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What’s up in the Handwork Circle?

05 Feb 2022 9:50 AM | Susette Shiver (Administrator)

As everyone knows, but sometimes get confused over, the Handwork Circle at Local Cloth has two different forms.  The Handwork Circle (HC) began just as covid began and when the studio was still located on Coxe Ave.  After an introductory meeting (March 6, 2020) and the beginning of the covid lockdown, we moved to a Zoom format (March 20, 2020).  The Rise of the Zoom World.

While music jams failed to flourish on Zoom except as a social outlet, the Virtual HC florished, on Fridays from 4-6 pm, despite the visual deficits for sharing our work limited by monitors with poor resolution and poor color representation. As a result of the visual frustration, and because we were learning so much from each other and about each other, a blog was born to highlight our doings. Participants could email higher quality pictures of their work.  Check out the earlier blogs about these HC events on this site.  

In May, 2021, we moved to Thursdays from 1-3 pm and then in June we switched to in-person Handwork Circles down at 408 Depot Street.  The new site of LC launched with the June 12, 2021 opening.  This new, expanded dye studio, learning center, Shop Local Cloth store, and resident artist booths is based in the River Arts District (RAD), fantastically across from a free parking lot. There, in the setting of warm, beautiful weather and the wonderful patio to the side of 408 Depot Studio, we saw each other in-person, often for the first time ever.  Alpha, beta, gamma, omicron come and go and so did fall and winter.

Currently, the in-person, masked, sessions on Thursdays 1-3pm is indoors in the LC studio and is hosted by Cecilie (Ceil) Jensen.  NOTE:  the in-person is only on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of the month.  

The 2nd and 4th and occasionally 5th Thursdays of the month, a zoom Virtual HC is held instead of in-person.  I lead this group.  There is overlap with the in-person participants, but the virtual group also incudes those who live too far away, those who can’t leave their home, and those who are avoiding covid/and/or having to wear a mask indoors.  Spring is not so far away now though!

What is fun about the virtual group is that we get peeks into their home/studio space.  We can go find stuff to show as the topic of some type of handwork comes up.  We love to show our work.  It is validating. 

The in-person group similarly likes to show things and you can actually touch it and see the real color and texture.  

Last week a new participant came to the in-person group. Joanna D'Andrea joined our Local Cloth Handwork Circle. We were impressed with her art quilting and embroidery. She was an elementary teacher who took up handwork when she retired ten years ago. The piece with the Swiss flag is based on her high school years boarding in Gstaad, Switzerland. Her triptych is a view out her back windows here in Asheville. Welcome, Joanna!


  • 05 Feb 2022 10:50 AM | Susette Shiver (Administrator)
    I love the detail, colors, and textures of Joanna’s work. The trees are closest to my heart as my work incorporates trees and the view out my windows!!
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