PVCC Registration for Fabric Painting and Weaving on a Rigid Heddle Loom

21 06 2011

Now that PVCC (Piedmont Virginia Community College) registration for the fall has begun, I would like to let the world know that I am offering two courses there.

One is weaving on a rigid heddle loom. This is the simplest loom, relatively cheap, easy to set up, easy to use, portable, an excellent starting point for weaving. It is also very versatile. It is possible to use a rigid heddle loom to do a wide variety of fabrics including some lace weaves. In my course, I will teach the students to warp the loom and to weave a variety of fabrics. I will also teach how to plan fabrics, some of which will change drastically when washed after weaving. Students might be interested to know that Piedmont also owns two four-harness floor looms, so it will be possible to move beyond the rigid heddle to more complicated weaves. The cost of the class will include a loom to be used in the class and sold back to me when the class is over if you decide not to keep it.

I am also offering a course in painting on fabric. We will be using fabric paints and resists to create a variety of fabric designs, some of which will very much resemble batiks. To see some samples of my work, you should look at previous pages on this blog, on ArtFire at PockTTorian Textile, or on the Fabric Painting page of this blog. All materials will be provided aside from a stretcher frame.

I invite anyone intersted in learning either of these to contact me. If you are unavailable to take either course at Piedmont, private lessons can be arranged.


I Am Waiting

25 01 2010

It won’t be long now. Maybe just a couple days, and I will hear about the grant and know whether there might be the possibility of leaving the legacy of Pocktorian Textiles and all its potential behind me.

In any case, there will be enough time to complete the four patterns and sample items for the line. There will be enough time to teach one more person to weave and one more person to sew. Perhaps there will be time to learn to spin.

There will be enough time to pack and to plan, and then two months more in limbo, because the place I will live in the US will not be available until the end of May.

Perhaps by that time, there will be a new small business in the US named Pocktorian Textiles because of the place where I formed the idea of what I want to do and why.

Archaic textile skills? Ha!

My Business Model is Evolving

19 08 2009

Oh I still have every intention of reviving Norwich’s textile industry in a hi-tech cottage textile industry kind of way. My vision of what I’m building up to never changes, but my ideas of how I might get there, and my ideas of what I’m going to be doing with my time to bring in a living seem to be evolving in front of my eyes.

I’m not really surprised. One problem I’ve always had was with market research. Basically, the only way to know which of the things you want to offer people will actually spend money on is to put your offers out there and see what happens.

So far, I’ve found out that there’s apparently not much demand for bespoke interior textiles locally. At least I haven’t been able to locate it. Nor was there much demand for my handmade goods from the people who came into the Textile Centre, though at least one other person in the Centre seemed to be doing pretty well.

But I’m getting weaving students. And weaving and teaching weaving¬†are probably the things I like doing the best of all the things I know how to do. Sometimes, the world decides to cooperate with you.

Considering the state of the UK’s textile industry, it would seem that setting myself the task of reviving it would be an unlikely career plan. But slow but surely, it just might be working.

So I’m not saying I’d turn down a commission of some sort. I’m just saying it begins to look like I’ll be doing a good deal of teaching (which pleases me mightily since I highly value all these handskills I have and it would be a pity not to pass them on) and some making of the really fine things I want to make (I’ve got a shadow-weave chenille scarf on the loom just now.) and about ten other ideas for how I might be able to bring in a little cash from one way or another.

And, recently, I’m really enjoying my life.

(All the sunshine we’ve had this summer has something to do with it. I make sure I get my hour in the sun every day there’s enough sun and heat for that. But the other things I’m doing have a lot to do with it too.)