family in the SUV stuffed with camping gear towing a pop-up trailer that just drove by by is going to wish they were sitting on the couch knitting and reading books about color as well.

It is so wet that as I was drinking my tea yesterday morning staring out the slider at the rain, I noticed a little visitor on the other side of the glass.
Nacktschnecke is one of the only words I remember from the brief German tutorials we enjoyed while visiting Erfurt from my friend and colleague Conni Theimer Gardella. I remember because schnecken means something like cinnamon roll which looks like a snail which is schnecke and nacktschnecke is naked snail which is a slug. I think my learning of the German language is pretty hopeless in general, but if I applied myself in just this way, perhaps I could learn some of it. Really I just need to know all the words for my favorite foods, some pleasantries for idle conversation, and all the words for yarn and weaving.

Yarn, weaving, and textiles being the most important things in my current sphere, here are some yarn photos I shot during a brief break in the rain Wednesday.
Yarn is Harrisville Highland by Harrisville Designs
I had the blessing of a friend coming to help me skein yarn yesterday. I was unreasonably, undeniably excited about this. She saved me three hours at the skein winder and seemed to have a great time. I hope she comes back. She is also originally from Germany so maybe if I bribe her with some schnecken?

Harrisville Designs Adventure

This is what happens in the sleepy town of Harrisville if you get too complacent and leave your car in the wrong place.
The workshop at Harrisville Designs is going well. I have been able to spend some time talking to Chick and Pat Colony who own the business as well as their son Nick who is now working with them. I am looking forward to Chick’s talk on Thursday about the history of Harrisville Designs. 
The students are working hard and learning a great deal. The workshop is open 24 hours a day and I suspect they are burning the candle late at night working on the technical issues. I have to admit that I went kayaking instead of hanging out in the weaving studio last night. The house I am staying at is on Harrisville Pond. But in New Mexico it would definitely be called a lake. I was so exhausted from the teaching I fell asleep when it got dark and didn't wake up until 7am.
The weavers up late got stuck last night and were waiting for me this morning. Ah for enough energy to teach all day... until 10 pm. I just don't have it in me. Hachures were the problem. Fortunately today we're doing so things that most people find really fun. A transparency technique and a lot of color blending.
Weavers at work.
 This afternoon we get to visit the spinning mill. I can't wait. Expect pictures.

Tapestry Class at Harrisville Designs

I weave my large tapestries on the Harrisville rug loom that my grandfather gave to me when he could no longer weave. And since I started working with James Koehler, I have used Harrisville yarns for my work. So getting a request to teach at Harrisville Designs this summer was quite exciting to me. I have an aunt who is also a weaver with a Harrisville rug loom (we're a looney loomy family) and she has taken a couple classes at Harrisville with great stories of lakes and old brick buildings and a studio full of sunshine. Now it is my turn to go there. I feel a little like I'm going home even though I've never been to Harrisville at all.

The class I'll be teaching is 5 days and will include the content from my popular Color Gradation for Tapestry class. We will have a couple extra days in this class to explore ways to use technique and color to achieve the visual effects each student is interested in in tapestry. We will explore uses of color on the loom as well as through slide presentations and discussion. We will weave a sampler to practice these techniques and all students will be able to weave a small tapestry or a study for a larger work. I revel in teaching to a wide variety of experience levels at once. As long as you know some very basic things about tapestry weaving, you'll get along fine in this class. And if you're on your 50th tapestry, come and weave with me also. There is always more to learn for both of us. We will use the Knitting and Weaving Center's Harrisville floor looms. Unlike a lot of tapestry weavers, I most enjoy weaving on a floor loom, so this is a chance for me to convert some of my students to this way of doing tapestry. (Grin)

Harrisville Design classes are taught in an old spinning mill which has been beautifully renovated. And of course what could be more gorgeous than New Hampshire in August?

More information is available on the Harrisville Designs website HERE.
The specific class list is HERE.
And the link to my teaching page on my website is HERE with more information about this class and some good words from past students.

The class is August 5-9, 2013.
Mark your calendars!

Yarn waiting for tapestry weavers at the Michigan League of Handweaver's Conference in August 2012