Every year I try to take a class or attend a conference on a fiber arts topic. This year I chose to attend the 2013 Northwest Weavers Conference, sponsored by Association of Northwest Weavers’ Guilds (ANWG).
I couldn’t budget (time off + money) for more than two half-day seminars, so I drove up to Bellingham very early Friday morning and planned to drive home Friday evening.
Vancouver Guild, IIRC
The sad thing about only taking two half-day seminars is that you are a second-class student. No conference bag, no woven nametag, no schwag. Not even a pen! Before I checked in at registration, I saw everyone with bags (including one very friendly woman who directed me to the registration building, thank you! you were so friendly and helpful) and I was looking forward to getting one. I was disappointed when I didn’t get one, just a folder and a plain old nametag on some yarn that gave me a rash (thankfully I had benadryl with me).
That’s a very minor point and I definitely paid less to attend the conference than people who took 3-day workshops, so it’s not unexpected. I was just disappointed. At least give me a cool zippered woven nametag!
The WWU campus was yarn-bombed by the Seattle Weavers’ Guild Yarn Stormers. It was cute and fun and fit with the campus.
After checking in Friday morning and before my first seminar, I hit the marketplace. I’ve been attending fiber arts shows with marketplaces for long enough now that I have a routine. In advance, I write a list of items I am looking for. I bring cash in the budget I have set rather than using a credit card. I try to hit the market before it gets super busy. I generally do a couple of passes before I buy anything. I try not to get overwhelmed (easily happens at big festivals like MD or Rhinebeck, less likely at smaller markets like ANWG Conference & Madrona).
At the Lunatic Fringe Yarns booth, I decided against buying a color gamp kit though it was on my list. I know I can always order one online. I did almost buy some hemp yarn to make the towels below though. I love them.
lunatic fringe hemp towels
Also on my list, the Glimåkra booth. I had sent them an email to see if I could pick up a few items to expand my Ideal to a 6S/8T. I visited their booth and they had some lovely samples as well. They also had a number of looms set up for testing out (Ideal, Julia, Susanna, Emilia). Joanne and Ed are as lovely in person as they are over email and the phone.
samples at the Glimakra booth
I also bought a couple of shuttles at the Bluster Bay Woodworks booth, including my first end feed shuttle and a double bobbin shuttle.
After my second seminar Friday afternoon, John Beard gave a presentation on Ravenstail weaving. It was fascinating.
Overall I had a good time, but I was exhausted from the minimal sleep and early morning drive, so I didn’t stick around as long as I’d liked. My seminars and instructors were good but I’ll talk about them separately.