Tapestry retreat

Color in the Land of Enchantment: Taos 2019

Color in the Land of Enchantment: Taos 2019

Taos 2019: Color in the Land of Enchantment was a lot of fun. This tapestry retreat in Taos, NM wrapped up earlier this week after five days of experimenting with color.

One of my goals for the retreat was to help people lose the fear of color when designing for tapestry. This is a deeply seated fear for many of us—making color mistakes. We believe we are “bad” at color. We remember our elementary school teacher who told us our tree trunks could not be purple. Trees are brown. I am here to tell you that she was wrong. Sometimes tree trunks are purple.

We did talk formally about color theory. But we also messed around with exercises in paper and yarn. Color aid paper plus rubber cement* leads to sticky fingers, but also to revelations about how colors interact. Wrapping yarn combinations around cards can also be surprisingly interesting. And if you start moving those cards around, you can create a palette. Sure, eventually you need to weave a sample especially for a large tapestry, but we need a simple place to start learning how to do this. When designing for a particular piece, it is important to understand what you are trying to communicate. A lot of that communication comes through color and value choices.

What happens at tapestry camp, stays at tapestry camp... except for this

What happens at tapestry camp, stays at tapestry camp... except for this

Sweet mountain air, a community of people who love tapestry, and five days of fun.

The Colorado 2018 design retreat was so much fun. We had a wonderful group of people. As an instructor, it is so rewarding to spend five days with people who are able to ask questions both of the other people but also of themselves. They were able to dive into their creative selves and identify what they wanted to work on and then actually work on it!

This was a retreat where I encouraged everyone to follow their own path. This did mean that they had to think some about what they wanted to work on before coming to the retreat and then follow their ideas with some guidance from me and their fellow weavers throughout the week.

August's Tapestry Camp

August's Tapestry Camp

The second Colorado retreat went well. It was different from the first (details here) but also a great deal of fun with lots of adventuring and creativity. It is always fascinating to me to observe how a different mix of people changes the dynamic of a particular workshop. I've taught a lot of workshops in the last six years and every one is different. Even when the material I am teaching is very similar, the outcomes can be wildly different.

High mountain weaving at Tapestry Camp!

High mountain weaving at Tapestry Camp!

We had an amazing time in the July retreat at CSU Mountain Campus. What a group! We laughed, learned from each other, shared ideas, hiked some trails, watched the hummingbirds, looked for moose (no luck), searched out flowers, watched the clouds, and saw the brilliant stars.

Here is a bit of a photo essay from the week.