Edit: See the bottom of the post for a short recap of my sessions in the NeedleArts Zone, and some links to weaving references for teachers and parents!
It’s Maker Faire Bay Area weekend! And Maker Faire has its very own NeedleArts Zone, sponsored by TNNA, The National Needlearts Association. The NeedleArts Zone provides opportunities for makers small and large to learn how to knit, crochet, spin, weave, needlepoint, and cross-stitch. Supplies and teachers are provided FOR FREE: show up, sign up, and you’ll get to try something new. I’m excited to be teaching weaving on little looms, one of my new favorite things to make with!
Maker Faire has something for every kind of maker, as well as makers of all ages. 3-D printing, alternative energy, rockets, robotics, VR, woodworking… the list is endless. And if you’re not sure you want to MAKE, it’s a great place to people watch.
Here’s a few photos from yesterday’s set up. You can find the NeedleArts Zone in building 2, Craft section. We’re right on a corner!
Maker Faire Recap
In addition to helping set up on Thursday, I worked Friday afternoon and Sunday morning/early afternoon in the NeedleArts Zone teaching weaving, my current fiber-related new hobby. Here are just a few thoughts and photos on the experience!
Friday was student day at Maker Faire. When the gates opened, the first students into the Needlearts Zone swarmed the needlepoint station. SWARMED, truly. Every time I looked over from the weaving station, the needlepoint tables were full of stitchers. How wonderful is that?!
My tables quickly filled up with new weavers ranging in age from eight to 18. I had some great conversations with parents, who wanted to know where to get the looms so their kids could keep weaving at home. Teachers can incorporate making a loom out of cardboard into their class activities, getting kids to practice measuring and cutting skills before moving on to weaving itself (see these free patterns from Red Heart for instructions on making a cardboard loom as well as the basics of weaving: LW4978, LW4979, LW4918).
Sunday was equally busy, but with adult learners as part of the mix. Many went beyond the basics of plain weave and tried more complicated basketweave and tapestry techniques. While we had warped the looms for students ahead of time, each student learned how to take their piece off the loom and finish the ends so they had something to take home as a reminder of what they learned.
It was exhilarating to be part of creating so many new weavers, spinners, knitters, crocheters, and stitchers!