28 May 2011

Meet the Team - Chris

I am Chris Beech, Secretary for the Festival 2012 team. I have worked with Joan in the past, as Area Secretary when she was Delegate for Nelson/Marlborough, and as Deputy Editor for Creative Fibre magazine when Joan was Editor.

I am an enthusiastic weaver and sometime spinner, with special affection for my 4 shaft Fred’s Shed loom and Ashford jumbo spinning wheel. I have exhibited widely at local, Area and National levels.

I dabble in all aspects of weaving, from floor rugs and throws, scarves and wraps, to table linens and runners. I do have occasional forays into art weaving, but consider technique my strength rather than design.

Weaving has always been in conjunction with my active farming career: dairy [7 years], high country merino [29 years] and, more recently, a small hillside vineyard near Blenheim. Other addictions are tramping, alpine botany and single malts.

Autumn in the Beech Block vineyard

Wool/mohair throw rugs. I enjoy weaving these as there are so many variations possible with weave technique and colour

This says it all, really


24 May 2011

Meet the Team - Joan

My role as Festival coordinator is to have a broad over-view of the whole event. This means making sure there are no loose threads in the net that can unravel.

I am passionate about textiles in all forms. I was a production weaver for many years and have exhibited widely, though mostly in Australia. I am proficient in many disciplines, spinning, weaving, knitting, crochet, felting and basketmaking.

Since returning to New Zealand in 1980 I have been very involved in Creative Fibre, serving as Nelson/Marlborough delegate and then National President at the turn of the century. It was a challenge, but a very worthy one, to widen the scope of the NZSWWS Inc to include a wider range of disciplines. We should cherish the old but embrace the new.

My vision for the Festival is that we can deliver on our aim ‘to interest, educate and inspire’. We are lucky to have a very good team working to make sure this happens and that we all (registrants, visitors and workers) will have fun too.

This is me raising a glass to Creative Fibre Festival 2012 wearing a handspun, handwoven suit ’35 years old’.
I live on a sheep/beef farm 30 km west of Blenheim. A view from the hill above my house, looking over our house, the vineyards across the highway, the Wairau river to the Richmond range with Mt. Fishtail. This also shows another special love of mine – trees.
The walls of my office/workroom contains many ‘treasures’ collected over the years. Inspiration is everywhere.
Three hand-dyed merino scarves. From left: handspun silk with S and Z spun merino woven in a twill, ikat dyed woven in tabby, felted with silk.


19 May 2011

Remembering Thames

Wasn't this wonderful? Could this be a taste of what is to come next year?


08 May 2011


Our Creative Fibre Festival 2012 team entered the Action Competition felting section at Thames Creative Fibre Festival 2011 last week. The aim of the Action Competitions was to promote creativity, originality and technical excellence.

The Marlborough team of 4 had to produce an item of jewellery or a fashion accessory within a 1 1/2 - 2 hour time frame. Their creation was a winner: a felted necklace/scarf and flower brooch, with the elements also able to be combined as a hairpiece/fascinator.

Chris / Nancy