Friday, August 5, 2011

Alumni News = Mary Hays Wins Awards

Mary Hays talks about her rugs 

the two pieces that went to the N.E.W.S. exhibition

what a cutie!  - Mary with her prize rugs

this is the cream-colored rug

this rug is made with 75% natural undyed and mostly handspun wool

 another rug made out of an unravelled sweater from the 1930's

Mary Hays came to visit last week and shared with us her story of submitting some of her recent work to a few local exhibitions.

She decided she wanted to experiment and see if she could copy the structure of navajo blankets in her rugs. Her warp was a standard two ply wool commonly used for rug warps. For one of the rugs her weft was mostly handspun from churro sheep fleece.

She submitted both rugs to the Vermont Weavers Guild exhibition in May. The cream-colored rug won nothing, but the mostly handspun rug won a 2nd in the rug category and also won for Best Use of Wool. The Vermont guild then took both pieces to the New England Weavers Seminar in mid-July.

N.E.W.S. is a gathering of weavers' guilds from around New England; they host five days of workshops and a large exhibition on the campus of Smith College in Northampton, MA every other year. There are many well-known weavers who teach, and many local vendors who attend, such as the American Textile History Museum, the Mayan Hands Foundation, Pro Chemical & Dye, and WEBS.

Mary's cream colored rug won the prize for Best First Time Entrant and the grey rug won the prize for Best Use of Naturally Colored Wool. She was totally thrilled and surprised!

Mary wanted me to mention that she feels it has been tremendously helpful for her to return to the Marshfield School every now and then, to show her evolving work to Kate and Norman and the group of local students here, and to get our feedback about it, because it has given her the confidence to submit her work to juried shows and exhibitions and a wider audience.

Mary is also a writer and lives and works in Corinth with her husband, Steve, and their dog, Woody. She studied with us here at the school during the fall and winter of 2009.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Alison, for a lovely writeup! It is always exciting to come see what everyone at the School is up to, to prowl around and look at what's on the looms and who's doing what and have a nice cup of tea. But mostly, to just soak up the work atmosphere and feel that I'm part of something very fine. ~ Mary