All Good Tales Must Come To An End

Posted By KMcPherson on May 22, 2011

Spin Me A Story Weave Me A Tale – CNCH 2011

The story began as spring green dressed the hills of Sutter Creek for 120 fiber artisans, representing 26 guilds, who wound their way into this “Jewel of the Mother Lode” for the annual Conference of Northern California Handweavers.  Gathering their goods from Nancy Fisher, our registrar queen, folks settled in for what promised to be a weekend full of surprises, new skills to be honed, and gatherings of friends. Friday evening’s froggies were settled into Lillypad Gallery by the “Keeper of the Frogs, Janice Johnson, and the bidding began. Thirty-four fabulous fiber frogs found new homes and raised funds for the CNCH scholarship. “The Ghost of Mark Twain’ master storyteller of all time, McAvoy Layne, entertained “in the round” with tales of adventure and frogs. The evening continued with the gentle “croaking” of froggy voices outside along the creek as we sent our athletically inclined frogs flying into the air aimed for the frog pond. Frogs flipped, flew, shot straight up, and sometimes sought refuge through auto windows.  Folks reclined for the evening with hotel windows ajar to welcome the “singing” of their new found froggy friends into their slumbering dreams of workshops to come.

The bustle of spinners, weavers, dyers, authors, and basketmakers filled the hotel early Saturday morning as the workshops began.  Under the careful guidance of 10 master teachers assembled by Stephenie Gaustad, participants intent on their projects, worked through the day to accomplish their goals. As the sun set, we popped corks, poured fine wines from the region, nibbled on chocolate frogs, and Alden Amos, gathered us round for an adventure with rope. With a bit of history and technical info, he drafted participants from the audience to “get a rope!” Fibers of all sorts were twisted and plyed and “wild ropes” were born!

Under the darkness of night, rains began to fall on this adventure wetting everyone’s appetite to finish quickly before time ran out Sunday afternoon. With projects tucked neatly away, these artisans packed their bags to return home under the thundering skies of this little hamlet in the Mother Lode. Volunteers, the framework of our story, began to work again. Volunteers whose ideas, craftsmanship, organization, and endless hours allowed this adventure tale to be told. So this story comes to an end, but you can be a part of the sequel. Look for it May 18 – 20 of 2012 in Oakland.

End Of This Tale's Trail