Saturday, November 1, 2014

Guild Newsletter, November 2014

President’s Column                           

Hello Fiber Friends!

I was really sad to miss the meeting last month and  Laura's presentation on Batik. I have been a fan of Laura's for many years and have several of her bags! Las Vegas is ok for a one time trip but not some place I'd like to go back! Gambling is not my thing! Well, if I'd won maybe it would have been! We did enjoy the show The Jersey Boys that we went to see. Our friend's son's wedding was gorgeous and Lisa and I did have a good time! It's always great to be with friends and this family was our carpool for fourteen years!

I'm just coming off a 3 day Milanese Bobbin Lace Workshop with Louise Colghan. It was fun and our projects were will take me a while but I will finish it! Mine will grow up to be a teapot.

Lots of activity within the Guild this month. I am looking forward to Pepper Place on November First, UAB on the seventh and of course the meeting on the eighth...that doesn't even count knitting and spinning groups that meet! 

See you all at the meeting!   

Karen Ford


November Meeting
Weaving Dimity for Counterpanes - Pat Donald

Saturday, November 8th
10:00am - noon
  St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church
2061 Patton Chapel Rd
Birmingham, AL  (205) 822-4480


At the guild’s November meeting on Saturday, November 8, guild member and expert weaver Pat Donald will present a program on weaving dimity, which is an effect in weaving that came into use in the 1850’s, and can be found in traditional counterpanes.  Pat will introduce the principles of weaving dimity in 3- and 6-harness looms, and share pictures of counterpanes, drafts collected from published and unpublished manuscripts from a variety of weavers.  Pat will also have samples of dimity to display and discuss, and she will have copies of Chatahootchie Coverlets for sale for $5.  Please join us for this fascinating program.

Interesting Fiber Items to Read and Check Out...

       WARRENSBURG, Mo.  -  'A Missouri runner who knitted his way into the record books is preparing for the New York City Marathon. David Babcock secured the Guinness Word Record last year for knitting a scarf that measured just more than 12 feet long during the 5 hours and 48 minutes it took him to run the Kansas City Marathon. The University of Central Missouri associate professor of art and design will face an extra challenge Sunday during the New York race.
The university says that because of tight security in New York, Babcock can't use traditional knitting needles and will have to use a finger-knitting technique. He got a chance to practice the technique during a recent half marathon in Kansas City.'
Babcock uses his unusual skill to raise awareness about Alzheimer's disease.  To read more about how Babcock got started, check out this NY Times article -
From Susie - as I walked into the house where I was 'Halloween' sitting, I saw this incredible piece of art and wanted to share it with all of you. (Plus would love one for myself!) Last month, we had a story about a woman who knits with glass, now here is an artist who weaves with glass.
Laura Dura - Wool felted bags out of Navajo-Churro wool, Taos, NM.

Meet Maggie Joe (aka Magnolia), Susie Strauss's adopted Musk Ox living at the Musk Ox Farm in Palmer, AS -
The latest news about Maggie - 'on September 27th our fall-born calf, Magnolia, celebrated her first birthday. Maggie, as she is known at the farm, has really grown in to a sweet and docile animal. She never shed her baby qiviut until spring and Maggie’s fiber tested near the top of the list with a micron count of 13. Maggie has also captured the hearts of many of our donors and currently is the most adopted animal in the herd.'
For more information about the Musk Ox Farm or to adopt your own Musk Ox, go to

It's Fall and Time for Fall Art Shows and Classes
Mark Your Calendars

November 8-9th:  The 42nd ADC Fine Crafts Show and Sale. 10am - 5 pm both days at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Featuring our fellow Guild members:
  • Jenny Gorman - Booth 28 Main Room (weaving)
  • Barbara Mitchell - Booth 21 Main Room (quilting)
  • Susie Strauss - Booth 4 Hallway at entrance to Gerlach Room (weaving)
  • Janice Weinstein - Booth 32 Hodges Room (knitting)

John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown, NC: Our Ruth Truett will be teaching 'Weaving in Shaker Tradition', November 16-22nd.
"The costume and household textiles of the Shakers were not so different from the general American population of the early 1900s. They were special because of the spiritual component of the life and works of the committed people who wove and used them. We will reproduce plain weave and twill samples for a variety of their household items, including chair seats and backs. Beginner and continuing weavers are welcome."

(send Susie announcements of upcoming shows with or without GBFG participants)

   Start thinking about the Guild's December Gift Exchange!

Our Holiday Lunch will be held at Mary Kaiser’s house on December 13th.  Our gift exchange this year is “gadgets.”  Wrap up your favorite little tools or fiber gadgets (limit is $15), and bring them to the party to exchange.

         Study Groups Meet Monthly

  • Spinning Study Group:  4th Wednesday of the month from 10 am to 2 pm at St. Peter’s Church in Hoover.  Please check out the GBFG Blog  for cancellations or schedule changes.
  • Nancy Clemmons is interested in sharing her love of tatting with others by teaching one or more in her home. Please contact her if you are interested.
  • More groups may meet in the future.  Watch the newsletter for more information and let a board member know if you are interested in a study group.

Newsletter News...
Each month, I am planning to have items coming from YOU, our Guild members. These will include short book reviews related to any fiber art; a tip you have discovered and used that make your fiber art a little bit easier to execute; any fiber related articles; and a fiber question you would love answers or suggestions from other guild members. Please send your ideas, suggestions, book recommendations, questions to me (Susie Strauss) by the 20th of the month to go into the following month's newsletter.
Email me at and put GBFG Newsletter in the subject line.


Greater Birmingham Fiber Guild
The Greater Birmingham Fiber Guild is comprised of individuals dedicated to the dissemination and preservation of fiber arts.  Meetings are the second Saturday of the month, 10:00-12:00 (no meeting in July). Visitors are welcome.  The Guild offers programs almost monthly, focused workshops several times a year, and equipment rental (see below). 
 2014 Officers and Board 
Karen Ford – President
Mary Kaiser – Program
Debbie Scott – Workshops
Emily Levitan - Membership
Nancy Lavender – Treasurer
Janice Weinstein - Secretary
Mary Spanos – Website
Susie Strauss - Newsletter
Janelle Zorko Schultz - Past President


Rental of Guild Equipment & Materials

The Guild has available, for rental to members, the following:
There will be a $30 deposit per DVD (Lucy Neatby) and $100 deposit for the drum carder. Deposit for Laura Fry's materials still to be determined.
The rental fee for all items is $5 per month rented.
Equipment can only be checked out at Fiber Guild monthly meetings and a check-out list will be posted inside the door of the cabinet. Deposit checks will be held by Nancy Lavender, treasurer, until returned in original condition.
Copyright © 2014 Greater Birmingham Fiber Guild, All rights reserved. 

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