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Tamarack Fiber Arts

Tamarack Fiber Arts is my opportunity to create and share beautiful textiles inspired by nature.

In the western area of North America, the Tamarack is also known as the Lodgepole pine. This majestic tree grows to nearly 100 feet and some are known to live as long as 600 years. The Tamarack has periods of rapid growth and usually can be found between 6,000 and 9,000 feet in elevation. Growing well in a wide range of land formations, environmental conditions, and soil conditions, the Tamarack is known for its straight grained wood which has been used for lodge poles, fence posts and railway ties and is also efficient firewood, often being the last log put on at night. The needles were used for tea, the pitch as a base for medicinal use, and the sugar-rich inner bark was prepared, stored and later used as an important food source.

Having been strongly influenced by Tamarack pines in the Sierra Nevada for many years, I am delighted to have this symbol associated with my goal of producing unique, one of a kind textiles and fiber arts of high quality. Care is taken with each item produced and with each aspect of the process. Just as communities of people came together to utilize all parts of a Tamarack, facilitating community in fiber arts is important to me, too. Teaching others about knitting, spinning, and weaving; bringing fiber enthusiasts together; and bringing mindfulness to our collective fiber arts activities are important aspects of Tamarack Fiber Arts.

 

                  

About

How much better can it get than playing with fiber after being inspired by nature?

I get to create, play with color, and handle beautiful fiber, yarn, and textiles.

An avid knitter for a couple of decades, I followed the usual route to creating my own yarns via spinning, dyeing, and fiber preparation and then fell into the rabbit hole that is weaving. Of course, being part of a community of fiber enthusiasts is a tremendous catalyst. I am a member of Foothill Fibers Guild and the Association of Northwest Weavers Guilds. For many years I have attended conferences and classes in knitting, spinning, fiber preparation, and weaving and I have had to good fortune to attend classes at The Weavers School.  When possible, I help organize fiber arts learning opportunities associated with my local guild. I will keep on learning as long as I breathe.

I’m fortunate to have mostly retired from over 40 years in healthcare so that I can pursue my passion in the fiber arts. And I am most fortunate to have the love, support, and enabling of my partner, Michael.

To my work with fiber I bring my passion for nature, playing with color, peace on earth and within, and teaching. My mission is to create beauty, contribute to peace on earth by cultivating peace within, and to teach what I continue to learn while helping to build community for those interested in the fiber arts.

My two children have fully fledged from the nest, my grandson lives on the other coast, and my first two careers in healthcare are mostly behind me.  Our home is now filled with fiber equipment and supplies and my enabling partner knows how to find me in the rabbit hole when needed.

 

When not weaving, spinning, preparing fiber, or knitting, I love to spend time with my family and to spend time in nature, most often gardening and hiking. I also enjoy photographing nature. Photos on this website were taken by me with the exception of the photos of me, which were taken by Michael.

I fell in love with the Sierra Nevada in my early 20s and after two decades in San Francisco, I moved to the foothills of the Sierra almost 20 years ago. Visits to the Pacific Northwest happen as often as possible.

You can find me on          as diag           

 

Learn

I am delighted to combine my passion for fiber arts with my years of experience in academic and clinical teaching.

KNITTING     

My goal as a knitting educator is to teach not only the basics, but also how to navigate the knitting world, including how to select yarn and needles, and how to read patterns. And to have fun!

I will help you learn how to knit, how to read your knitting, how to repair mistakes, and I will help you learn new knitting techniques such as lace, Fair Isle, cables and more. If you are brand new to knitting I will help you sort through the vast array of knitting resources available today.

You will learn in the comfort of my home in Grass Valley, receive written materials to take home, leave the first lesson with confidence to begin knitting at home, and have the opportunity to connect with other knitters in the community, starting with a knitting group that I co-host on Monday afternoons.

Knitters with some experience may want to learn new techniques and take knitting to the next step. Lessons can be customized to meet your specific needs.

Lessons are designed for individuals. Please contact me if you are interested in group lessons.

Cost

Initial 2-hour lesson with all materials (except your heart, hands and mind): $60

Initial 2-hour lesson without needles and yarn: $45

Subsequent lessons are $15 for sessions designed to meet your needs and lasting at least 1 hour

SPINNING 

My goal is to teach you beginning spinning on a wheel. Perhaps you have a specific spinning goal in mind and need help getting started or maybe you are just drawn to the meditative act that spinning can be and you don’t know where to begin.

I will help you sort through issues of types of wheels, types of fibers, and the many resources available to spinners today. You can rent a wheel or bring your own.

You will learn in the comfort of my home in Grass Valley, receive written materials to take home, and leave the first lesson with enough practice to start spinning at home. You will also have the opportunity to connect with other spinners.

Lessons are for individuals. Please contact me if you are interested in group lessons.

Cost

Initial 2-hour lesson with all materials (except your heart, hands and mind): $75

Subsequent lessons are $15 for sessions designed to meet your needs and lasting at least 1 hour

Wheel Rental: I have a Lendrum upright, double treadle wheel available to rent.

 

WEAVING  

Where to begin with Weaving:  

Weaving can seem mysterious and overwhelming. Learn the language of weaving, how to select a loom, what equipment and materials are really necessary, and where to begin with selecting weaving threads and yarns. Learn about weaving resources available today and how to navigate what often seems like a maze. This is an introduction/orientation for those wanting to begin this journey. In the comfort of my home you will receive written materials and a helping hand to find your way. Cost is $50 for materials and up to 2 hours of instruction.

First steps with your floor loom:

Now you have a loom, what do you do with it and how do you get threads on it to weave with? If you are the new owner of a new or used jack loom, I can help you get started. Lessons are at your home with your equipments. Cost is $45 per 50 minute hour. If you live outside of the immediate Grass Valley/Nevada City area, travel time is included in the cost.

Contact

Tamarack Fiber Arts

Unique handmade items and instruction by

Donna Guyot Johnson      

tamarackfiberarts.com

donna@tamarackfiberarts.com

111 Bank Street #236

Grass Valley, California 95945

530.559.5057