I remember my first weaving lesson like it was yesterday. I came to a weaving studio early, walked into a large, cavernous room full of mysterious equipment, and realized that I know nothing about what will happen next. Other newbies entered the room, and we just stood there, after brief shy introductions, not knowing what to do with ourselves. Then a very energetic and cheerful lady with beautiful white hair walked in. She invited us to sit around a table I didn’t noticed before, and started talking. This is how I met my weaving teacher, Nancy Boyne.
And this is how my wonderful journey in the weaving world began. Nancy taught me every technical thing I know about weaving. She taught me how to wind a warp, throw a shuttle and finish edges. She advised and helped, guided and shared. But above all, she taught me a very important thing.
One evening Nancy was talking about one of her projects and she said, oh, I winged it. I have not heard this expression before, but from the context it was clear that she somehow managed to pull it off when a project went askew. She used this expression again describing how she went adventurous with her weaving, it did not go well, she improvised and ta-da! The victory was hers!
And that was the most important lesson for me. Nancy showed me that I can be creative, break the rules, play with yarn, step away from the printed instructions – and, when my experiments turn sour, I can wing it based on my technical knowledge, patience, experience and persistence. She showes me that I am free to weave in my own unique way, and that I can learn how to be successful and to turn mistakes into learning.
Weaving is an amazing process. I know that if I am stuck with uneven tension in the warp, or smiling corners, or poor combo of warp and weft – I can pause, breathe and remind myself that I can wing it. And for that freedom of expressing myself through weaving I am very grateful to my weaving teacher, Nancy Boyne.