Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Durham Guild Open Weaving Day

The Durham Guild of Spinning Weaving and Dyeing had their Open Weaving Day on Saturday 15th October 2016 at St Oswald's Institute on Church Road in Durham City.

Here is a link to the Guild diary for 2016  http://www.durhamguild.com/Diary2015.htm_24.htm

Guild members were weaving using a variety of techniques and visitors encouraged to have a go at any skill they wish to try. Braiding, inkle loom weaving, table loom weaving, Kumihimo - there are so many techniques.

Everything was set up before we opened and there was a lovely display of work: finished work, work in progress and a variety of methods of weaving.
One side of the hall looking very colourful.

I took some ready warped rigid heddles so that visitors could try band weaving using a backstrap.

My Swedish band loom was warped so that visitors could weave a friendship bracelet. I used 16/2 cotton used double so that the band is 1.6 cm in width. The weft is black cottolin. I put on a very long warp so that anyone who  wove could cut off their piece to take home.  This proved very popular and all the warp was used.

My Swedish band loom set up with a long warp
I was pleased that we did have so many visitors who were interested and the warp was nearly finished by the end of the day.  One surprising visitor was the photographer from the local newspaper the Northern Echo. We had all just stopped for lunch but I was posed for a photograph with my loom.

I bought a lovely little bow loom at Tacoma to use on this weaving open day for the Durham Guild. Someone immediately wanted to try and became very proficient in weaving with the little beads as embellishment.  I am going to warp it up and take it along to the next Guild meeting as it is such a draw, easy to make and so easy to use.

The weaving is finished. 
A friendship bracelet.

Many Guild members had brought work to do and looms for visitors to try.

Sue is weaving an interesting tapestry.

The lettering is lovely.
She is using a Roman inscription.

There is a  subtle use of natural colours.

Douglas brought his trusty table loom and is in the process of warping it with lovely colours to make another tartan.
A tartan warp.
The wonderful Ashford Knitters loom was also being used and showing how very versatile this simple loom can be. It is such a comfortable weaving position.
lacy weaving on the Knitters Loom.

The Louet table loom was there with some experimental weaving by Norma.

Eight shaft table loom 
There was a small display of bookmarks from the National Exhibition.  Every Guild could submit bookmarks and it is a great opportunity for a variety of crafts to display their skills in miniature.

Inkle looms were ready warped for hands on experience of weaving.  Ann brought along two inkle looms and some portable kumihimo equipment. All fueled by mugs of tea!

Inkle looms ready to try and simple portable kumihimo equipment brought by Ann.

There were lots of examples of finished pieces of weaving for visitors to handle.

Note the Navajo spindle and expertly made inkle loom.

And of course, for those members who do not weave, there was the spinners corner.

Busy bee corner.

My display of Woven Bands from around the Baltic.

I brought along my display which shows the different woven bands from around the Baltic.  The stunning wooden heddle which I am using at the moment was made by Gunnar Karro from Estonia. I asked him to make a motif from the White Horse in Uffington. He sells his wares on Etsy and I can recommend the quality of his products.

The curved shuttle has a matching motif to the heddle and there is an elegant stand for them both. I wove a patterned band in cotton and made it into a guitar strap which is shown next to the heddle. It has nine pattern threads.

It was a very busy day and we did have some people who have joined the Guild as a result.

Susan J Foulkes November 2017


  1. Looks wonderful! I wish I could have been there.

  2. I agree with Barbara! I would especially love to see your exhibit showing the various Baltic region patterns!


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