Back from Conference

IMG_5392The SAORI Canada-US Conference and Post-Conference took place in Georgia over the last several days.  For those of us who have not yet had the pleasure of visiting Japan, it was an opportunity to finally meet Kenzo Jo, Akiko Jo, Misako, and so many of the wonderful Japanese instructors.  It was an opportunity for everyone to learn more about the SAORI philosophy, learn a few new tips and tricks, and to be acquainted with a community of SAORI weaving enthusiasts.  The Conference itself included several workshop sessions for individual selection – skills acquisition as well as business information for potential new studios.  The post-conference was a bit more structured and moved through a myriad of weaving techniques related to warp and weft manipulation and yarn structure.  From the photos above, there was also discussion about clothing construction, during which we all were able to see Misako work her magic with a piece of cloth and a mannequin.  Finally, there was the optional testing component.  This is something that I participated in and earned my Grade 3 (initial) testing.

As many of you are aware, conference is not only a chance for learning and camaraderie: we also get to salivate over all of the new and limited edition SAORI product!  Most years you can expect a limited edition ready-made and set of yarns.  Apparently, the theme was “red silk” because it was everywhere.  First, the Limited Edition Red Silk Ready-Made – 200 threads x 6m – $114photo 2

Next, the Limited Edition Red Silk Cone Set – 10 cones of varying grist and texture – $376photo 2

This year, there were also several new books released.  The first was a long awaited English version of the Beginners’ SAORI Clothing Design.  It has been
New Books reprinted from its original Japanese version to full English text and images.  It contains 12 patterns with limited sewing and cutting and is priced at $26.  Additionally, they also released an Intermediate SAORI Clothing Design pattern book.  This is a completely Japanese printing; however, like the Japanese pattern books before it, the diagrams are very clear and (for the most part) all-inclusive.  This book is a bit graduated in terms of level of difficulty.  It contains 9 patterns, some of which are skirts, dresses, and pants and is priced at $32.  Finally, there is a book that is part inspiration and part instruction.  It contains books, stuffed animals, slippers, and a myriad of other projects that are perfect for small pieces of cloth.  Within the section on bags and totes, there are step-by-step photographs describing finishing methods.  It is priced at $42.  All of these new items are available through our shop.  Either contact us direct with questions/ requests or visit our Etsy shop for expanded descriptions.

Hope to see everyone again at conference in 2 years!!!

 

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Summer News

This spring has been quite the whirlwind: we’ve been as far west as Seguin, Texas, and as far east (and north) as West Friendship, Maryland.  The studio has been aflutter with exhilarating colors, courtesy of Blazing Shuttles.  And, we’ve received notification of the honor of teaching at SAFF 2014.  Most notably, we have had the extreme pleasure of meeting weavers and SAORI enthusiasts from across the entire southern and southeast regions.  It has been a lot of fun getting to know everyone!

Summer is the time when things slow down a bit for us in South Louisiana.  The air gets heavy and we head indoors for a little rest from the heat and humidity.  But, that does not keep us from weaving or from receiving exciting new products from Japan.  So, here’s an exciting outline of these activities…

New classes on the schedule!  Saki Ori Weaving and Beginners’ Pattern Making Workshop.  You can read more about these and download registration forms from the “Workshops” section of our website.  Keep in mind that we always schedule individual and small group sessions.  Additionally, the first Thursday of every month is an open play day, the last Wednesday is a Spinning-oriented open studio, and every second Wednesday of every odd month (July upcoming) is a tapestry-focused open studio.

IMG_5195Recent Acquisitions!  SAORI has released multiple novelty sets that each center around a specific colorway.  We have several of these in the studio in the following colorways: blue, purple, black, grey, yellow, and brown.  Each set comes with 10 cones in varying textures and thicknesses.  These provide really wonderful free-style add-ins and have been released in limited quantities to the US market.  For more information and availability, please check out our limited edition listings on Etsy.

Back by Popular Demand! We can hardly keep the lucky box sets of Lame and Silk.  Each new set of lame contains 2 cones each of gold and silver.  Each new set of silk contains 2 cones each of variegated and solid.

We look forward to seeing you again in the studio or on the road.  For those of you traveling to SAFF in Fletcher, North Carolina, please stop by our booth.  In addition to the booth, this year we are also offering several free-style weaving taster classes during every day of the festival.  Registration opens July 1 on SAFF’s website.  Hope to see you there!

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Blazing Shuttles Weave & Dye Weekend

IMG_5112Last weekend, we welcomed Blazing Shuttles, aka Kathrin Weber, to our studio for a 3-day Weave and Dye Workshop.  On Friday, twelve weaving students were welcomed by this beautiful selection of warps – what a way to start your weekend!


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Kathrin then led all the students through three different methods of setting up their loom to achieve the effects of shifting, flipping, and windows, which is part of what makes her woven work so unique.  By then end of the first day, everyone was in various stages of setting up the loom and a few diligent students had even begun weaving.

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By the end of Day 2, everyone was weaving and some pieces had even come off of the loom

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The weavers all left the weaving workshop with a lot learned and completely inspired by the colors and ability to design at the loom.

Eager to learn more about Kathrin’s dyeing process, we were joined by 10 new students for the third day of the workshop.  The weather was gorgeous and the colors vibrant.  New and experienced dyers alike created some wonderful color combinations.

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Posted in Studio Likes, Studio News, Workshops

Maryland Sheep & Wool 2014

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2400 miles later and several hundred pounds lighter, we’ve arrived safely back from our first trip to Maryland Sheep and Wool.  The remaining items in the trailer have been unloaded and successfully re-organized into the studio.

What an exciting trip this was for us!  The studio has had a booth at several regional shows but this was our first time playing with the “big boys” at a national show.  The amount of foot traffic and the sheer number of booths is absolutely incredible!  Although I am well aware that there was a show ring, sheep sheering demonstrations, and a myriad of other activities, we really didn’t have much time to get out of the booth to observe it firsthand.  What I can share with you is our booth’s transformation from pristinely set up on Friday afternoon to bustling with activity, which continued through Sunday afternoon.

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For those of you who have never been to it, I highly recommend you put it on your “bucket list”!  We are definitely looking forward to this show again next year.

 

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English Translation Available – Beginners’ SAORI Clothing Design

Good news to announce!  SAORI has just released a text only English translation PDF for the Beginners’ SAORI Clothing Design.  It is now available from our studio.  We are working to get these distributed to everyone who has purchased from us; however, we mostly have records of the online sales only.  If you have purchased a book from us and have not received the translation, please let Jenny know so she may get it to you.

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Posted in Studio News