María José… what can I say other than I feel so blessed that she has come into my life. I remember the first day we met, not many months ago. I could tell at first glance that she could find a love for and a life in the world of textiles. Shortly after we met, she picked up a pair of knitting needles, and as far as I can tell, she hasn’t put them down since… except when she is at the loom or dye pots.

I was lucky enough to have MJ (as we call her) in two of my Southwestern-style Tapestry Classes. Shortly there after, I asked her to be my first apprentice. Timing may have been perfect, or maybe I just see such potential in her that I couldn’t resist.

After a couple days at the dye studio, prepping yarn and dyeing what we could, I said to MJ , “So that’s the gist of it”, thinking she had learned quite a bit and may not want to come dye more in the freezing cold and potential snow storms. “Do you want to learn more?”, I asked. With an eager look on her face she nodded and said something along the lines of “Of course! I’ll be here manana!” The smile that spread across my face couldn’t express how happy this made me. Her words, as we stood there freezing while the last color struck in the pots, made me realize I had chosen the perfect apprentice.

I would like to introduce you to María José…

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María José Urbina Estrada

MJUE Bio

María José Urbina Estrada

My name is María José Urbina Estrada. I was born and raised in Santiago, Chile. In the past three years, I have been blessed with a nomadic lifestyle which has taken me to many different places on this Earth.

I found Taos two years ago and I just recently came back to make it my home. In this new stage of my Path, I found myself loving and enjoying yarn, needles, and wool. In this way, weaving found me.

MJ Weaving 1

María José first weaving, from our class Neptune, A Study in Building. Photo taken at Weaving Southwest @ Town Hall.

Being from a place so far away, where weaving is so alive, it is ironic to me that this passion has found me here. It is further ironic because I find weaving so deeply beautiful, however it never caught my attention before now.

MJ Weaving 2

María José second weaving, from our class Habitat, A Study in Verticals. Photo taken at Weaving Southwest @ Town Hall.

I am a translator by profession, and in the process of growing in this area, I have learned five languages. Even though I am just starting to learn how to weave, I feel it as an instrument to speak a new language. More so, a new way of manifestation, a new start, and finally a tool of ancient discovery.

Ciao,
Teresa

PS What do you think of MJ’s work? Do you think she has as much potential as I do? We would love to hear what you think! Please leave a comment…

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The lovely nurse by day, mother of three, Cheryl Demas, manages to produce beautiful rugs and blankets… in her spare time. (This is where I would normally insert a smiley face.) Though her style is not necessarily in the realm of Southwestern-style tapestry weaving, the beauty of her work and her passion for weaving have brought her to exhibit as an artist at Weaving Southwest for many years now.

Cheryl uses our Rug Yarn and Apparel Yarns, along with a verity of other fibers, including chenille, to create beautiful weavings that can be used as rugs (in low traffic areas), blankets or wall hangings. Seeing her work displayed in a space with tall ceilings for our show, Weaving Southwest @ Town Hall, made me realize the full potential of these weavings. The beauty and texture in the fringe alone are enough to turn anyone’s head.

I would like to introduce you to the wonderful Cheryl Demas…

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Cheryl Demas

CD Bio

Cheryl Demas

I have been a weaver for thirty years. I discovered “the loom” in Creede, CO, where I spent every summer of my childhood. The moment I saw my first loom, I was fascinated and hooked on the possibilities that a loom and I could produce. As a lover of rugs and blankets, that has always been my passion on the loom. I have been in New Mexico for thirty years, raised three children here, went to the University of New Mexico and received my bachelors of Science in Nursing.

CD Amythist

Amethyst by Cheryl Demas. Photo taken at Weaving Southwest @ Town Hall.

I have always been intrigued with Weaving Southwest and was delighted to join the gallery in 2006. It has been a joy and a pleasure to work with Teresa Loveless, the granddaughter of Rachel Brown. Teresa has done a splendid job of taking over the gallery and promoting my work. She’s a talented weaver and entrepreneur and a joy to work with. I hope you find my work interesting, comforting and pleasing.

Ciao,
Teresa

PS Have you had the pleasure of seeing one of Cheryl’s pieces in person? Does that fringe make you as happy as it does me? We would love to know what you think! Leave a comment to let us know…

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The wonderful Kay Harris came into our life a couple years back, purchasing large amounts of our 2-Ply Tapestry Yarn to weave afghans on a Weave-It Loom . Though I have been weaving since I was a kid, I had never seen the possibilities of a loom like this. A simple peg loom used to create beautiful throws? This opened the door in my mind to the immense possibility of simplicity.

Kay weaves small squares on this peg loom, stitches them together to create a blanket and cross stitches beautiful designs on them, following instructions from a patten book she acquired in her youth. Our 2-Ply Tapestry Yarn works perfect for these afghans, allowing for a subtle change with each band of color.

KH Weave It

Kay’s pattern book

Shortly after I met Kay and fell in love with the peg loom, Schacht Spindle Co. came out with the Zoom-Loom …a modern and very sturdy version of the Weave-It Loom. These looms are great for travel, making it easy for weavers to weave in any place they are. They are perfect for knitters, trying to use up scraps left over from large projects. And, of course, they are great for children. These simple looms are a great way to fall in love with weaving.

I would like to thank Kay for introducing me to the possibilities of the peg loom! Meet the wonderful Kay Harris…

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Kay Harris

KH Weaving 1

Kay’s first afghan

I grew up in Denver and have lived in Taos for fourteen years. After I graduated from college I joined the “Friendly Skies of United Airlines” as a flight attendant. It was at that time I discovered the 4″ Weave-It Loom and made a couple of afghans.  And then, when I had a family, I did needlepoint for 40+ years.

Two years ago (now I am in my 80s) I found the loom and rushed to Weaving Southwest.

I am working on my third afghan and have yarn for three more! I guess you might call me an optimist!!

KH Weaving 2

One of Kay’s afghans hanging at our Town Hall exibit. Photo taken at Weaving Southwest @ Town Hall.

Ciao,
Teresa

PS What do you think of Kay’s afghans? Have you wove on a peg loom before? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment to share your thought…

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