Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Braiding at the Hub

On Saturday I had the great pleasure of attending a braiding course led by acclaimed braiding guru, Jennie Parry.  The one day course was held at the Hub in Sleaford, Lincolnshire.  It was the first time I had been to the centre which is our National Centre for Crafts.  The centre is housed in a renovated warehouse and over four floors has spaces for the display of contemporary craft as well as education spaces and of course, a shop and cafe. 

The course was an introduction to creating braids and bands.  We rapidly learnt techniques in plaiting and weaving on a donkey loom (inspired by the Akha bow loom). It was satisfying to build up a selection of a samples and notes to facilitate further exploration of the techniques at home.  I'm particularly looking forward to going on to embellish the braids with buttons, beads and tassels. 

My favourite technique was creating a braid on a card (Kumihimo).  This technique required a bit less brain power and had endless opportunities for experimenting with different threads.  We had friends to lunch on Sunday and I thought I could introduce their eight year old daughter to the technique.  Instead, I ended up running a workshop for the parents who were most impressed with their creations!

Jennie Parry was instrumental in setting up the Braid Society and her knowledge and enthusaism were impressive.  It was a real treat to be able to see and handle her collection of braids. There's a link here to have a go at plaiting.

I finished the day with a sense of satisfaction at having learnt so much and been given the information to create more.  I also wanted to book the first plain to India, Oman or Thailand and immerse myself in some of the techniques of  traditional textiles.  I realised what a vast array of textile techniques there are around the planet and what a rich journey a life in textiles is.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...