PLG Newsletter Winter 2001-2002

More Pearls from your President

Much has happened since our last communication. The world has changed and our lives along with it Joanie Trimble reminds us what a calming therapy our common pastime can be in these stressful times. Sit down at your pillow and shut out the trauma of the outside world for a while. for some time. And come enjoy the tree at our annual demonstration in the Croghan You might work on ornaments for our Christmas tree. We haven’t had any contributions Schenley Room of Pitt’s Cathedral of Learning on December 2 from noon to 4:00. The Nationality Rooms will. all be adorned for the holidays and there will be ethnic food, music and dancing in the Commons Room. Our twentieth anniversary celebration, the Reds workshop’ and Judy Zeiss’ presentation of Lace Around the World” were collectively a rousing success. Many thanks to Churchill Borough for allowing us to use their beautiful building, to Dorothy Kokal for housing and feed trig Judy, to Amy Gibbons for fetching and returning Judy in long tiring journeys to and from the wilds of Michigan. and to Betsy Sykes for arranging every little detail so carefully (and then not being able to take part in the workshop). It was a great occa-~on, and you missed a lot if you didn’t attend-and we missed you!Speaking of Christmas, if you haven’t yet heard, our holiday party has been changed to Saturday, December 29, 2001, from 2:00 to 4:00 at the church. Russ, of Robin and Russ Handweavers, will be in the area and has agreed to pay us a visit with goodies from their stock-books, threads, etc. We are holding a holiday open house, so bring your friends, and some edible goodies for us to gorge on. See you then (and, I hope, on the intervening Thursday nights) and Happiest Holidays to all! -Margot Barbour

Pittsburgh Lace Group Twentieth Anniversary
We celebrated our anniversary with Judy Zeiss and her presentation, “Lace Around the World.” Her accompanying lace collection included modern and antique lace examples. Everyone enjoyed her edifying and fascinating talk. On Saturday and Sunday, Judy taught a class on Bedfordshire lace for beginning and advanced lacemakers. We greatly appreciated her sharing her knowledge (and patience!) with us. It was a lot of intensive (and frustrating for some) work but we loved it! We shopped to our hearts’ content, thanks to Tracy Jackson from The Lacemaker, Kathy Tuchner form Michigan, and bobbins by Eric Stevenson. A pleasant surprise was Diane Grandstaff dropping by with her bobbins as well. We had lots of goodies on Friday evening before the lecture, potluck lunches Saturday and Sunday and a splendid dinner Saturday night at D’Imperios in Monroeville. Pittsburgh Lace Groupers do not go hungry!We’d lake to thank Churchill Borough for allowing us to use their fine building for three days. Also thanks to Dorothy Kokal for inviting Judy to stay with her: to Amy Gibbons for driving long and hard o Michigan to fetch Judy and returning her afterwards; and to Betsy Sykes for her endless hours of work which resulted in such a successful celebration/workshop.The members who took part in the workshop were Margot Barbour, Gretchen Baudoux, Amy Gibbons, Jozica Gorman, Tracy Jackson, Dorothy Kokal, Barbara Us, Suzanne Potter, and Joan Trimble.-Barbara Lis

Demonstration Reports
PLG: In Two Places at Once
The weekend of September 15, the Pittsburgh Lace Group was scheduled to demonstrate at Phipps Conservatory. We then received an invitation to be a part of “Strings to Things” at Erick Park. After much Thursday night discussion we decided to do both. The public and staff at Phipps are exceptionally nice. On Saturday Barb, Dewi, Robin, and Amy spent the day making lace while talking with the public. Since Amy was working on a Russian filling, there were lots of cries that she was lost again. Dewi had designed a piece to practice leaves or pointed tallies, using green silk left from the Milanese workshop. The “try-it’1 pillow had a fairly good workout and flyers for the group and for Judy Zeiss’ “Lace Around the World” program were widely distributed. The major excitement for Saturday was a squirrel hopping down the middle of the aisle and, unlike Little Grey Rabbit, seemed uninterested in lace and just kept on going.On Sunday, Amy and Suzanne started the day making lace and were soon joined by Margot. Amy, suffering from some lacy version of tennis elbow, then jumped ship. -Amy Gibbons

Strings into Things
Sunday, September 16, 2001, found the PLG not only at Phipps Conservatory, but at the Frick Park Environmental Center. The group was part of a first time fiber celebration called “From Strings to Things,” sponsored by Ewe Guys, a local spinning group. It was billed as “a celebration of wool, flax, spinning, knitting, lacemaking, weaving, and other related fiber arts.” Robin Panza and I represented the PLG on a beautiful, breezy, early fall afternoon. Also present at the celebration were a number of other groups and individuals focused on fibers. These included Ewe Guys, who were spinning flax and wool on their wheels and also giving quick demonstrations of spinning on drop spindles they fashioned out of old compact discs and dowel rods. There were also vegetable dyers, knitters, and crocheters. One woman had a beautiful triangle loom on which she was weaving a red, white, and blue shawl she planned to display in her office in order to “commemorate the nines.” One husband-and-wife card-weaving team was weaving intricate bands of color that just astonished me. And, of course, since one does not live by fibers alone, there was a woman making apple butter in a huge copper kettle. Since the focus of the gathering was on fibers, the crowd seemed very interested in what we were doing. Robin was working in silk on a pattern she had designed, and I was completing Louise Colgan’s Milanese heart design. Many of the visitors had seen bobbin lacemaking before. Most asked very intelligent questions, and some expressed interest in joining the Thursday night class. On the whole, it was lovely day to spend in the park, and offered, at least to me, a comforting diversion from the trauma that was occurring in the outside world. I think that the festival was a success, and I hope that this represents only the first “string” in a project that will continue from year to year.-Joanie Trimble

National Lace Making Day
Debbie Beever, the president of IOU,Tin declared October 1 National Lace Making Day. Thanks to the kindness of Suzanne Potter, we demonstrated at the Oakmont Public Library from 10:00 A.M. to 2:00 F.M. We filled two tables full of stuff and Suzanne finished her frame while Amy again got lost in the Russian filling. We were surprised by a visit from former member, Blanch Asherman. There were also a newspaper photographer and a few interested observers. We displayed our IOLI sign prominently.-Amy Gibbons

Another adventure in lacemaking with frozen fingers! We had a prominent place near the entrance to the event. Barb and Amy were in a “tent” with a weaver who was busy spmrun.~g. She had a number of items for sale; fortunately for her, they were heavy and couldn’t blow away. What a frustrating day! Everything we put on the table had to be clipped down and it still wanted to blow away. My plastic cover tried to blow up every time I took my hands away from it to do a sewing. When we were in the sun it was fine, but when the sun was behind a cloud, it was pretty fresh. By the time Sonya came at two we were both cold and frustrated. Sonya wisely was knitting a lacy shawl for her mother. Many people predictably knew we were tatting. Joanie and Suzanne took over for the group on Sunday.-Amy Gibbons

Book Review
Usually when I review a book for the newsletter, it is a book about lacemaking or lacemakers. This time I have something new and different. The book is Crewel World, by Monica Ferris. It is a mystery involving a needlework shop, a murder, and a number of puzzles. It is a fun read and is the fIrst in a series. I have heard that GInnie Berringer from Akron, Ohio, who joined us for Radnilla’s workshop did the lace pattern for the third book. This book will not improve you lacemaking techniques, but it might raise your spirits. -Amy Gibbons

Call for Contributions!
As always, any and all contributions to this newsletter are most welcome and desperately needed. Any news about members, other lacemakers, bobbins, threads, patterns you love, books, ideas, pictures, Internet gleanings-send ’em in and keep ’em corning!

Calendar of Future Events
Sunday, December 2, 2001, 12:00~:00-Demonstration in the Croghan-Schenley Nationality Room at Pitt (call Amy)
Thursday, December 6, 2001, 7:00 P.M.-Regular monthly meeting
Saturday, December 29, 2001, 2:00-4:00-Holiday open house at the church with fellowship, refreshments, and material goodies from Russ of Robin and Russ Handweavers
Saturday, February~, 2002, 10:00 PM.-Regular monthly meeting with a chance to review the study box from IOLI
Thursday, March 7, 2002, 7:00 P~M.-Regular monthly meeting
Saturday, April 6, 2002,10:30 kM.-Annuial meeting with election of officers plus mini-workshop on making Peyote bobbins
Thursday, May 2,2002, 7:00 P.M.-Regular monthly meeting
Thursday, June 6, 2002, 7:00 P.M?-Regular monthly meeting

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