Meeting this week, July 18th

Our monthly meeting will be moved to this Friday, July 18th, due to a scheduling conflict with the library. Please join us for some spinning fun.

Take a spin at Sunny Meade Alpacas

[Updated to fix link!] Calling all spinners! Sunny Meade Alpacas, located in Swanton, OH, is having a handspinning event, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. In the morning, by a lottery draw, each participating spinner will receive a 2 oz. bag of fleece of one of the alpacas on the farm. The participants will then card and spin the fiber into a finished skein for judging later in the day. Prizes will be awarded to the top handspun skeins. One of the best parts of the event is that you’ll be sitting amongst the alpacas in the pasture while you are spinning their fleece!

Cost: $35 (Box Subway lunch and beverage is included.)

Email or post to the Sunny Meade Alpacas Facebook page for an entry form. Register now, pasture space is limited.

Meeting starts late this Friday, April 25th

We’re meeting this Friday at 11:30 am due to room availability. See you soon!

Meeting a tad late this Friday, January 24th

We’re meeting this Friday at 11:30 am due to room availability and will need to be out of the room by 3 pm for the next group. And look, 2014 dates have been posted, so you can mark your calendars to join us and not miss a minute of the fun. See you there.

October meeting cancelled

The October trip to Elly Rose’s farm has been cancelled. No meeting is scheduled for October. If you would like to coordinate an informal meeting, please feel free to communicate in the comments section of this post. You can subscribe to comments to follow that conversation by clicking the box below.

Important! Change in venue for October 25th meeting

Our usual library location is not available this month, so member Elly Rose is kindly opening her farm for a day of outdoor fun and adventure. Natural dyeing and good times will ensue. Contact Elly directly for directions, timing, and coordinating any food contributions, and anticipate about a two-hour drive from the Cleveland Heights area. Overnight accommodations are possible if you want the full camping (not necessarily outdoors) experience. See you there!

July meeting this Friday, 7/26

Will you join us at the Orange Public Library this Friday for our regular monthly meeting? Arrive at 9:30 am (or whenever you like) and stay until 3:00 pm (or whenever you feel ready to leave). Bring a brown bag lunch if the mood strikes you or if you think you’ll be hungry watching other people eat midday.

And don’t forget to bring your dye day show and tell so that we can ooh and aah over it. We hope to see you there!

Dye day this month, Friday, June 28th

The event you’ve been waiting for all year is soon to be here: the annual dye day at Jean’s house. Come get your color fix when the festivities begin at 9:00 am. The traditional midday potluck lunch will happen when we get hungry, so please bring a dish to share. Dessert, salad, lunch item, whatever. The day will go until we decide we’re done, as usual.

Natural dyes, including indigo, will be available, and Jean procured some Procion MX dyes that go with the techniques used in Color by Accident. The dye colors correspond with different seasons of the year. Remember to soak your yarn or textiles ahead of time and to treat them with alum if you want to use natural dyes. Instructions for how to do that can be found here.


Meeting this Friday, 5/24, with special guest Carol James

Don’t forget our exciting program at the Orange Public Library this Friday– Carol James visits to show us her replica of the George Washington battle sash that’s on its way to Mt. Vernon. Meeting for members begins at 9:30 am or whenever people arrive (noon for guests) and lasts until 3:00 pm or whenever people leave. We hope to see you there!

Carol James to visit May meeting with Revolutionary War battle sash

We have an exciting program this month! Carol James, who many of us were delighted to meet when she was in town last year teaching sprang, will be visiting with a very special show-and-tell.

Carol is the author of Finger Weaving Untangled and Sprang Unsprung, and is the acknowledged North American expert in this almost forgotten fiber technique. Thanks to funding from the Winnipeg Arts Council, she has faithfully reproduced the sash George Washington wore into battle and left to the ladies of Mount Vernon.

Information available from George Washington’s Mount Vernon states:

At the Battle of the Monongahela on July 9, 1755, every officer on Major General Edward Braddock’s staff was injured or killed, with the exception of his aide-de-camp, George Washington. Braddock also sustained a fatal wound and is said to have been carried from the field in this, his officer’s sash. Washington alone brought order to the fray, forming a rear guard to enable retreat. Family tradition maintains that Braddock presented the sash to Washington prior to his death four days later.

Braddock presenting the sash to Washington meant he was entrusting the troops to Washington. The date on this sash is 1709.

George Washington's battle sash, replica

Replica of George Washington’s battle sash

It seems that this Major General Edward Braddock was Edward Braddock, Jr. His father, Edward Braddock, Sr., graduated from military academy in 1709. The battle sash was passed from father to son to Washington. Until Washington had his own designed and created, he wore this blood red battle sash across his chest.

As generals had done for generations, the netting was worked using a technique called sprang. Designed for a quick and efficient removal of it’s wearer should he fall in battle; the sash was able to spread and support the fallen with strong grips all around for the surest grasp to transport the not quite dead to the nearest medical assistance.

The original sash is old, fragile, and in special storage at Mount Vernon where it is never to be touched. Carol’s sash is currently on an international tour and on its way to Mount Vernon. It will be shown in select venues in Canada and the United States. Stops in Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio, and New York are scheduled on the way to its new home in Virginia.

Stop in and see the Ohio debut of this beautiful and historically significant item at our Friday, May 24th, meeting at the Orange Public Library. Join us for the day starting at 12:00 pm with a brown bag lunch. Viewing from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Contact Victoria at for more details or just drop in to view this amazing recreation of a piece of American history.