zz Northeast Fiber Arts Center

Home > Class Schedule- Spring 2018

To register for any of these classes, you need to print the registration form and mail it in with a check or your VISfA/MC info for the amount of the instruction fee only. Materials fees will be collected at the time of class.

If you are interested in a workshop here and don't live in the area you can find a list of some hotels/accommodations here

Be sure to check out our Events page for other gatherings of interest

Classes get added randomly based on what customers ask for when, and also based on when I am able to confirm dates and details with the instructors.So check back periodically or sign up for our once monthly newsletter since I always alert customers to new classes thru that.



Sashiko & Boro Stitching - FULL

Tuesday Sept 18 6-8 and Sept 25th 6 - 7:30

Embrace your Wabi-sabi and learn the traditional (and currently very "hot") Japanese techniques of Sashiko and Boro

Sashiko, a form of decorative stitching, that is experiencing a resurgence in modern apparel is a form of "slow-stitching" that is as much spiritual in it giving time for mindfulness as it is about reinforcing/mending tattered cloth in a decorative way.

Highlighting the negative space created thru simple running stitches in specific patterns, this stitching traditionally featured white thread on indigo dyed (often shibori dyed) fabrics, tho' more contemporary approaches are using a range of colors and even variegated threads!

Whether you want to stitch over a tear in your jeans or ultimately want to incoporate this technique into your quilts, felt, or sewing, this class is the place to start.

In the first session you'll learn more about the philosophy and traditions behind the stitching while you learn some stitches and how to create or transfer a pattern to your fabric and you will begin a simple design of your choice.

In the second session, you will learn the specific approaches and techniques of Boro - or Japanese Patchwork. Boro cloths/garments are traditionally garments (often kimonos) that have been sashiko stitched to mend and then patched (boro) together, recycling fabrics from olde tattered clothing and upcycling them in a patchwork way to an existing garment and then handed down over generations in a family.

Each participant will be given 1 sq foot of indigo dyed cotton and white sashiko thread and a sashiko needle as part of their registration fee.

One possible suggestion is to cut your sq foot into 4 6x6" pieces and then you can try different Sashkio stitches on each of the 4 panels and then "boro" them together into a new fabric that could be a covering for a small pillow? Or you could stitch them into mug rugs? Or, if you prefer, you could do the entire sq foot in one overlal design to practice sashiko and then bring in some old fabric swatches from garments at home on the second night to learn the Boro techniques. So you have options in what you might do with the piece you start in class, but ultimately the techniques you learn you can incorporate into mending your garments at home, to incorporate into your quilting, felting, to apply to handknits.....the possibilities are endless.

Check out pinterest for more ideas of the possibilities of what you can do with this technique - I saw sneakers, wallets, pocketbooks, and jeans all covered in sashiko!. The crochet bag shown above I found online searching under free sashiko photos - I did not make it but wanted to have a visual to show you some possibilities. Hats off to the crocheter who did! The second photo (also free stock image) just gives you a sense of some of the decorative stitches and the kimono (also free stock image) shows the approach of boro patchwork.

Instruction fee (which includes 1 sq foot of indigo dyed cotton,a sashiko needle and 2 sks of white sashiko thread) is: $30.00


Nordic Inspired Mittens -

or a simple basic mitten if you prefer!

Every Wed night in October 5:30 -7

In this 4 week workshop I'll walk you thru every aspect of knitting a 2 color mitten, inspired by one of the many gorgeous Scandinavian designs. OR....if you are new to knitting and want to keep it a simple one color mitten but want guidance and creative ideas for making a cuff more interesting than the plain vanilla ribbing, for example, or stitching on a simple felted mitten afterwards for decoration, that is Noric inspired as well!

You can stop by the shop to see the options for patterns which we have chosen to include kids to adult as well as both traditional and contemporary and including a free pattern option!

We'll review 2 color knitting and the importance of understanding yarn dominance for those of you doing 2 color knitting. PLUS, I'll show you a couple of creative and fun cast ons and interesting cuff options that will add new dimension to your mittens! And if you've chosen a simple basic Lovikka felted mitten, for example, I'll show you some simple stitching to embellish the mittens.

Then we'll work the thumb and thumb gusset together including a few tips for making these really neat! And lastly, I'll review a few different top shapings, depending on your preferences

Instruction fee: $40

Introduction to Spinning Your Own Yarn Sat Sept 22nd.. 10 - 5

During this 3 week workshop, you will learn to spin your own yarn from wool fiber using the short-draw technique. This class is suitable for those who have never spun before, as well as those who have started spinning but want more time and experience to develop your technique so you can really control the thickness of yarn you make.

We'll fill 2 bobbins with fiber on weeks one and two, and then in week 3 you'll learn to ply the yarn. I'll review the wheel's ratios and what significance they have to the yarn you are spinning, the difference between worsted and woolen spun and also carding vs. combing, but the emphasis will be on spinning.

Because you will learn best if you can practice your spinning in between WEdnesdays, I am offering this workshop free to those who purchase a wheel from me between now and May 15th.

Instruction fee includes the use of a store wheel if you don't have one (although you cannot take it home with you to practice between classes - I used to do this and the wheels were returned with parts broken and missing, sorry) , all handouts and the fiber used in class: $65

Already know the basics and want to try something new? Check out the Events page for a Night of Novelty Yarns Technique AND...

scroll down to read about the Intermediate Spinning class offered in October!

Silk Paper Making - book Binding and basket weaving with Silk!!! Sat Nov 17th 10 - 5

Use 100% silk fibers - tussah, eri, bombyx, reeled, hankies, etc - to create paper that you will then use to make a beautiful note book and to weave a basket.

From using the gorgeous natural colors of both cultivated and wild types of silk to the beautifully dyed deep saturated colors of tussah silk, you will be amazed at the gorgeous papers you can create! In addition to using some of what you create in class to bind a notebook, you'll also make lots of sheets of 100% silk paper that you can take home to then use for notes and cards to send for the holidays or to consider for special party (wedding?) invitations! The bound notebooks and woven baskets (Yes...those baskets above are woven from 100% silk paper!) make lovely gifts!

So make a ladies day of it - get some friends together, pack a lunch and come spend a day exploring color and silk and being amazed at what can be done with this fiber!

Instruction fee includes all of the silk you use: $100


Kumihimo a Dog Leash Tuesdays Oct 9, 16 & 23rd 5:30 - photo coming - I couldn't find it just now!

Learn the craft of Kumihimo and make a new leash for your best friend this fall!

If you're like me, you're tired of seeing the same 8 patterns/colors of dog collars and leashes around - whether PFW, Pet Smart, Guys Farm & Yard---they all have the same ones!

So come put your own colors together and weave/braid a new leash that will be unique. Using either cotton or a cotton/linen/hemp blend yarn and the Japanese braiding technique of Kumihimo, I'll guide you thru the steps of making a great handle, weaving the leash body, and then finishing it off and adding the hook.

Class fee includes the yarn, hook, kumihimo disc and instruction: $45


Intro To Felt Thurs Sept 27th 5:30 - 8:30 - 1 space left

In this workshop you'll learn the basic fundamentals of wet felting while making a great pair of wristlets. You'll have fun playing with design and color while learning to felt around a resist so other 3-D constructions (like slippers, hats, etc) come easily to you.

Instruction fee includes the materials and instruction: $55

Intermediate Spinning - Sat Oct 27th 10 - 5

Join SOAR mentor, Spin-Off contributing author and silk expert Robin Russo for a workshop that will take your spinning to a new level! Whether you've learned on your own or started with a beginning class, you may have reached a point in your spinning that you can produce a decent yarn, but either don't know how to vary it for different gauges of yarn, for different types of fiber (even wools from different breeds of sheep require different approaches to spinning since they have very different characteristics!) or for different intended purposes - like weaving vs. knitting. Or maybe you are using the same technique and ratio for everything you spin - whether it is Romney, merino, alpaca or the lawnmower sheep whose fleece you got from the neighbor next door! All this means you are ready to learn now how to integrate different ratios, spinning techniques and fiber prep techniques to these different situations and take your spinning to a whole new level.

This in-depth class covers fibers, woolen and worsted spinning, drafting techniques, wheel adjustments and ratios. You will learn about twists per inch, wraps per inch and angle or twist and how fiber preparation affects the yarn you spin.

You will also learn to finish your skein for a professional look. This class will help participants to fine tune their spinning skills and put to use some of the techniques they may have read about, but not explored.

The teacher will collect a $12 materials fee from each participant at the class - please bring cash or check to cover that.

Instruction fee:$65.00

Garment Guidance for Knitters - First Thursday of Oct, Nov and Dec ( so 10/4, 11/1 and 12/6) 5:30 - 6:30 or 7

The sweater workshop we held this last winter was great in that I walked the participants thru every single step from gauge swatching thru adjusting the fit/pattern to seaming. But some customers have projects already going that they don't need every step by step, handout laden foramlity for and, instead, just want/ need "spot guidance" here and there thru the tricky spots or elements that are new for them.

So that is what these first Thursday of the month night sessions are about this fall!

You bring the garment (sweater or poncho or shawl) that you are working on (no mittens, wristlets, hats, or socks etc - check out our classes for those) and having trouble with and I'll be here to help you thru the tough patche(s). So whether it is up front that you want help understanding how to check your gauge or make a substitution of yarn or gauge for your pattern, or at the end when you have pieces to put together and you don't know where to start or how best to seam them, or, in the middle if your pattern calls for some instruction that you don't understand - I'll be here to help you thru it one evening each month.

Bring the pattern, your project and your questions to each session and I'll help you thru the tough spots.

Price for access to the three evenings of help: $24

Magic Loop - it's not just for socks!!

Oct 30 & Nov 6th 5:30 - 7:30

So many customers have been in recently who did not know how to do the basic "magic loop" or the more advanced "2 at once magic loop". And their reaction was that they thought those techniques were just for socks and since they didn't knit socks they had never bothered to learn them.

But these techniques are great for hats, sleeves, and mittens as well so I thought I'd offer this

So join me the first evening and learn the basic magic loop.

The second week you'll learn how to adjust the magic loop technique to "do 2 at once".

If time allows each night, I can also show a "better" short row technique than the typical wrap & turn many patterns call for, as well as a simple "provisional cast on" in case anyone is interested and we have the time.

Bring a 40" circular needle appropriate for the yarn you have (you'll need 2 balls at least 50 yards of each) plus another needle and yarn appropriate for it to practice the cast on and the short row technique!

Instruction fee: $25


Building Surface Design in Felt - Saturday October 13th 9 - 5

In this full day class we will work 5 samples to show you various techniques for adding surface design/structure into felt. I ran this advanced beginner/intermediate class about 6 years ago and it was a hit so I thought I'd offer it again. From working with prefelts to layering and cutting to stitching and shibori.

Whether you ultimately are interested in felt vessels, wall hangings, garments, accessories like bags and hats or creating home furnishings, this workshop will set you up nicely to add color, depth, line, and dimension to all your future felts.

Instruction fee: $45 Bring your stash of merino and prefelts to work with or buy it here at the usual 15% class discount.


Felting Week

April 15 - 20, 2019

I know....the cost of these "big" felting classes (big names and big projects) is up there! It is an indulgence that most of us have to save for and aren't in a position to do on a whim!

But keep in mind as you read the details below and think about your vacation time next year - that you are not only getting a spectacular one of a kind coat or dress out of these classes, but you are learning a lot of techniques that will fuel your future felting projects at home for the years to come.

AND the "experience" of getting away for a week from the usual routine and letting yourself be one in the creative process - away from email, the workplace, the "to-do" and "what I didn't get done" lists! - is really important to our sanity.

Classes are like traveling to an exotic land - as Mark Twain once said about travel -

you can lose yourself and find yourself at the same time!

Register for both the coat and the dress for $895 and save!

Felt Coat - Mon - Thurs April 15 - 18, 2019 9:30 - 4:30

This 4 day workshop will focus on creatively exploring surface design options while designing and making a one-piece nuno felted A-line coat.

Students will learn how to create and to add box pleats and extra float accent into the coats to create a flattering princess line coat with either long or short sleeves.

Students will learn to develop and enlarge their own pattern with a very simple, but effective method that Charity uses in her own work and that will help them to make a coat that will suit and fit their body shape and aesthetics.

Students can have fun with all kinds of fibers (linen, soya, silk fibers) and raw wool to create the surface textures to their own liking.

No sewing needed.
Felting experience required.

Class size limited to 8.

Fee includes space rental at Old Brick Church (2 blocks from here) plus rental/delivery of 2 tables (with risers) and lunch.

This workshop will be held at the OBC just two blocks from the store. Each participant will have 2 tables to work on and plenty of room, but that means I need to limit enrollment - so don't delay in registering if you want this class!

Instruction fee for 4 days: $695

A detailed list of supplies will be provided to those who register, but to get an idea of the amount of fiber you will need so you can consider additional costs - approx 500 gm of 18 or 19 micron merino plus 9 meters of chiffon, pongee or habotai (3.5 - 5mm). Plus assorted wools, locks, silks for embelllishments.

If you pick a color of merino for your main color (500 gms) and want to purchase it here I will extend a 20% discount on the 500 gms to participants - but I need to know by Jan 1st what color you want the 500 gms of so I can be sure to have that in stock for you when I place the January order. Other embellishments, silk, etc will be at the normal 15% discount to class participants.


Felt Skirt or Sleeveless Dress Fri and Sat April 19 & 20 9:30 - 4:30 Just 2 spaces open!

Join Charity and learn her technique for creating a lovely seamless nuno felt sleeveless dress or creatively textured skirt - whichever is your preference.

For this workhsop, participants will need about 6 meters of silk fabric and about 350 gms of merino wool. Plus, of course, assorted silks, nepps, locks, pin drafted top, etc for embellishements!

The instruction fee includes rental/delivery of 2 tables (with risers) to the space I have rented at the Old Brick Church 2 blocks from here and lunch. Class size is limited to 8.

Instruction fee: $350

A more detailed list of supplies and materials will be forwarded to those who register.

This class will be held a couple of blocks from here so everyone has 2 tables to work on and plenty of elbow room.



more classes to come - check back around periodically

In the works:

Freeform Tapestry Weaving

Felted Ottoman

Rigid Heddle Weaving





Nota Bene: You must prepay to confirm your spot in a class. Fees paid to confirm a spot are NOT refundable if you, for any reason, cannot attend. If the class is cancelled by the teacher or store, then a full refund will be issued. Don't register unless you are sure you can participate, but don't delay since most classes fill quickly. In the event you sign up and can't make the class, you are welcome to send someone in your spot, but you are responsible for finding your replacement and making whatever financial arrangements between yourselves.