At the Nome SchoolHouse, one of the things we enjoy the most is teaching people all about the lost art of fiber work. From needle felting, to spinning, to crochet, knitting, weaving, and wet felting, the fiber arts are a skill, no, a lifestyle, like no other.
The majority of people today don’t know how to perform any of the fiber arts. Those who do are often limited to one or two skills. It’s our joy to help people just like you experience the fiber arts right at the newly opened Nome SchoolHouse!
Here’s a taste of fiber and just some of what you can do with it:
Needle felting uses wool roving and barbed felting needles to create a wool fabric. The process is fun and the results are beautiful! To perform needle felting, collect everything you need, including wool, felting needles, cookie cutters, pad, and finger protectors. Thin the wool and put it in a cookie cutter. Stick the needle in the wool and pull it out repeatedly, over the fiber and along all edges. Turn the wool over and repeat. Continue until the wool has become fabric. It can really be that simple to get started, you can find some of our favorite beginning projects here.
Spinning is the process of turning the fiber into yarn. To spin, you will need to gather fibers, such as wool or cotton. Twist a spindle while using your hands to pull the fiber onto it. By pulling and twisting, the fiber will become yarn. Spinning can be done using a drop spindle, just your hands, a spinning wheel or the magnificent machines now installed in our very own mill. No matter how it is done, there is a sense of magic – and accomplishment – when you turn fibers into yarn!
Crochet is all about simple beauty. Using just a hook and yarn, you can create welcomed and practical goods of all kinds, including scarves, hats, blankets, and more. Gather crochet hooks and yarn, make a slip knot in the yarn and put it on your hook. Learn the basic chain stitch and practice rows of crochet stitching before you move on. There are so many advanced stitches, your education can continue for a long time to come.
Much like crochet, knitting is a useful skill that turns yarn into beautiful and useful goods. Gather your knitting needles (you’ll need two instead of just one) and yarn. Practice basics like casting on and the garter stitch repeatedly until you’re ready to learn more. We particularly love softer yarns in medium weights for scarves. The larger the weight, the bigger the needle you can use and the projects move along swiftly. Check out this beautiful alpaca from Dakota Fiber Mill for your next project.
Weaving uses a loom, warp thread, and weft thread. Find a loom that suits your space and budget, and set up your thread as you prepare to learn weaving. Once your loom is set up, be creative as you weave through the thread on the loom. There are many different techniques you can use for weaving, so take the time to learn about each one and which will suit each project best.
Wet felting is used to create felt by tangling fibers together. It uses soap, warm water, and agitation as a way to bring in the various fibers. You will need your wool roving, as you dip it in warm water, and then pull it out to rub and shape it between your warm hands.
Attend Or Host Your Retreat at The Nome Schoolhouse
The Nome SchoolHouse is a retreat center with a number of scheduled events. It’s a great place to hold your next event. Coming up at the retreat center is the Taste of Fiber event. During this incredible event, we’ll introduce people to all of the fiber arts, enabling them to try new things.
If you’ve ever wanted to try one or more of the fiber arts, now’s your chance. Get your lesson and personalized guidance so you can learn the lost arts. We can’t wait to see you there!