Pioneer Valley Weavers News

January 7, 2023

We are a guild of weavers united by our common fascination with the interlacement of fibers. Some of us are just beginning to enjoy weaving, others are fairly proficient and a few are professional weavers. Several of us are at the loom every day while others struggle to find small bits of time in which to weave.

We weave on large looms in separate rooms devoted just to weaving and small looms on the kitchen table. We gather to encourage and learn from each other. PVW is the sum of our actions, reflected in our reputation.

Our meetings are held on the 2nd Tuesday from September through June at WEBS, 75 Service Center Road, Northampton, MA, in Classroom 3.


Pioneer Valley Weavers wish to express their gratitude to WEBS for their long-term and generous support of our Guild and our programs.

January Presentation

A Tour of the Weaving Room at WEBS by Mary Jones, assisted by Barbara Elkins

Don’t miss this curated tour of the WEBS own weaving room where Mary will introduce us to all the looms, tools, accessories and gadgets designed to make your weaving more efficient and enjoyable.

Chair’s Corner

Happy New Year, Weavers! 

Last year, Carol Birtwistle, the Guild Librarian, and Barbara Elkins gave a tour through the PVW Library, located at WEBS in Classroom 3. The collection is extensive and includes published material new and old, magazines, as well as the weaving history of the guild itself. 

The collection is available to members during the Guild meeting and when WEBS is open and Classroom 3 is not in use. Carol reports each month on when the library is available to members in the Newsletter and also at the Guild meeting, Carol also reports what new acquisitions she’s acquired for the library. If you are aware of a new book or other material that you think should be added to the collection, you can let Carol know at a monthly meeting or send her an email. 

As with all good libraries, it’s a great place to research and/or browse. See you at the Library. 


Agenda – January 10, 2023

    • December Minutes
    • Treasurer’s Report
    • NEWS Report
    • Library Report
    • Market Place Report
    • Membership Report\
    • Discussion Group

New Business

    • Door Prize
    • Show and Share
    • Program – Mary Jones will give us a tour of the weaving room at WEBS highlighting the use, differences, and importance of weaving looms, tools, and accessories.

Minutes for 12/13/2022

Minutes of the December meeting were unavailable at publication.

Members of Pioneer Valley were pleased for Kathy and Steve Elkins on the announcement of their well-earned retirement. At the same time we are saddened by the fact that they will no longer be part of WEBS. PVW has been extremely fortunate to benefit from the generosity of the Elkins Family. Thank you for meeting space, workshop space, storage of and access to the guild Library as well as other freedoms and kindnesses over many years. Wishing you a long, healthy and enjoyable retirement!

Pioneer Valley Weavers Members

Weaving Air: A Workshop Overview of Lace Weaves

Workshop given by Laurie Autio

Two-day Workshop, April 22nd and 23rd, 2023
All levels welcome and accommodated
Held at the Florence Community Center, Florence MA

Lace weaves magically allow the weaver to bend the grid, creating holes to allow air and light to become part of their design. These weaves have been called “plain weave with defects” (Diana Frost), with floats added in one or both directions to pattern the cloth. We will start the workshop with an introductory lecture on the loomcontrolled lace weaves, including Huck, Canvas, Swedish Lace, Lace Bronson, and Spot Bronson. We’ll look at how each structure works, plus setts, materials, and weaving tips. There will be a wide variety of samples and pieces to examine.

This workshop is a roundrobin, onloom exploration of lace weaves, huck, canvas, Swedish lace, lace Bronson (AtwaterBronson lace), and spot Bronson. The looms are
warped in different lace drafts, in a variety of fibers, grists, and colors. The treadling for each loom has simple instructions for the person who is trying the structure for the
first time, plus intermediate and advanced instructions for those who are more familiar with the particular structure. At the end, we will cut off the warps and discuss the variety of woven samples.

If time a permits (it is tight in the 2day version), a halfhour exercise for interested intermediate and advanced weavers demonstrates a quick trick for transferring a profile tieup to lace weave tieups.

Cost for both days including handout fee is $225.

To reserve your spot, please contact Ellen Redman at moc.liamg@1namder.nellE.

Nancy Evans, Treasurer


PVW currently has 38 members. Membership is required to benefit from a preferential registration and fee on the April Workshop.

Membership in PVW renews annually. The guild year runs from July 1st through June 30th. Dues are $30, which includes monthly programs from September through June, access to PVW’s vast Library, discounted workshop fees, access to our loaner looms, and our Newsletter. Other benefits are occasional notices of outside workshops, looms and equipment for sale, exhibits from other guilds, reduced entry fees for NEWS exhibits and inclusion on the NEWS Guild Table Display.

Our Membership Chair is Peggy Wolff. You can mail Peggy your check for $30. made to Pioneer Valley Weavers at 126 Cave Hill Road, Leverett, MA 01054.

Discussion Group

It seems like such a long time since we last met and it was. We’re getting close now, though.

 The next meeting will be January 20 at 2 p.m., Classroom 2 (please note different location than normal) at WEBS. Hopefully you’ve had some time to finish up new projects so we can continue the great meetings we’ve had for the past several months. 

See you soon.

Barbara Elkins, moc.liamg@revaewavee


The PVW library is open during WEBS store hours. The keys to the cabinets are located on the side of the white bookcase, which is to your left as you enter the Weaving Office. 

Library holdings may be borrowed for four weeks at a time. Please return items on time so they are available to other guild members.

The return box is in cabinet #1. The sign out/sign in notebook is placed on top of the return box.

The following is a list of days and dates when the library is inaccessible because of classes. 

  • Friday, January 20: 1pm – 5:00 pm
  • Saturday, January 21: all day

Carol Birtwistle has processed and added the following books to the PVW Library (Thank you Carol!):

  • Weave Structures the Swedish Way, Volume 1, 1976, 1966, translated and adapted by Becky Ashenden
  • Huck Pattern Collections, 1996, edited by Rita Ciaranello, Jane H Flanagan and Marjie Thompson
  • Winding a Warp & Using a Paddle, 1998, Peggy Osterkamp
  • Warping Your Loom & Tying on New Warps, 1997, Peggy Osterkamp
  • Weaving You Can Wear, 1973, Jean Wilson with Jan Burhen
  • Bag Bazaar, 2008, Megan Avery
  • A Color Notation, 1961, A. H. Munsell
  • Roche vom Handweb-stuhl, 1984, Iris Hellmuth-Germann


My apologies for missing the December meeting. Marketplace will return in January. There are a few new items for your purchasing pleasure.

Deb Adamczyk

New England Weavers Seminar (NEWS)

Worcester State University
July 20 – 23, 2023

The NEWSletter was posted to the NEWS website in early November; use the above website to access. Refer to the NEWSletter and website for the most recent updates on exhibits and the NEWS Program.

NEWS Guild Challenge 

As a contributing guild to NEWS, PVW will have the opportunity to display pieces woven by our guild members. Although this is not a juried event, we usually work with a theme. We are using the theme developed for the January Challenge. The unifying idea of the Guild Table is color and drafts chosen from one of the following:

  • “A Weaver’s Book of 8-Shaft Patterns” by Carol Strickler
  • “A Handweaver’s Pattern Book” by Marguerite Davison

The project can use any number of shafts but must use a minimum of three (3) colors. The final piece must be flat.

Some of you have completed projects; keep them safe until the time of collection. Latecomers have time to work toward their piece(s). If you prefer not to participate in the themed exhibit, your choice of submission will still be accepted for exhibit.

PVW Guild Table, NEWS 2019

PVW Website

Our website is under construction!  Jackie has been working hard at establishing a new and improved website for the guild. The Board has had a sneak peek and Jackie’s hard work shows. The site is almost finished. Look for an email soon, with details on how to access the new site. As always, please send contributions to Jackie Proko at ten.xoc@godncnad.

Show and Share

At every meeting there’s a table to display your latest creations. Don’t be shy! Share what you’ve been working on, a new weaving book you bought, trial and error, etc. Members have the option to talk about their item, with the membership, between the business meeting and the Program.

Book and Name Tags

Please take the time to sign-in yourself and any guests! We encourage all members to wear nametags every month for the benefit of newer members.

Newsletter and Website Submissions

Please feel free to share your tips and newly learned tricks, pictures from a weaving-related trip, your recent creation, a book review, etc. with the membership through the following resources:

Please email newsletter submissions to Debbie Adamczyk at ten.tsacmoc@kyzcmadajd.

Please email website submissions to Jackie Proko at moc.liamg@godncnad.

PVW Classifieds

Do you have weaving books or equipment for sale? Send your advertisement, with or without pictures to Debbie Adamczyk (ten.tsacmoc@kyzcmadajd). Debbie will distribute your ad to the membership. (Personal sales only, please.)

Other Guild-Related Groups

Pioneer Valley Weavers Facebook Page (Public)

Pioneer Valley Weavers Facebook Group (Members Only)

Pioneer Valley Facebook Discussion Group


I heard that I missed a really good presentation on yarns last month! As many people were unable to attend, Barbara Elkins has allowed inclusion of her program notes in this newsletter. Please see the following for those notes. Tons of great information! Thank  you, Barbara!

From Barbara Elkins


  •  No one ever has enough yarn;
  •  Whatever yarn is on your shelves, it’s never right for what you want to make now.

Why use a knitting yarn to weave with?

It’s right for what you want to make

You like the yarn so much you have to have some! Stash worthy.

When looking at yarns, think about color, texture, plies, end use: warp, weft, supplemental, incidental and ????.

How to figure out yards/lb in skeined, balled or cake yarns:

Divide yds/ball or skein by weight (change to ounces from grams):

          50 gm.=1.75 oz., 100 gms.=3.5 oz., etc.

Multiply by 16 (oz.) to get yds/lb.

Example: 50 gm ball with 125 yards = 1,142 yds/lb.:  125 ÷ 1.75 x 16 = 1142. That is close in yardage to 3/2 cotton at 1260, so sett would be similar. Do a sample or see if you can come closer using the MASTER YARN CHART. Adjust for fiber type.

Sett and Yardage Reference: Search: MASTER YARN CHART, Interweave, 2009

The thumbnail test: How I consider using a knitting yarn, and sometimes even a coned yarn, for warp. Unless certain a yarn will work remember to do a sample, including wet finishing. Don’t do thumbnail test on yarn that’s not yet yours!

Where the aisle signs came from.

**Use the website,, to find yarns, yarn information including descriptions, types of yarn, inventory available, care, and what’s on sale.



How they were named.

Aisle 100: A selection of Valley yarns in skeins that might be interesting for weavers.

Montague: Rippled organic cotton. Baby blankets, shawls. 110 yds/50 gm hanks. 1000 yds/lb,

Superwash in all sizes on skeins in color ranges and undyed.

Southampton: Mohair/silk. 235 yds/25 gm. 4200 yds/lb.

Charlemont: Merino/silk/poly. 439 yds/100 gm. 2000 yds/lb.

Hatfield: Baby alpaca. 437 yds/50 gm. 4000 yds/lb.

Huntington Splash: 75% superwash merino/25% nylon. 436 yds/100 g. 2000 yds/lb.

Huntington: 218 yds/50g.

Huntington natural on cones: 100g/436yds. 4,260 yds/cone (1,982yds/lb, sold on ~2.2 lb cones


Aisle 200: Closeouts/Bulky. Might be of some interest. We can skip I think. Look for Lopi-like non-stretchy yarns

Aisle 300: Worsted. Mostly soft and stretchy and not appropriate.

Of note: boxes with single or two balls. There might be treasures here. Boxes all with different prices.  Probably helpful to take box out to check, but be sure to replace box. Single balls/skeins, maybe two of each. Small amounts of interesting leftovers.

United Cotton: 100% cotton. 25 gm./47 yd. balls. Color work or play w/lots of colors. 900 yds/lb.

Plymouth: Eros II. Novelty “Railroad yarn”, 100% nylon. 165 yds/50g.

Aisle 400: Worsted

Aisles 5 & 6: Lace, Sport, Fingering & DK. Closeouts, discontinued yarns.

Bamboo Pop. Universal Yarns. 100g/292yds. 1360 yds/lb. 50% Cotton/50% Bamboo

Discontinued colors.

*Flax Lace. Fibra Natura. 100% linen. 547 yds/100g., 2500 yds/lb.

Java. Fibra Natura. 100% hemp. 219 yds/100g. Interesting fiber.

Llama Lace. Cascade. 100% baby llama. 601 yds/100g. 2750 yds/lb.

Sorata. Cascade. 70% baby llama/30% silk. 437 yds/100g. 2000 yds/lb.

Fixation. Cascade. 98% cotton/2% elastic. 100 yds/50g relaxed; 186  yds stretched. Novelty yarn.

Manos. Alma. 100% merino superwash. 546 yds/100g. 2500 yds/lb.

Noro. Geshi. 656 yds/200g. 1500 yds/lb. 35% Viscose/35% Cotton/20% Silk/10% Wool

    Multi-color cakes.  $$$

Katia. Mimosa. 100% cotton. 524 yds/200g. 1250 yds/lb.

Amano. Mayu Lace. 60% alpaca/g.20% cashmere/20%silk. 437 yds/50g.

Shibui. Silk Cloud. 60% kid mohair/40% silk. 330 yds/25g.6000 yds/lb.

Rowan. Cashmere Haze. 40% alpaca/30% cashmere/30% silk. 230 yds/25g. 4200 yds/lb.

Katia. Sinfonia. Cotton/alpaca/wool/poly. 557 yds/150g. 1700 yds/lb.

KFI. Painted Lace & Painted Lace Rainbow. 100% cotton. 874 yds/200g. 1900 yds/lb.

Trendsetter. Fleur. 46% cotton/46% acrylic/8% polyamid. Braided novelty yarn. 230 yds/100g.

Trendsetter. La Furla. 6 colors. Eyelash yarn. 91% polyamid/9% polyester. 75 yds/50g.

*Arucania. Ollagua. 100% linen. 280 yds/100g. 1280 yds/lb. (In front of warehouse)

Aisle 700 & 800: Coned yarns. Review.

Aisle 900: Tahki

Cotton Classic. 100% mercerized cotton. 47 colors. 108 yds/50g. 987 yds/lb.

Donegal Tweed fine. 70% wool/30% mohair. 21 colors 218 yds/lb.

*Tandem. Novelty yarn. 28% cotton/28% viscose/28% nylon/16% acrylic. 107 yds/50g.

Debbie Bliss. Beautiful & pricey.

Grampa’s Garage. Last stop before boxes. Changing constantly.