WGRI Programs 2018-2019

Submitted by Mary Brunell, Vice President WGRI


September 8, 2018: 

Location: North Kingstown Library

 Breaking the Grid

Every big turn in my path as a weaver began with the question “what if?” This question has inevitably followed by time in my studio playing, experimenting, and sampling. In this presentation I will talk about my evolution as a weaver and textile artist, and focus on my most recent work with woven and pleated textiles. I will talk about my creative process, the teachers who have influenced me, and what excites me. I hope my presentation will inspire others to tap into their own playful spirit to create work that is fresh and personally meaningful. 

Kate Barber is a long-time weaver who recently crossed over from weaving functional textiles to weaving textile art. Two years ago, after 23 years of weaving wearables and textiles for the home, she ventured into new territory; making non-functional pieces using the technique of woven shibori.

Several teachers over the years have had a lasting influence on her, including Kay Sekimachi, Liz Williamson, Catherine Ellis, Rachel Meginnes, and Mo Kelman. She sharpened her skills as a weaver during five years working at the Silk Weaving Studio in Vancouver, British Columbia. At the Studio, she designed and wove small-production, one-of-a-kind scarves and shawls, and fell in love with natural dyes.  Toward the end of her tenure at the Silk Weaving Studio, she completed two years in the textile program at Capilano University where she built a foundation of other textile techniques. That foundation – and encouragement from teachers – gave her the confidence to set a goal for a solo exhibit of non-functional textile art. In 2016, she realized this goal with a show at the AS220 Reading Room gallery in Providence:  “Forward Folding” -- an exhibit of shibori-woven, pleated, and shaped textiles. Since then she has continued to explore the many exciting possibilities of woven shibori.


October 13, 2018

Location: North Kingstown Library

Celebrating Bertha Gray Hayes

(October 19,1878-December 10,1947) 

Bring your copy of Weaving Designs by Bertha Gray Hayes to the meeting for a discussion of her life and work.  As part of the discussion, you can “show and tell” any weaving you have done from her designs.  Two of the authors, Norma Smayda and Gretchen White will be in the group to enhance our discussion.

Discussion Leader: Janet Cooper


November 3, 2018: 

Location: North Kingstown Library

Organizing For The Fiber Addict

 Messy spaces are the sign of a creative mind, right? If your weaving space is more depressing than inspiring, maybe a little organizing would help. Learn about studio organizing from the perspective of a former Professional Organizer and member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO). Come to class with a list of your problem areas and take home some ideas for making your space work for you.  Materials/Handouts Fee: $2.00

Susan Targove started weaving in 1998 as an escape from her office cubicle and eventually left the cubicle for a fiber studio.  Completely unable to say no, she is a former Dean of the Weavers’ Guild of Boston and currently serves on the boards for the Boston guild, the Nashoba Valley Weavers’ Guild and the New England Weavers’ Seminar.  She lives in Lunenburg with her engineer husband and two cats.

Organizing class photo.jpg


December 1, 2018

Location: North Kingstown Library


Annual Holiday Celebration and Potluck Brunch

Yankee Swap with Sally Rianhard

Use Your Loom Ends for the Yankee Swap

Make a potholder, hot matt, pin cushion, ornament or anything you can think of made from the end of one of your weaving project’s. Be creative!  Bring it in a holiday wrapping for our first Yankee Swap led by our own Sally Rianhard.


January 5, 2019:  

Location: North Kingstown Library


Weaver Rose and His Weavings

William Henry Harrison Rose, better known as Weaver Rose, was a well-known 19thcentury Rhode Island weaver who cherished the hundreds of drafts he inherited from his ancestors, created more, and preserved them for prosperity.  His drafts include far more than the overshot we associate with him:  summer and winter, spot Bronson, M’s and O’s, and huck are among others in this collection.  Weaver Rose became nationally known for the high level of his artistic and technical standards, and his work was in great demand, enabling him to make his livelihood as a weaver.  This slide presentation will focus on his handwritten patterns, his weavings and contemporary interpretations by a study group, the Wednesday Weavers.  One of his weavings, and more importantly, some of his handwritten drafts will be shown.

Drafting From Weaver Rose Patterns:  We can now make use of patterns found in historic weaving books, and weave exact replicas or our own interpretations. Bring graph paper, pencil, and eraser.

Norma Smayda, a weaver, teacher, exhibitor and juror, learned to weave in Norway and occasionally returned to teach. In 1974, she established and continues to run the Saunderstown Weaving School. She has an MFA in Visual Design from UMass-Dartmouth, and has received the HGA Award of Excellence, the NEWS Weaver of Distinction, and the WGB Distinguished Achievement Award. At the 70thanniversary celebration in 2017, the WGRI established the Norma Smayda Guild Leadership Award for Excellence in Leadership, Weaving and Teaching.  Norma has written articles for various weaving journals and has had work featured in several books. Norma's special interests include Scandinavian weaving, the works of William Henry Harrison Rose and Bertha Gray Hayes, and weaving with the fan reed. She coauthored Weaving Designs by Bertha Gray Hayes (2009).Her recent publication with Gretchen White is OnduléTextiles: Weaving Contours with a Fan Reed (2017).  She especially likes weaving functional pieces and reducing complicated designs to as few shafts as possible. 

Weaver Rose.jpeg


February 2, 2019

Location: North Kingstown Library

Mini Workshops

Members will participate in mini workshops repeated through the morning, so you can choose different ones to try.

Dorset Cartwheel Buttons.  Margaret Moone will show us a handwoven or handknit garment is always improved with perfect buttons. These cannot fail to match as they are made with the yarn you have used for the garment. Margaret will show you how to make these buttons and you can go home with one of your own.

Hem stitching.  Janet Cooper will demonstrate a simple and easy technique for hemstitching handwoven items that produces an elegant openwork pattern. A finished item with this hemstitch has the advantage that both sides look like the “right” side. Examples will be provided for practice.

Seven Strand Ancient Viking Braid. Norma Smayda will introduce us to this braid technique. Bring supplies with you: a piece of cardboard (shirt cardboard, back of note pad cardboard, etc.), ca 8" x  8".  If they cut it to a circle, ca 6" in diameter that is even better; 5/2 cotton or equivalent yarns in a few colors.  4-6' long; scissors.



 March 2, 2019:   

Location: North Kingstown Library

Color and Weave Effect

Color and weave effect describes an infinite number of patterns which can be created by repeating a small pattern of light and dark colors in the warp and wefts using a basic weave structure.  The visual patterns formed do not resemble the weave structure and cannot be predicted without a color draft.  This presentation will explore the general characteristics of color and weave effect by looking at samplers, drafts, and reviewing color drafting. A 50+ page learning packet with notes, drafts, and project ideas will be available to each participant for a fee.  

Bring:  pencil, eraser, ruler, colored pencils

Beth Cederberg Guertin of Waltham, Massachusetts has been teaching both rigid heddle and multi shaft weaving for more than thirty-five years to children and adults.  She enjoys designing projects to use up small amounts of yarns.  She is a member of the Weavers’ Guild of Boston and is their treasurer.  Beth was recognized by the WGB with the Helen Barrett Award in 2013 and the Celebration of Weaving Life Award in 2017.  Beth owns and teaches weaving at her studio, A Place to Weave,in Waltham.  Her website is www.aplacetoweave.com


April 6, 2019:  

Location: North Kingstown Library

Eastern European Textiles in the URI Historic Textile & Costume Collection

The University of Rhode Island has been fortunate to have received many textile samples from all over the world, including some from the eastern areas of Europe. These countries share rich traditions of identification through clothing decoration. Their needlecraft reflects regions that are rich in culture. Changing political boundaries and two world wars combined with the influence of “western” dress have diminished the weaving and needlework decorative arts. Happily, through the generosity of others, we can admire some of these textiles here in Rhode Island, and explore a few of the many decorative elements in eastern European textiles. This presentation will include a PowerPointintroduction as well as time to examine (with gloves and magnifying glasses) textiles from the Historic Textile & Costume Collection. 

Susan J. Jerome is the Collections Manager at the University of Rhode Island Historic Textile and Costume Collection. She earned her MS degree from the University of Rhode Island, Department of Textiles, Fashion Merchandising and Design. Prior to continuing her education, she worked for a number of years at Mystic Seaport Museum.Ms. Jerome works as a textile and quilt conservator, lectures on topics of fashion history and needlecraft, and is a consultant to museums and historical societies. An avid textilian, she is happiest when writing, talking and doing all things textile.

Czech textiles.jpg

May 4, 2019: 

Location: North Kingstown Library

Catalognes: Coverlets of Quebec

Through a lecture and Power Point presentation, Manon will briefly discuss the history of weaving from the Quebec area, particularly the history of rag coverlets known as “Catalognes”.    She will cover topics such as the origins of the coverlets’ name to what fibers were used in warp and weft, and her own involvement in the making of these traditional coverlets as a child.  Manon will finish her talk by showing pictures of today’s weavers from Quebec who continue this special weaving tradition.   Her personal catalogne collection spanning three generations will be on display.

Manon Pelletier, a member of the Weavers’ Guild of Rhode Island, started weaving in 1999 at the Saunderstown Weaving School. But her love for weaving began long before.   Manon’s passion for all things handwoven started during her years as a child in her native Quebec home.  Most precious to her are the rag coverlets known as “Catalognes”, handwoven by family members and passed on from one generation to the next.  Although Manon mainly weaves cloth for garment construction, she plans to one day create her own catalogne continuing this rich family tradition.



June 1, 2019

Location: North Kingstown Library

Annual Meeting with Election of Officers

Weaving Challenge with Sally Rianhard and Margaret Moone and Potluck Luncheon