Travels, April 2018
April 2018, there were several destinations on my calendar, Grand Forks, British Columbia, Bissell House, St Louis, Missouri, the Vesterheim Museum, Decorah, Iowa, and a family wedding in California.
I started out travelling to Grand Forks.
I taught diverse braiding techniques to a group of school teachers, Aboriginal Education specialists, in Grand Forks, British Columbia.
Then off to St Louis, Missouri.
I went to St. Louis because I had been asked to have a look at a sprang sash in the keeping of the General Daniel Bissell House in St. Louis, Missouri.
General Daniel Bissell built the house in the early 1800s. He was involved in the military history of the time. His military uniform is part of the collection at the house, including a sprang sash. I brought along two sashes that I had made, to compare and contrast.
The sash is almost 10 ft long, features geometric lace designs, triangles and diamond shapes, and is in excellent condition.
Then on to the Vesterheim Museum in Decorah, Iowa. Sprang has been redlisted by the Norwegian Government, highlighting its cultural signifacance, and the danger of its loss. The Norwegian-American museum in Decorah asked me to teach a 4-day class. I travelled from St Louis to Decorah by way of Minneapolis.
The Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum is contained in several buildings in downtown Decorah, Iowa.
The class covered the basics of sprang, the interlinking stitch, ways to set up, decorative possibilities, and diverse finishing techniques. The 4-day length of the class allowed participants enough time in supported exploration to get comfortable with the technique.
Chief Curator Laurann Gilbertson treated us to a viewing of sprang items from the museum collection.
Then on to California, where I attended a family wedding.
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Carol acknowledges that we are on Treaty 1 territory, the traditional gathering place of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota and Dene people and the traditional homeland of the Métis people. Carol also acknowledges that sprang is part of many indigenous traditions and found in various forms all over the world. Let us re-discover this technique together.
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