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Ely Folk School

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in Fabric, Knitting, Sewing, Weaving, Clothing

Weaving on an Inkle Loom


with Diane Thomson

Calendar Aug 21, 2021 at 9 am

Saturday, August 21, 2021
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Tuition: $85  Materials: $30

An inkle loom is a simple loom that has been around a long time. It is fast to set up and easy to learn to weave on. With this type of loom, you can create beautiful bands, ribbons, and trims. In this class you will learn about the different types of inkle looms, how to set one up and the materials used for weaving. During the morning portion of the class, you will learn the basics and weave a short length of band. After a lunch break, we will spend the afternoon learning to design your own band and weave a longer length. Leave class with a key fob made from your band and ideas of what to do with your bands!

Handouts on building a loom and list of references for more about inkle looms is included. Inkle looms are also available for rent from the Ely Folk School on a weekly basis.

About the Instructor: Diane Thomson has taught previously at several yarn shops in the Twin Cities and at the Ely Folk School. She also currently offers knitting classes at Sisu Designs Yarn Shop in Ely.

Diane enjoys many of the fiber arts and learned to weave in high school. She rediscovered weaving in 1985 when she purchased her first loom. She spent most of her weaving time on rag rugs until the 90’s when she focused on spinning and knitting. She has taught classes in spinning and intricate Latvian and Norwegian knitting at the Folk School. Diane says, “Since retiring to Ely, I am hoping to spend more time weaving.”


Introduction to Tapestry Weaving


with Laura Berlage

Calendar Sep 12, 2021 at 2 pm, runs for 6 weeks

Sundays, September 12 - October 17,  2021
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Tuition: $144   Materials: $95  Shipping: $20

This course takes places over six consecutive Sunday afternoons. 

Curious about how tapestries are made and ready to try your hand at pictorial weaving? This most ancient form of textile creation is rich with history and invitation for creative expression.

Master weaver Laura Berlage will take you on a multi-week journey into the magical world of tapestry, where you will learn to transform warp and weft into a peaceful sunset landscape, measuring approximately 10x10 inches. Starting with a simple frame loom, focus will be given to establishing good tapestry technique and learning the process for horizontal and angled forms—beginning with foundational geometrics and building into more naturalistic forms. Fundamentals of cartoon creation and shading will also be covered. Unlock the mystery of how tapestry is made and add these skills to your expressions in fiber.

Join us for this welcoming online class! This class is beginner friendly, though please note that repetitive beating on the textile with the hand comb may cause aggravation of arthritis. 

The materials kit includes a frame loom plus stick shed dowel, ready to assemble; 2 large eye tatting needles; wool yarn for the project; wand comb/beater; spool of cotton warp; copy of the cartoon; and a handout with links to pre-recorded auxiliary tutorials. The student will need to provide for themselves good light; 2-3 tapestry needles; 2 binder clips; and a pair of sharp scissors. 

About the Instructor: Laura Berlage is a contemporary Renaissance woman living and working on her family’s century-old homestead farm outside Hayward, WI. From fiber arts to creative writing, music to storytelling, she never tires of the magic of transforming idea into form and overlapping narrative and visual. Laura also loves working with the many and beautiful natural materials from her farm—especially the wool from her sheep. Laura began her devotion to tapestry at age 13, studying 5 ½ years with master tapestry weaver Fran Potter before completing her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College in 2011.  She continues her lifelong passion for learning with engaged, hands-on teaching for small groups to encourage creativity, imagination, and expression.

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