Handweavers Guild of America Biennial Convergence Conference
Want to keep up with everything going on in the world of weaving? Make sure to check out the What’s Happening department in every issue of Handwoven. The following article about the Handweavers Guild of America’s biennial Convergence conference is an excerpt from our May/June 2018 issue. Happy Weaving! —Christina
Once every two years, weavers from around the world make the pilgrimage to the Handweavers Guild of America (HGA) Convergence conference for a week of fiber-related workshops, field trips, shopping, and speakers. Most importantly, though, it’s an opportunity for weavers to meet, network, and simply spend time with others who speak the same language and understand the “weaver’s handshake.”
If this sounds like heaven to you, you’re in luck—there’s still time to make plans to attend the 2018 HGA Convergence. This year, the conference will take place in Reno, Nevada, at the Peppermill Resort. HGA has put together a diverse schedule filled with workshops and classes led by heavyweights of the weaving world including Rosalie Neilson, John Mullarkey, Daryl Lancaster, and Robyn Spady. Classes cover a wide range of subjects, and although some do require previous weaving knowledge, there are plenty for new weavers or anyone wanting to pick up a new skill such as dyeing or kumihimo braiding.
Convergence offers much to do outside the classroom as well. You can wander any of the five juried exhibits, attend the City Lights/Festive Nights runway fashion show, or take in one of the many special presentations, including “Those Fabulous MGM Costumes,” a presentation by Karen Burns on the costumes used in the MGM cabaret show Hollywood Hello—A Tribute to the Magic World of Movies. There will also be a kitchen towel exchange.
No weaving conference would be complete without a marketplace, and Convergence doesn’t disappoint. Browse the booths and stock up on yarn, handcrafted weaving tools, or maybe that 16-shaft loom you’ve had your eyes on. More than just a shopping venue, the marketplace also serves as the stage for demonstrations, a sheep to shawl contest, a fashion show, and more.
Outside the convention center and hotel, you can visit the always-popular juried show by Complex Weavers, Complexity 2018: Innovations in Weaving, at the Reno City Hall Metro Gallery, and the American Tapestry Alliance will display its (unjuried) show Biggest Little Tapestry in the World at the Northwest Reno Library.
General registration for the event closes on June 15 and reopens on July 5 at the conference site, where last-minute attendees can register for the conference or simply purchase a day pass. For more about Convergence 2018, including hotel information, class registration, purchasing tickets for special events, and how to enter the towel exchange, visit www.weavespindye.org/convergence-2018.
July 6–12, 2018 at the Peppermill Resort in Reno, NV
Featured Image: Convergence 2018 will be held in Reno, Nevada where participants can enjoy workshops, fashion shows, exhibits and more. At left, coat by Inge Dam; top right, shibori cloth by Linda Hartshorn. PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE HGA