Workshops/Study Groups

September 30, 2017–Saori Weaving Workshop

Impressions from Nancy

Dawn Hummer

Our workshop leader, Dawn Hummer

When Deborah and I arrived we saw that Dawn Hummer had transformed our classroom with her stash. She had put feathers, paper, yarn, wood flowers and twigs all around the perimeter of the room and had displayed several of her Soari projects on one table.  She was also weaving a lovely piece of her Saori weaving. We all introduced ourselves, after which she explained the principles of Soari weaving to us.

And then we began to weave.

What a wonderful experience! We had music in the background and some conversation as our projects moved toward completion. This was the first time that Mary Bryson had woven.

We broke for lunch at 12:30 p.m. In the afternoon Dawn showed us techniques that added texture and dimension to our projects. We finished by 4:00 p.m. and everyone was pleased with what they had woven in the workshop. 

Please click on the link to the Saori Workshop Pictures to see the wonderful pieces the workshop participants created. In order to see the captions, run your mouse across the bottom of the pictures–sorry about that. It’s a WordPress thing!

Update on the Saori Workshop from Sarah

Here comes a quick overview of all the pertinent information for the Workshop:

It will start at 9:30 on Saturday, September 30 in the Horticultural Visitors Center classroom on the Sandhills Community College campus.

The cost will be $35.00 for members and $50.00 for non-members.

Bring a lunch. Sarah will bring lunch for Dawn.

Read the e-mail from Dawn that Sarah sent out in August for warping instructions and details of what to bring. The e-mail includes Sarah’s phone number in case you need help warping.

Dawn will bring materials for sale. Sarah will bring yarn/material options for all to use.

Let Sarah know soon whether you want to make a wall hanging or a table runner, so she can tell Dawn how many of each.

Also tell Sarah as soon as possible if you want to rent a loom from Dawn. Loom rental is $25.00.

Call or e-mail Sarah with any question.

September 30, 2017: Saori Workshop

Dawn Hummer

Our workshop leader, Dawn Hummer

Please mark your calendars for a one-day workshop on Saturday, September 30th. We will explore a completely different concept of weaving called Saori.

Saori is a way to free up your creativity, designing as you weave and even embracing your mistakes (they will become design elements). You can toss out all the rules and restrictions of traditional weaving. You will create on the fly: no more planning, no more endless worksheets and no more thinking inside the box.

Here is a lovely quote from the Saori website that captures the very essence of Saori. “We don’t weave only a cloth, we weave our true self.”

To learn more about this fascinating approach to Saori weaving go to:

Our Saori Workshop Leader

Our workshop leader will be Dawn Hummer who recently moved to Chapel Hill from Austin, Texas.  An educator by profession and an artist by avocation, her passion is fiber. She has conducted workshops across a wide range of age groups and experience levels. Additionally, she has traveled extensively throughout Europe, South America and the Far East studying early industrial textile manufacturing.

The  Program

Before we get down to weaving Dawn will give us an overview of Saori’s philosophy, the looms that are used and a show us a brief video. Then, if we are allowed to, we could go out into the College’s gardens to forage for plants to add to our creations.

Then we weave.

Equipment and Supplies

Dawn will bring four Saori looms with her, which can be rented at a nominal price. But feel free to bring your own pre-warped loom. (More about warping instructions later—it all depends on the project the class chooses.) Your loom can be a rigid heddle loom, or a table or floor loom.

Bring your stash and anything you can forage.  If you don’t have a stash (lol), Dawn will bring some previously foraged materials and a variety of fiber that you can buy from her.

And let’s not forget all those tools and accessories that make living with your loom so much simpler!

And last but not least, bring a sandwich and drink for lunch. Is there anyone out there who would like to bake a plate of cookies for a mid-morning snack?

Some decisions are yet to be made: Dawn can either concentrate on the class creating a wall hanging or a table runner. Also the cost depends on the number of people that sign up. The more the merrier. We’ve never had a workshop yet that wasn’t a lot of fun!




November 4-6, 2016: Gamp Weave-In Weekend 

Laura and Betty weaving

Laura and Betty hard at it. Laura on the left wove a beautiful color gamp in muted blue/purple and aqua and Betty, a spectacular tea towel.

A little over a month ago we held our Gamp Weave-In Weekend. We got together on the first weekend in November and although not a big group, we were a lively one. There were six of us in all and between talking, joking and eating we actually got a lot of weaving done.

Not all of our projects were gamps, but that was okay too. The point of our Weave-In Weekend was to give us a chance to work together in a fabulously creative atmosphere away from all those everyday distractions we have to cope with at home.

And it worked–let’s do it again next year.






May 23td & 24th, 2015, Acadian Weaving Workshop

Melissa Weaver Dunning

Melissa Weaver Dunning

Please click on the link above to read all about the terrific workshop we had with Melissa Weaver Dunning this past weekend. Eleven of us learned an enormous amount about the Acadians and their weaving traditions. 

They have a rich, but troubled, history. There was a time when they could no longer rely on support from France and had to become self-sustaining. Thus, spinning and weaving became an essential part of their lives. Although mostly limited to looms with only two treadles, their creativity knew no bounds, and the textiles they produced were exquisite.

And for two glorious days, that’s what we explored.

A few of the many variations of Acadian Weaving we'll explore

A few of the many variations of Acadian Weaving we’ll explore

We learned a whole new weaving vocabulary such as couverture de marriage, à la planche, boutonne and cordonne. And then wove samples of each.

Weaving sessions were punctuated with lectures  and a slide show of Acadian textiles from various Canadian museums and private collections in Louisiana.

It was a memorable weekend of weaving, instruction and good friends, old and new. Thank you, Melissa.

 November 1st & 2nd, 2014, Doubleweave Workshop

Jennifer Moore

The Ball Gardens Visitors Center classroom at Sandhills Community College was once again transformed into the best-ever weaving studio as three Guild members moved their looms into the classroom and set them up for a weekend devoted to learning the basics of doubleweave. Our guide was Jennifer Moore’s Doubleweave book. She is the ultimate authority on doubleweave and a terrific teacher.

By 10:00 a.m. we were ready to get down to some serious learning and weaving. But it wasn’t all work. It turned out to be one of those lovely, relaxed workshops, punctuated by good conversation and great food. Thank you, Kate. You’ve raised the bar on Guild snacks!

In addition to learning the principles of doubleweave, everyone practiced a multitude of different techniques, including making tubes, two layers of cloth, double-width cloth, color and weave patterns, piqué, and quilting.

On Sunday we had almost finished working our way through the basics when the lights went out. There simply wasn’t enough light to do any more weaving so we decided to pack up and head home.  And, wouldn’t you know it, just as we started to load up the cars, the power came on again. However, we had completed 95% of the program, we had all learned a lot and done some serious weaving. It really was time to say our goodbyes. Well done everyone.

The Banner worked in doubleweave pick up

 Workshops in our past

During the past several years the Sandhills Weavers Guild has averaged approximately one workshop a year. Before we had a permanent home at Sandhills Community College, we held a couple of them in members’ homes. Now we hold them in a wonderfully lit classroom with all the amenities close at hand, including a kitchen. And best of all, no steps to negotiate with looms.

Sandhills Handweavers Guild fiber workshop study session

Thus far, we have conducted four workshops: The first was Tartan weaving taught by Marjorie Warren, a professional tartan weaver from Western North Carolina. That was followed by a Twills and Tweeds workshop and then a Huck workshop. And finally, last November we had another Tartan Workshop, again taught by Marjorie.

Workshops usually start on Friday evenings with participants moving their looms into the classroom. If time permits there is also an introductory talk. On Saturday and Sunday the workshops run from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Throughout the day weaving sessions are interspersed with lectures or media presentations. We bring our own sandwiches for lunch, and the coffee pot and kettle are always on, with plates of cookies and other delectables on the counter!