It’s almost Spring, and new projects beckon! We’ve had amazing guild meetings lately, where show-and-tell is a program in itself, full of stories, suggestions, inspiration, and so many beautiful fiber works to look at, touch, and remember. I’ve returned this month to repeat a knitting project from 24 years ago, when I was pregnant with my daughter Anna who is now a media maven in Brooklyn. At that time, I was new to Birmingham, and hadn’t joined the guild or even found a yarn shop. I was an avid Threads reader, and I found a pattern for a traditional Shetland shawl. Sending away for some white baby yarn and the pattern brochure, I set forth on the shawl and I was proud, a year later, to wrap it around my new baby on her christening. Later, inevitably, I felted the shawl in the wash, but I kept the pattern and its memories. This past Christmas, my niece announced she’s expecting her first baby in late July, so I found some beautiful superwash lace-weight yarn and started on the Shetland shawl. Do I have the same knitting chops at 62 that I had at 37? Only time will tell, but it’s been wonderful to re-visit those peaceful months when I was knitting in expectation, and it’s lovely to feel that same hope again.
I hope to see all of you at our new location at the Hoover Church of Christ on Saturday, March 12. We are extending the meeting time so that we can do show and tell and have a program. Bring a lunch—you can use the refrigerator, we’ll have plenty of coffee, and we can spread out and get to know each other!
March Program Knitting "Outside the Box" March 12 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Hoover Church of Christ
The March Guild meeting will be “Knitting OUTSIDE the Box: creativity exercises for fiberistas”. The basic idea is to explore new materials and stitches as a way to get our creativity flowing. We will divide up into tables for exercises and discussions. For anyone who doesn’t knit but would like to learn, we will also have a table for beginners. EVERYONE welcome, knitter or not!! Remember we will be at our new location at the Hoover Church of Christ. Address is 3248 Lorna Rd, B’ham, 35216. Please park in the large parking lot behind the building. There is a set of double doors under a drive thru carport. Enter through these back doors. Someone should be there to direct you. We are also going to extend our meeting time frame to accommodate our fantastic growth! We will spend 10am to 12pm on announcements and Show and Tell, so bring your most recent FO or WIP to show off!! Then there will be a lunch break from 12-12:45. Feel free to bring a lunch; there is a refrigerator/microwave for our use. You are also welcome to go out to eat or to bring a lunch back. Lunch will be followed by our program from 12:45 to 2pm!
Carrying on the theme of containers from the holiday gift exchange into the new year, the first guild project for 2016 on Ravelry will be to "weave a bag on a box" using Sarah Swett's booklet of the same title.
Several things appealed to me about this project: we all have cardboard boxes around, or can get one easily enough (moderately sized, with flaps). Most of us have leftover yarns at hand: any strong yarn can be warp, anything can be weft (yarn of any size, roving, fabric strips…) We can play with color and texture! Stripes! Tapestry techniques! Our imaginations can roam freely; run rampant even!
Sarah sent us some photos of her bags for inspiration.
Go ahead and order your booklet from Sarah Swett's Etsy shop for $10. We will "officially" start the project at the February guild meeting. If you get a head start, bring your bag-in-progress to the meeting to show off!
Elizabeth Young and Mary Spanos are the workshop/event chair people this year and are excited about the possibilities that are available for us to pursue. They’d really like to hear from everyone in the guild so they can organize the best events and teachers so you can do more and learn more about the things that interest you most!
To read more about this and to share your thoughts, see the "GBFG Workshops and Events!" discussion thread on the guild's Ravelry forum
GBFG members (and any other readers), I'd like to post news on the blog about shows you are participating in or other events you think would be of interest to fiber artists and crafters in the Birmingham area. Please send me information through blog comments, Facebook, Ravelry (emmybess) or email. Photos of your work would also be great. Thank you! Emily
Interesting Fiber Items to Read and Check Out...
The Frayed Knot in Savannah, GA, will host an event featuring all sorts of fiber arts in silk. Check it out at www.thefrayedknotsav.com Click on events and Silk Soiree.
The Guild on the Web
Between newsletters and meetings, keep up with the guild on the web at:
If you don't want to miss new posts to the guild blog, you can choose to receive new posts by email. Go to the blog and look for "Follow by Email" on the right hand side of the page. Type your email address in the window and click "Submit." If you want to have something posted on the blog, send it firstname.lastname@example.org. You can post to the guild's Facebook page yourself! Emily shares information and posts that she receives on the guild's Facebook group page and keep Facebook users up to date on what is going on in the guild. Ravelry isn't just for knitters anymore. Crocheters, weavers, and spinners all upload photos, project information, and patterns. Kathryn is managing the GBFG group and has posted helpful information on participating in the Ravelry guild group on the blog, find it at http://greaterbirminghamfiberguild.blogspot.com/2015/04/gbfg-on-ravelry.html
Because our membership has grown so much, it was decided by the Board that having a membership form would be a good idea. This is so we can keep track of all our members to make sure you receive the newsletter and other communications. It will also give us an idea of what fiber arts the members are interested in so we can plan workshops and programs accordingly . Please submit the form with your check when you renew your membership for 2016. These need to be mailed to the GBFG address or give to Nancy Lavender at the meetings. The new membership year starts in January 2016 but you may submit this before then if you wish. After March, the newsletter will only be sent to current members.
Are there any programs or workshops you would like to give?
Are there any programs or workshops you would like take?
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.
Join us for First Friday Spinning Study at Jen Lackey's house. We meet around 6pm. Feel free to email Jennifer for directions and parking information.
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 (Deborah Kattus ) by the 20th of the month to go into the following month's newsletter.
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).
2016 Officers and Board
Mary Kaiser – President Jennifer Lackey – Program Elizabeth Young/ Mary Spanos – Workshops Janna Ford - Membership Nancy Lavender – Treasurer Jan McMahon - Secretary Emily Levitan – Website Deborah Kattus - Newsletter Karen Ford - 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.