Excursion around parts of mid western NSW
Eight of us met at 8am on Wednesday May 9 and boarded our hire bus to head for Katoomba, and then on to Bathurst where we spent the night. Next morning on to the Adagio alpaca Mill at Orange, where we were given an interesting and informative tour of the mill. It is great to see small businesses starting up to process our Australian fibres in Australia.
Top left: setting off. Top right: The Adagio mill in Orange
Lower left: Lunch in Molong. Lower right: We had a Show and Tell of our purchases every evening.
Then we went to Molong for lunch. What a great little town. So many interesting places to visit.
Dubbo was our second night, and we visited the observatory there, just after dark. The balmy weather we had enjoyed thus far suddenly disappeared. Next morning we went to the local show, to see what they have in their spinning and weaving sections - a small fraction of what we show at the Morisset Show!
Then off to Rylestone for lunch and a wander around that pretty town, before we all descended on the Convent and Chapel Wool shop. What a feast of fibre. I dont think any of us left there without adding to our stash.
Back to Mudgee for the night, and after a look through the great craft gallery at the Old Mudgee Railway station, we ambled back home, taking a lunch break at Merriwa.
On May 1, we did a mini-workshop on stick weaving. A dozen or so members gathered their stick and some rug wool and began weaving.
Lynette was a successful first prize winner with her felted scarf at the Royal Easter Show, and Jean won first prize for her lace knitted handspun scarf at the Newcastle show.
Below: Lynette's felted scarf. and Right Jean's handspun lace knitted scarf.
On April 3 and 10, Rod Byatt visited and taught members how to make temari balls. Much fun was had by all participants.
Below: Some of the groups completed temari balls
On March 13 we took a convoy of cars and visited Feltfine at Jilliby. Clare had a wonderful range of fibres and yarns for us to browse, and of course, buy. It is always fun being able to replenish your stash!
Our Annual General Meeting was held on March 6. Our new President is Helene, and Carol is Vice-President. Lorraine remains as Secretary, and Beryl as Treasurer. Other committee members include Gill, Mwyf, Gloria, Lorelle, Francine, and Anne Mac.
The Encouragement Award this year was awarded to Marge. A member of our group for over 30 years, she has been a great source of advice and support to many of our members.
Left: Gill presenting the Encouragement Award to Marge.
At the Morisset Show we were given a fleece by the people who were demonstrating shearing. On Tuesday Feb 27, some of our members skirted the fleece, ready for us to work with in the near future.
On February 20th, we held a suprise birthday luncehon for one of our life members, who has just turned 95. Marge is loved and admired by us all, as she has so much to offer the group. We had a great time helping her celebrate. Ann S made a delicious cake, and decorated it with woolly sheep and some knitting. Others brought in plates of delicious finger food to share.
February 6: We all brought in our items to exhibit in the local Morisset Show the following weekend. The items were all catalogued, and readied for judging and displaying.
Friday 9th: Several members, and our judge braved the heat to facilitate the judging and then set up the display in the Pavilion. We had a variety of colourful and interesting items on show.
The Geraldine McCulloch Award, the prize for the best in our Section went to Lorelle for her creative felted vessel attached to a kelp stalk.
The Hazel Cashman Award for creative use of colour and or texture went to Lyn Abbott for her blue mohair buttoned
There were lots of visitors to our display over the two days of the Show. We had our Piccolo Loom available for people to try, and it proved very popular, especially with children, and a few more senior people who had always wanted to try their hand at weaving.
We returned to our new premises on January 9. Numbers were a bit low the first couple of weeks, as quite a few members were away on holidays. Unfortunately we have found the Showground is unable to offer us storage for our equipment at this stage, and it remains in a storage lock-up in the Industrial Estate. We are able to use a couple of locked cupboards in the meeting room, and these are currently being modified to take most of our books and other everyday equipment.
The Spinning Study group met on January 23rd, and the Weaving Group on January 30th.
Christmas Lunch: Despite the upheaval of moving, we all relaxed at the TreeTops restaurant, Martinsville on Tuesday December 9, and enjoyed a scrumptious lunch and end of year celebration.
A BIG Move
After 33 years meeting at the Morisset Hall in Yambo Street, ongoing issues created between the local Council and the Hall management committee we have been forced to move. Fortunately we have found a comfortable new home at the Showground in Ourimbah St Morisset, and will have our first meeting there on Tuesday December 5.
For members who do not know the location, you turn off Dora Street at the Roundabout near McDonalds. Drive ahead into the Showground. The road turns left toward the pavilions. There is a covered way between the pavilions (on your left) and the meeting room (on your right.)
Our equipment and library from the storeroom at the Morisset hall have been temporarily placed in storage, and will be retrieved and moved to our new storage area at the Showground when we resume our meetings on January 9, 2018.
Other than Maccas at the end of Ourimbah Street, there are no local eating places within walking distance, so we suggest you bring your lunch with you if you stay to lunch, or pop out and buy some take-away locally.
Rod Byatt visited us for the afternoon on November 7, to teach us how to do basic braiding. He brought enough foam discs for a dozen of us to work with, and a range of colours in 4 ply cotton. All the participants made a 2 colour braid for their keys, or the handle of their scissors. We are looking forward to having Rod back some time next year for a full day workshop teaching us more complex braiding patterns.
Rod also brought a variety of Temari Balls to show us. He us doing a workshop at the NSW Guild Summer School in January teaching people how to make Temari Balls.
The instructor for our Mini-workshop on November 7 was Helene, showing us all how to do Fair-Isle knitting. We were fascinated at how easy it was to create complex multi-colour patterns.
Right: Tracey celebrated a Big O birthday in late October, and we all helped her celebrate, sharing a great cake made by Ann S.
Below: Lorelle attended a felting workshop held south of Sydney. She produced two beautiful vessels.
Lynette recently extended her range of felting techniques by attending a workshop in Geelong on Eco Printing. Eco printing - felt to print or print to felt - is a direct contact print of leaves and other vegetation onto silk, wool etc. Materials used in the workshop included wool, silk, un-dyed cellulose fibres - flax, bamboo, soy silk - as well as gum leaves, rose leaves, casuarina.
The workshop was run by Nicola Brown, who runs regular felting and Eco printing workshops in Ireland, Northern Ireland, the USA, Canada, and Portugal. She was invited by TAFTA to run the workshop in Geelong.
The pieces Lynette created at the workshop were beautiful.
Our Mini-workshop on October 3 was run by Dawn, who showed a variety of crochet stitches, and taught participants how to read crochet patterns.
On September 10, 4 of our members demonstrated spinning and weaving at the Yarramalong Country Fair. It was a beautiful sunny day, and lots of people came to watch what we were doing, and to talk to us about it.
September 5: Members of the Central Coast Guild brought their picker up for us to use:
On September 5, Lyn A brought the picker from the Central Coast Group for us to play with for the day. All the bright fleece we had dyed was fed through the picker ready for us to spin a variety of novelty yarns.
Open Gardens and Art Trail
Several of our members exhibited their weaving at the Lake Macquarie Open Garden and Art Trail on September 2 and 3. The event proved a very successful fundraiser for the Hunter Medical Research Centre.
It was a busy Stashbuster day on August 8. We also brought in the fleece we had completed dyeing from last week.
On August 1 we had a dyeing day, where we dyed up a large amount of a fleece we had been given, ready for next month's workshop where we use the Picker, being lent to us by the Central Coast Group for a day. The Picker will roughly card the dyed fleece.
Lots of bright colours were called for.
On July 11 Rod Byatt presented a talk on braids and braiding. He talked about the styles of braiding which have developed in different parts of the world, and brought hundreds of samples to illustrate his talk. We are all looking forward to some braiding workshops in the new year.
Trudie Dekeijzer's Indigo dyeing exhibition opened on July 8 at Patonga. Several of our members visited the inspiring exhibition.
The Handweavers and Spinners Guild of NSW held a celebration to celebrate their 60th birthday. Several of our members particpated, or went to have a look.
Our exhibition was held at Wollombi on June 3, 4, 10, 11, and 12. Twenty of our members submitted works to the exhibition and our display at the Old Fireshed G allery looked great. Lots of positive comments, and a satisfying number of sales.
Above: Children and adults alike are drawn to the Piccolo Saori looom.
Right: Our stall at the Wollombi markets where we were able to display some of the items which we did not have room to display at the Gallery.
Biggest Morning Tea:
On May 9 we hosted a Biggest Morning Tea fundraising event for the Cancer Council. Anne Mac and her happy band of helpers turned on a great feast - a classic High Tea, with fine china and crisp white tablecloths. The food was delicious - savouries, cakes, slices and cucumber sandwiches.
We were entertained with "Fibre Bingo" followed by a quiz.
The event raised over $250 for the Cancer Council.
Marilyn celebrated a Big O birthday during the previous week, so we helped her celebrate!
Women's refuge presentation
On May 2 Jennifer came along to tell us about the local women's refuge. This is our chosen charity, and we donate funds to it every year. Supplemented by proceeds from a couple of charity shops, the refuge is reliant on donations like ours to continue operating. We are proud to be involved in supporting the wondereful work they do in providing emergency accommodation to women and children who are (mostly) victims of family violence. It was interesting to hear about way the refuge provides short term support for families going through such trauma and disruption.
We had completed a rug made from woven squares our weavers undertook as a project several years ago, and raffled the rug. The proceeds were presented to the Women's refuge as a "mid year" top-up to the money we send at the end of each year. And the rug was won by our most senior member - Marge.
Below: Gill presenting the cheque for the womens refuge to Jennifer Below: Marge with the friendship rug
April 25: A Spin-in was held at the hall to spin some fleece from the store-room. More prizes for the Biggest Morning Tea coming up.
2017 Royal Easter Show: Jean and Helene were both successful exhibitors at the Royal Easter Show.
April 18: Excursion to Feltfine. A group of us went by bus to Jilliby to visit Clare Thornley, the new owner of Feltfine. She had a great display of fibre goodies set out for us, and we all indulged in a bit of a spending spree. Then we went on to the Old Dairy Factory at Wyong for lunch, and to browse the chocolate and cheese factories. A good day out.
April 4: Lindy Boshler, an Ashford representative visited, bringing loads of luscious goodies for us to peruse and buy. She demonstrated the Ashford Carder and rigid heddle looms.
April 2/3: Six of our members attended the Saori workshop run by Kaz Madigan of Curious Weaver.
The Gathering was held on March 7, hosted by the Morisset Baptist Church Craft Group. A fun day with lots of items exhibited, a fashion parade, and a delicious lunch.
Below: Lyn A showing her new coat Amelia wearing her knitted dress Beverley modelling her lorikeet beanie
Encouragement Award (below): The encouragement award donated by Beverley was awarded this year to Anne Mac. Anne has been expanding her skills and is now weaving, spinning and learning various other crafts. She also shares with Jan the responsibility for keeping the kitchen stocked and in good order.
Weaving Workshop with Liz Calnan January 21st and February 4th
Eight Silk Weavers and Four Beginners participated in a two day workshop with Liz who set us some challenging weaves to try. Our beginners all made a woollen scarf and as a result all have already commenced or finished their next scarf.
Left: Beginners work on Looms
Right: Busy Warping and Weaving
Above: Silk Samples
Morisset Show was on the 11th and 12th February. We had a good display as usual with Jean winning the Geraldine McCulloch Award, Gill winning the Hazel Cashman Award and Sarah winning the Novice Exhibitor.
Group Entry to go to Royal Easter Show. Scarf by Carol. Felted Vest by Lorelle. Knitted Jacket by Noni
Above Left: Jean's Knitted Shawl won prize for Best in Section and Geraldine McCulloch Prize
Sarah's Pink Woven Scarf won Best Novice
Gill's woven silk scarf won Hazel Cashman Award for Creative Use of Colour and Texture