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Leon Burman

Join us for Weftival

By admin 19.03.2024

Join us at Whitchurch Silk Mill for our second Weftival event, where you can meet a community of textile and weaving professionals and learn all about the diverse types of weaving and textiles through talks, demonstrations, production tours, weaving exhibition, and pre-bookable workshops on Friday 5 & Saturday 6 July 2024, from 10.30 am – 4 pm.

On Friday, July 5, visitors can see a pre-recorded talk from special guest Janet Philips, a handweaver, fabric designer, and author of ‘Designing Woven Fabrics’, which was first published in March 2008 and is used by students across the UK as they learn to weave during their university courses.

Visitors can also meet Meg Stavaru, the Production Skills Manager at one of the oldest woollen mills in the UK. Coldharbour Mill has been in continuous production since 1797, and was originally owned by world-renowned textile producers Fox Brothers, the Mill took fleece from around the world and transformed it into yarn, cloth, and textiles. Please check our website and social media for more talks to be announced soon.

On Saturday, July 6, a small craft fair will showcase textile makers and weavers. They will all be available to discuss their practices and why they love their craft. Items will also be available to purchase.

Some companies featured in this craft fair are; Mac and Weave by Char, a crafter from Hampshire. Everything is handmade and made to order using natural eco-friendly products wherever possible.

Felt Things by Hannah Farrant. A felting artist from Hampshire. She makes handcrafted needle-felted friends, which are made to make you smile. Felt Things also offers needle felting kits so that she can share the joy of this beautiful craft with others.

Our fabulous volunteer team at Whitchurch Silk Mill will run a children’s crafts area for those aged ten and younger.

On both Days of the event, visitors can pre-book on Workshops such as 4 Shaft Weaving sessions by Whitchurch Silk Mill and 1-hour sessions to learn how to weave. Visitors can also see the Silkewoman, Sue is a demonstrator and practitioner of insanely time-consuming historic silk work. She also loves teaching these ancient braiding skills to anyone interested. Drop-in braiding workshops will be available on both days, and they are suitable for ages 8+.

Other Demonstrations happening during this event on both days are:

  • Warping demos by Whitchurch Silk Mill. Drop by at the allocated time to see how you wind a warp on a warping mill.
  • Darning demos by Be from Whitchurch Silk Mill. Drop by at the allocated time to learn about Make Do and Mend.
  • Spinning demos from the Kennet Valley Guild. Drop by at any time to watch how you spin, and they might even let you have a go!
  • Handweaving demos from the Kennet Valley Guild and another special guest, to be announced soon, will be held. Drop by at any time to see how cloth is made.

We will also have the Silk Mill Production Tours where you can go behind locked doors and onto the weaving floor, Tours need to be booked in advance.

There will also be a ‘must-see’ Weaving Exhibition during this event when Janet Phillips will be showcasing some of her handwoven pieces. There will also be a display from Weavers of Whitchurch Silk, where for the first time ever, you will get to see what past and present Whitchurch Weavers have woven outside the Mill.

Tickets for this event are £5 each for adults and children aged 5 – 16 years per day, under 5 yrs. are FREE. Tickets can be purchased online in advance via our website What’s on page.

Weftival – Whitchurch Silk Mill

This event is in aid of Living Weaving Heritage at the Mill. Whitchurch Silk Mill Trust Charity No. 900621

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