Friday, April 24, 2015

Workshop: 1 Day of Islamic Geometric Design

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: 1 Day of Islamic Geometric Design
Eric Broug

$150 includes 20 lab fee
September 28, - Class Limit 16
Maiwa Loft: Above the Net Loft, Granville Is. Vancouver BC



In today’s world, with ready access to powerful computers, it may be surprising to learn that complex geometric patterns can be made using only a compass and straight edge.

For Islamic artists and philosophers, such designs showed how the complex universe was in truth a reflection of simplicity. 

In this workshop (suited for anyone ages nine  to 99), Eric Broug will give a visual introduction and historical background to the essential design principles. Participants will work on their own designs, some of which may be tessellated to make a bigger composition. Eric joins us from the UK.


Instructor Bio


Eric is an independent author and educator. He also manages a dynamic social media community dedicated to Islamic art and teaches courses on the principles and execution of Islamic geometric design. Largely self-taught in this subject, he obtained his MA in the History of Art and Archaeology at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London. He is widely sought after as a consultant and is involved in several collaborative design projects. Eric joins us from the UK.

Workshop: 2 Days of Islamic Geometric Design - first offering.

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: 2 Days of Islamic Geometric Design - offered twice.
Eric Broug

$250 includes 25 lab fee
September 26, 27, or 29, 30 - Class Limit 16
Maiwa Loft: Above the Net Loft, Granville Is. Vancouver BC





The beauty of Islamic geometric designs, and the breathtaking skill of the craftspeople who created them, are admired the world over. The intricacy and artistry of the patterns can seem almost beyond the powers of human ingenuity.

In this workshop Eric Broug will introduce students to the process by which these complex designs were achieved. The genius of the art lies in its simplicity. Most designs are created using only a ruler and compass—no mathematical equations are needed. 

Eric will showcase inspirational examples from both architecture and the textile world before leading students through a series of designs.

In  this two-day class, students will also be guided through a larger project. By playing to their own strengths and preferences, each student can work independently. Through adherence to some basic rules, the individual works may be combined to show how the group result is much more than the sum of its parts.


Instructor Bio


Eric is an independent author and educator. He also manages a dynamic social media community dedicated to Islamic art and teaches courses on the principles and execution of Islamic geometric design. Largely self-taught in this subject, he obtained his MA in the History of Art and Archaeology at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London. He is widely sought after as a consultant and is involved in several collaborative design projects. Eric joins us from the UK.

Workshop: Knitting, Fulling, Felting

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: Knitting, Fulling, Felting
Aya Matsunaga 

$495 includes 85 lab fee
September 26, 27, 28, 29, 30,  - Class Limit 14
Maiwa East: 1310 Odlum Drive, Vancouver BC



When machine knitting is combined with fulling and felting, exceptional textures with distinctive character are the result. In this five-day workshop, students will gain a full understanding of working with a domestic knitting machine and the short-row knitting technique. 

The class will learn how to translate inspiration into sample textiles while working with a range of fibres from lambs’ wool, merinos, and silks to stainless steel. Aya will demonstrate how to achieve different patterns and geometric forms. Students will progress to the art of fulling and felting. 

Students will design, knit, full, and felt one completed wearable sculpture. They will complete the course with a variety of samples in texture and colour as well as a sketchbook of collected images and ideas. Aya joins us from Japan.


Instructor Bio


Aya Matsunaga is a Japanese textile artist who tempered her formal studies by moving to Nottingham, England, and embracing the UK fibre art scene of the 1990s. Her work is a synergy of knit and felted techniques. Aya Matsunaga knits with multiple dyed fine wool yarns—both by hand and also using a hand-cranked knitting machine.

Workshop: The Nature of Colour

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: The Nature of Colour
Michel Garcia

$395 includes 75 lab fee
September 23, 24, 25,  - Class Limit 16
Maiwa East: 1310 Odlum Drive, Vancouver BC



For dyers, this is our most talked-about workshop. Michel Garcia’s deep knowledge of dye chemistry is communicated in metaphor, humour, and wit. Students learn not only what happens with dyes but why. 

A founder of the Botanical Garden of Dye Plants in Lauris, France, Michel returns each year to share the results of his most recent research. Students can expect a fast-paced workshop packed with ideas, concepts, samples, and demonstrations.

Students will be exposed to a wide range of natural dye knowledge from mordant types to families of tannins to water chemistry. Michel brings the latest research and discoveries from his own experimental studio to share with students.

As the class progresses, students will begin to see all the threads come together—for example, how thickening techniques for dyes can also be used with mordants, how the dye matter gives up its colour, and why it fixes to the cloth (or doesn’t). 

Students with prior experience with natural dyes will benefit the most from this class.


Instructor Bio

Michel Garcia is a French national born in Morocco. He was nineteen when he first discovered natural dyes. Since then he has followed his love of both plants and pigments. In 1998 he formed the association Couleur Garance (Madder Colour). The association hoped to connect young ecologically sensitive artisans with the substantial expertise of an older generation of dyers. Under his direction, Couleur Garance produced over twenty monographs on natural dyes and dye plants.

In 2002 Michel founded the Botanical Garden of Dye Plants at the Château de Lauris. In 2003 an international forum and market for natural dyes was added. A year later a resource centre was established.

In 2006 Michel handed over leadership of Couleur Garance so that he could further pursue his interest in colour and dye techniques. He has published three titles on natural dyes showing the range of shades available and how to obtain them.


Michel teaches and advises internationally on natural colours and dyes.

Workshop: Indigo - The Organic Vat

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: Indigo - The Organic Vat  
Michel Garcia

$295 includes 60 lab fee
September 21, 22 - Class Limit 16
Maiwa East: 1310 Odlum Drive, Vancouver BC



Dyers can spend years mastering the quirks and personality of a specific indigo dye vat. Indigo has a reputation for being the master of the dyer, and sometimes it keeps its magic to itself.  

Michel Garcia comes to the vat with a fresh perspective. A background in botany and chemistry and an intense knowledge of colourants combine with his eagerness to share information. During this workshop, some new possibilities for making a natural vat will be presented using henna, dates, figs, pears, or grapes as reagents. Students will be able to easily establish a fast natural vat that can be used to dye any natural fibre. 

The natural or organic vat can be fed and maintained with many things. The vat can also be maintained and revitalized through natural ingredients. Students will gain an appreciation of the mechanics of the vat and move beyond any single recipe. They will leave with a thorough knowledge of the indigo process and will be able to select the appropriate vat to match their technique.

Michel arrives from France to teach this workshop.


Instructor Bio

Michel Garcia is a French national born in Morocco. He was nineteen when he first discovered natural dyes. Since then he has followed his love of both plants and pigments. In 1998 he formed the association Couleur Garance (Madder Colour). The association hoped to connect young ecologically sensitive artisans with the substantial expertise of an older generation of dyers. Under his direction, Couleur Garance produced over twenty monographs on natural dyes and dye plants.

In 2002 Michel founded the Botanical Garden of Dye Plants at the Château de Lauris. In 2003 an international forum and market for natural dyes was added. A year later a resource centre was established.

In 2006 Michel handed over leadership of Couleur Garance so that he could further pursue his interest in colour and dye techniques. He has published three titles on natural dyes showing the range of shades available and how to obtain them.


Michel teaches and advises internationally on natural colours and dyes.

Workshop: Cloth and Memory - Exploring Memory Cloths

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: Cloth and Memory - Exploring Memory Cloths
Beverly Gordon

$250 includes 20 lab fee
September 23, 24,  - Class Limit 15
Maiwa Loft: Above the Net Loft, Granville Is. Vancouver BC



A “memory cloth” is a piece of handwork that, through the meditative processes of stitching and appliqué, allows us to feel good as well as capture memories or ideas. It may help us preserve and/or release the past, get closer to our own stories (and thus learn about ourselves), keep close to loved ones, and embed new ideas in our consciousness. In this workshop, we will explore the concept of memory cloths by looking at expressions from around the world—e.g., Chilean arpilleras, South African embroideries, Afghan war rugs, American album and memorial quilts, teddy bears made from loved ones’ clothes, and contemporary fibre art. We will use easy, exploratory writing exercises to bring out our ideas, and work on our own cloth in ways that feel comfortable and fun.

No special skills or background are needed—this is a workshop to explore, experiment, and discover. You can stitch, embellish, knit, or otherwise work with fibre and fabric, uncovering images and words that help you express your own voice and experience.  (Embroidery /embellishment instruction will not be provided, but the instructor and the group itself will provide a resource for getting started, feeling confident, solving problems, and stitching something meaningful.) Beverly joins us from the USA.


Instructor Bio

Beverly Gordon retired in 2011 from 30 years as a professor in the Design Studies Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has also worked as a curator and fibre artist. She writes and publishes extensively on textiles.

Workshop: Adventures with World Textiles

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: Adventures with World Textiles
Beverly Gordon

$250 includes 15 lab fee
September 21, 22,  - Class Limit 15
Maiwa Loft: Above the Net Loft, Granville Is. Vancouver BC



We will not produce textiles in this seminar-like class but will delve into an eclectic study of world textile traditions with the goal of discovering, appreciating, and exposing ourselves to new techniques and ideas. The instructor will provide slide shows and videos on selected textile traditions (examples: Ugandan barkcloth, Cuna Indian molas, Wounaan baskets, Central Asian felt, American Indian quill and beadwork, and African wax and “fancy” prints), and students are encouraged to bring textiles they may have and to share what they know about these and other topics. Together, we can better understand the creativity and commonalities of people’s relationships with textiles, the full range of materials and approaches that textile-making may entail, and issues that threaten or enhance fibre traditions (including world markets). No experience or knowledge base is required—just interest and a sense of curiosity. It is inspiring and energizing to share this exploration with a group of fellow textile enthusiasts, and we will all come out feeling more connected, both to one another and to textile-makers throughout the world. Beverly joins us from the USA.


Instructor Bio


Beverly Gordon retired in 2011 from 30 years as a professor in the Design Studies Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has also worked as a curator and fibre artist. She writes and publishes extensively on textiles.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Workshop: The Wayfarer’s Wandercoat Workshop

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: The Wayfarer’s Wandercoat Workshop
India Flint

$795 includes 50 lab fee
September 16, 17, 18, 19, 20,  - Class Limit 14
Maiwa East: 1310 Odlum Drive, Vancouver BC



Participants will hand-stitch a beautiful hooded travel garment with pockets for poems and passports, pens and pencils, hipflasks and notebooks, some visible and some hidden from plain sight. There will be places to keep needles and threads because you never know when you might need them [that’s why those pointy things are called needles]. It will be comfortable enough to sleep in while on the road or in the air (but not behind the wheel), easily removed for scanning when boarding magic carpets, and broad enough to be spread over an unfamiliar bed for cheer if needed. 

The coat (or jacket, if you wish it to be shorter) will be built on a pre-loved garment such as a sturdy long-sleeved T-shirt, cardigan, windbreaker, or linen shirt so that the hard parts (set-in sleeves and so on) are already done. 

We shall gather windfalls and weeds, dye threads for stitching, ecoprint samples that will become pockets, and develop and stitch personal protective signs and perhaps even poetry. During our five days together, we will also create a small notebook to slip into one of the pockets so that we can sally forth into the whirled well prepared.

For those with a leaning toward adventure, an indigo dye vat will be available on the last day. We can bless the garment with a celebratory dip into the protective blue of the heavens [Japanese tradition has it that it not only strengthens cloth but keeps snakes at bay] and watch the subsequent alchemical transformation and development of the colours we have harvested from the gutters.

This class goes beyond stitching and dyeing, embracing design, drawing, storytelling and a little poetry. India joins us from Australia.


Instructor Bio

In 2008, with the publication of her first book, Eco Colour: Botanical Dyes for Beautiful Textiles, India Flint brought a radical new perspective to an ancient practice. She rethought the entire dye process. Her book forcefully and eloquently champions ecologically sustainable plant-based printing processes to give colour to cloth. When it first arrived on the scene, Eco Colour was both an eye-opener and a game-changer. India joins us from Australia.

Workshop: Tactile Notebooks and the Written Word

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: Tactile Notebooks and the Written Word
Sandra Brownlee

$495 includes 40 lab fee
September 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 - Class Limit 14
Maiwa Loft: Above the Net Loft, Granville Is. Vancouver BC



This workshop will help students find their own living language through the creation of a vibrant notebook practice. 

The main objective of this workshop is to support you in establishing a dynamic, tactile notebook practice that is meaningful and rewarding. You will use your notebook as a reflective space and mobile studio in which you document and give expression to your daily experiences. 

Motivated by haptic considerations, we will use all of our senses to stimulate and awaken perception, guide the making process, and enhance the way you communicate both visually and verbally. Throughout the workshop, we will create tactile pages, playing with materials, techniques, and words to make concrete the vital elements of our sensory experience. 

Each day there will be a notebook sharing, a period for writing, an introduction to the day’s topic, and a hands-on workshop. Sandra Brownlee joins us from Nova Scotia.


Instructor Bio

Sandra Brownlee has exhibited her work extensively throughout North America in both solo and group exhibitions since the late 1970s. Recent exhibitions include a solo exhibition at the David Kaye Gallery in Toronto, GGVMA Award exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada, and Innovators and Legends: Generations in Textiles and Fibers organized by the Muskegon Museum of Art.

Sandra Brownlee has earned her MFA in Fibers from Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and her BFA from the NSCAD University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. She has received numerous awards including the 2014 Governor General Visual and Media Arts Saidye Bronfman Award, a Canada Council B Grant, and a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. Sandra joins us from Nova Scotia.

Workshop: Made in Japan: Transforming Meaning Through Innovation

Registration Opens June 22 at 10am.

2015 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Workshop: Made in Japan: Transforming Meaning Through Innovation
Diana Sanderson

$75 includes 10 lab fee
September 14, - Class Limit 18
Maiwa Loft: Above the Net Loft, Granville Is. Vancouver BC



From WWII until the mid-seventies, “made in Japan” was synonymous with inexpensive mass production. That perception was dramatically shifted by people like Junichi Arai who re-articulated an approach to making that emphasized innovation, hand manipulation, and  high quality. The fabrics that emerged from this shift were used by a new generation of designers to catapult Japanese fashion onto the world stage.

Ann Sutton admired and collaborated with Arai for three decades. In the process she collected over two hundred pieces from swatches to scarves, shawls, and garments. Diana Sanderson acquired the collection in 2013 with the promise to make the collection available to textile artists and the broader public. With the endorsement of Junichi Arai and Reiko Sudo, Diana Sanderson, Darlene Ochotta, Carly Hulse, and Amanda Wood have been researching and documenting the textiles, amassing a wealth of technical material and background. During the salon they will share much of what they have learned.

Participants will spend the day immersing themselves in the history and culture of Junichi Arai and the Nuno Corp. Explore this collection with opportunities to touch and examine individual pieces.


Instructor Bio

Diana Sanderson has been owner of the Silk Weaving Studio for the last 29 years. She studied weaving with Ann Sutton in the early eighties and has been inspired by Junichi Arai ever since. Diana spearheads the collaboration between Maiwa and the Silk Weaving Studio. Multiple trips to Japan have deepened her knowledge, fascination, and understanding of contemporary Japanese textiles.