Behind the Scenes at Handwoven

This week, we asked Christina Garton, our new Handwoven assistant editor and also a new weaver, to share her experience of how an issue comes together. ––Anita


By this time the September/October 2011 Issue of Handwoven should have safely arrived at subscribers' homes, in bookstores, and weaving shops, and I could not be happier. There are few things better in this world than seeing something you helped create be enjoyed and discussed by thousands of people, and I don't think seeing my words in print will ever lose its thrill.

Spacer 15x15 pixels

John Mullarkey's Controlled Chaos Vest Spacer 10x10 pixels 
Just look at that smile!
Just look at that vest!
Scarf by Celine Gorham  
"Love and an Apricot" by
Celine Gorham 

I learned so much while working on this unique issue, not just about putting together a magazine, but also about the intricacies of weaving. I had my first introduction to card weaving with John Mullarkey's Controlled Chaos vest. That a person can create such intricately beautiful designs simply by twisting cards with holes punched in them, well, it really is magical. Add the fact that people have been card weaving for millennia connects the vest to generations of weavers around the world. 

Plus the model for John's vest is by far my favorite in the issue. How could I not love a vest worn by this man?

What's fantastic about this vest, and about the issue in general is how much it's inspired me as a new weaver. I may not have the supplies to make this vest, but I do plan on trying out cardweaving for myself and using the band to trim a handsewn dress, to create my own semi-handwoven garment. 

In working on my part of this issue, I was also introduced to many fantastic people people from around the weaving world. I got to interview the jovial Tom Knisely after he was named as our Teacher of the Year. Talking to Tom for the first time was like talking to an old friend. He started the conversation by asking me if I was related to television chef Ina Garten (sadly no dinners in Martha's Vineyard for me), and by the end he was giving me directions to The Mannings from my grandmother's house in New Jersey so I could visit next time I travelled back east. 

I also had the privilege of interviewing up-and-coming weaver Celine Gorham whose enthusiasm for weaving is downright contagious. As a former museum educator, it was wonderful for me to talk to somebody who is as passionate about community outreach as Celine is. I hope my article is the first of many in Handwoven to feature her work. 

Spacer 15x15 pixels

Now that the September/October issue is out in the world, I love visiting my LYS and bookstores to see it on the shelf. It makes it feel all the more real to me. I'm also a big fan of the digital edition of Handwoven. As somebody notorious for mangling well-loved magazines beyond use (if I haven't lost them first), I can use the magazine a million times on my laptop without a crease or stain. 

Of course, for me it's time to begin anew. New stories need discovery, new lessons will be learned, and new connections are being made. So thank you all for your patience, encouragement, and most of all for your wonderful stories. Without you there would be no Handwoven


Post a Comment