The Columbia Weavers and Spinners Guild is presenting its 25th Annual Holiday Exhibition and Sale this November. When we started in 1990, our goal was to build community, to education the public about fiber, and to learn better marketing skills.
Many members have participated in the HES as the guild itself has grown, and we have definitely built lasting friendships as we have worked together on this event. It takes a lot of planning and many hands to publicize the exhibition, make an inviting display, and demonstrate throughout a weekend. We plumb all our other skills, from record keeping, writing, marketing, and teaching, to pull it all together. (Many participants have “day jobs” in addition to being fiber artists.)
Over the years, we’ve had Girl Scouts, 4-H club members, college students, football fans, people of all ages and interests, come see the demonstrations of weaving, spinning, twining, felting, and knitting. One loom is warped for anyone to try. It’s fun to watch people tentatively throw a shuttle for the first time and figure out how the cloth is formed.
And we continue to learn ourselves. How do we present our handwovens? What color is featured in the mass market each year? What is the best way to finish the fiber so the customer can more clearly see what it is? What makes a good display?
One of my favorite parts of the Holiday Exhibition and Sale is seeing what everyone else is making. There is so much talent out there, so much creativity, that it fires the imagination! Just look at what can be done!
So if you happen to be in Columbia, Missouri November 7, 8 or 9, stop by the Boone County Historical Society Museum and be inspired!