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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Handwoven Excellence: An Interview with Nutfield Weaver

This week's interview features Kate Kilgus of Nutfield Weaver. Kate is located in Londonderry, New Hampshire, home of Stonyfield Farms Yogurt.

Tell us a little about yourself.
I have been weaving for over ten years. When I was about 30, my husband signed me up for a six week "Introduction to Weaving" class, thinking that I might enjoy an occasional creative diversion (our boys were 1 and 3 at the time). It was love from the first go. I felt instantly at home while sitting at the loom. I also like to spin and to knit, but I do this for personal enjoyment (I make a pair of handknit for my husband every Christmas). I also like to run and have completed 3 half-marathons. I enjoy mountain hiking and spending time at the coast with my family.

What special things do you create for weddings?
My handwoven lace wedding accessories include ring bearer pillows, petal cones, and wedding purses. I'm gradually working some clothing into my line. I hope to have a bridal shawl available by late summer. A client recently asked me to make a guest book cover for her, so I'm working on these as well.

Who or what sparked your interest in making wedding-related items?
I stumbled onto the wedding accessory path by accident. I'd dabbled with dishtowels and scarves, but there were already a lot of these items available on Etsy and my Etsy success was confined to the occasional "heart." In December 2008 I wove some lace fabric for sachets to give as gifts for Christmas. The sachets were really well-received by family and friends, so I figured that I might have found something special there. I designed my first ring bearer pillow in April 2009 and haven't made a dishtowel since.

What is a little known fact, or something unique about your work that is interesting?
I work with very fine threads. My spot weave lace fabric has a "sett" of 30 ends per inch, meaning that if I want to weave fabric that is 20" wide, I need to manage at least 600 threads during the warping process. It takes me 8-10 hours to dress my loom -- and then I can start weaving!

If you are married, what’s the one thing you wish you had for your wedding that you didn’t?
I would have loved to have worn a fascinator or any of the other pretty hair accessories that are created by Etsy artisans these days.

What is your favorite wedding song?
Franz Schubert's "Ave Maria." My parents had that piece played for their wedding in 1965, and my husband and I had it played during our ceremony as well in 1990.

What is your favorite part of the wedding journey?
Personally, I liked shopping for my dress - I wore a Priscilla of Boston white cotton lace gown.

What advice can you share for all the brides getting married this year?
Well, my husband and I have been married for nearly 20 years and we're raising two boys. There have been some bumps in the road, but overall it has been a great ride. Don't sweat the small stuff - I guess that has helped us out.

What is your perfect honeymoon spot?
My husband and I married young; I was 2 weeks out of college. We were 22 and didn't have a lot of money. We got into our car and drove to North Carolina, where we stayed at a charming Bed & Breakfast in Dillsboro. We'd love to go back there someday.

If you could pick anyone famous that would purchase your items for their wedding, who would they be?
I'm always thrilled to have one of my Nutfield items chosen by a bride for her wedding. However, in fairness to the question, I would be really pleased to have one of my accessories selected by Barbara Pierce Bush, President Bush's daughter, should she decide to marry someday.

If you could choose 1 item from your shop that you wish every bride could have, what would it be?
If every bride could have one item from my shop, I'd want her to have one of my tissue holders. It is something that can be carried all of the time and could serve as a long-term visual and tactile of her wedding day. I carry one of these around in my purse; it makes me feel pretty, even on my worst days.

Links where we can find out more about your work:
I have a wee blog where people can find out more about my work: Nutfield Weaver Blog
I'm also on Twitter at Nutfield Weaver Twitter Link.


agoodbuild said...

love the petal cone! great interview!


Nutfield Weaver said...

Thanks! Here's a link to my blog:
Cheers, Kate :)

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