A free, 3-part online conversational series about the history and future of Canadian fibresheds with Anna Hunter from Longway Homestead (Manitoba) and Nicola Hodges (Sunshine Coast), hosted by Sharon Kallis ( Vancouver).
Wednesday nights 7:00-8:30 pm PST
Nov 3, 10, 17
Recorded with time-limited access. Registration required for each event.
Anna Hunter will share her current research into the history of wool processing, weaving and knitting mills in Canada, including the challenges that led to the industry decline.
Anna Hunter in conversation with Nicola Hodges unpacks the current status of where challenges stand for Canadian textiles. Anna and Nicola discuss how to move beyond the idea that we will alter our fibreshed significantly through niche, small-scale making. So, how do we scale up to a larger industry that has principles based in regenerative land practices?
How do we get “good cloth” into peoples hands, make it the norm and make it accessible beyond a luxury item?
What cross pollinations do we need? The second half of this session will open up to ideas and conversation with participants.
Identifying the threads and connections we can bring together
Our final conversation will begin by using the SWOT* assessment as a tool to understand the national fibreshed as we have identified from the conversation on the 10th. Then the majority of our time together will be as a circle, each participant invited to introduce themselves and share what their needs are, and what they can offer others towards building a more connected and vibrant fibreshed.
Closing: Anna leads us in thinking about what actions we can take as individuals, can we find our peers or those who can use our support to move certain areas of this work forward? How do we collectively leverage our skills and strengths?
*SWOT: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats
Anna Hunter is a first generation sheep farmer and wool mill owner in Eastern Manitoba, Treaty One Territory. Anna, her husband Luke, and their two sons moved to Manitoba from Vancouver BC in 2015. She started a small sheep farm, raising Shetland sheep for their beautiful wool. In 2018 they established a small-scale wool processing mill – the only one of its kind in Manitoba. They process wool and fibre for themselves and other farmers. Anna is passionate about building community and connecting rural fibre farmers with urban consumers, fibre artists and crafters. Anna believes that regenerative agriculture and climate beneficial food and clothing is integral to moving forward as farmers, fibre artists and Manitobans. To learn more about Anna and her farm/wool mill, check out www.longwayhomestead.com
Nicola Hodges is a textile craftsperson and teacher with an interest in design, local textile manufacturing and fibre farming. She taught for Emily Carr University’s Fibershed Field School, mentoring students in the Warping and Weaving cohort. She has worked with EarthHand Gleaners Society since 2017 teaching workshops on fibre processing and spinning as well as led projects exploring hyper-local natural dyes. She recently had the opportunity to train at Long Way Homestead’s spinning mill as well as travel to study various crafts including traditional knitting design, natural dyes, leather tanning and shepherding. She currently lives on shíshálh (Sechelt) and Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) territories in xwesam (Roberts Creek) where she manages a research garden for Maiwa Handprints studying the viability of growing dye crops in this bioregion.
This series draws to a close EartHand Gleaners 2021 project, Weaving Our Community SkillShed: Tending Our Community FibreShed
We have copies of FIBERSHED by Rebecca Burgess available for loan to those in the Vancouver area thanks to the Shumka Centre for Creative Entrepreneurship. Please email earthandgleaners(at)gmail.com if you would like to borrow a book!
Supported by the BC Arts Council resilience funds, Vancouver Park Board: Neighbourhood Matching Fund, EartHand Gleaners Society and the Shumka Centre for Creative Entrepreneurship.