Instructors at Taproot Video

Joan Ruane

Joan Ruane was first a professional teacher but while living in New Zealand in the early 1970’s, she fell in love with spinning. Returning home to Florida, she discovered cotton fiber was her fiber of choice. Since 1980, Joan has been promoting cellulose fibers and teaching spinning classes throughout the U.S., Canada, UK, Australia and New Zealand. Active in local and regional Guilds, she has also owned and operated fiber shops in both Tallahassee, Florida and Tucson, Arizona.

Joan has published cotton newsletters, written articles for fiber magazines and has published three teaching DVD’s; Cotton Spinning Made Easy, Cotton Spinning with A Takli and Spinning Hemp. Her book on Hand Spinning Cotton is an updated version of Harry and Olive Linder original book. Joan’s Beginning Cotton Spinning is a great book for beginners.

Since 1998, Joan has been giving lectures on the importance of hemp for not only fiber but also why it can help save the planet. Plant fibers are her specialty and she loves teaching every chance she gets. Be it cotton, flax, hemp, bamboo, ramie or any of the eco-friendly fibers; ask Joan and she is always willing to discuss these fibers with you. Joan’s web site is filled with lots of useful information regarding cellulose fibers and how to spin and treat plant fibers.

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Marilyn Romatka

Marilyn Romatka has a passion for Folk Art. She has been teaching spinning, weaving, and many other ethnic crafts to both children and adults throughout the Pacific Northwest, as well as national Crafting Conferences, for many years. Marilyn's passion is to kindle the love for the beauty that we can create with just our hands and a few simple tools. Her lessons include detailed and clear instructions as well as cultural and/or historical background, and in so doing provide context and a frame of reference for the skill. Marilyn's videos are not only a perfect way to learn the skill yourself, but also a wonderful resource if you plan to teach the skill to a group of children or young adults, whether it's in a school class, at a birthday party, to your boy- or girl-scout troop, or any other occasion. Her background in science makes her teaching style organized and clear; her style gives the class zing.

Learn more about Marilyn and the folk arts she teaches at her website or her facebook page. Marilyn also sells kits containing the materials for select classes. Visit her online shop for convenient one-stop materials shopping.

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John Marshall

John Marshall has been sharing his interest in Japan for over fifty years. After developing an inter-curriculum unit on Japanese culture while still in Junior High School, John went on to apprentice under traditional artists in Japan. His passion is sharing his love for this culture through traditional crafts and cultural attitudes. John has exhibited his artwork around the world, teaches regularly at home and abroad for museums, guilds, universities, and museums. John is very much looking forward to sharing with an even broader audience through Taproot Video.

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Terry Flynn

Terry Newhouse Flynn is a textile artist and art educator who is fascinated with the myriad ways that people, across time and cultures, have found ways to create both functional and artistic work with thread. This journey led her to explore the braiding arts of Japan and the Andean cultures of Peru and Bolivia.

In the 1990s, Terry owned a yarn shop and teaching studio that specialized in weaving, knitting, and kumihimo. She creates garments, accessories, and sculptures that combine her interests in these arts. That experience deepened her understanding of yarn, color interaction, and designing teaching programs. She returned to school in 2000 earning a BFA in Fiber (2004) and a M.A.T. in Art Education (2005) from Maryland Institute College of Art.

Terry has worked with Rodrick Owen since 1993, coauthoring two books: Andean Sling Braids, New Techniques for Textile Artists (2016), and Sling Braiding Traditions and Techniques from Peru, Bolivia and Around the World (Nov. 2017). Her articles on weaving have been published in Handwoven Magazine. Terry has taught and co-taught braiding and weaving in many venues and is known for her patience and ability to show students how to make the learning process easier. In her “other life” she is an art teacher who strives to make artmaking accessible and engaging for students with special needs.

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Laverne Waddington

Laverne Waddington has been learning to weave on simple looms with indigenous teachers in South America since 1996. In her home in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, she draws on ethnic design influences from around the world to create pieces on a backstrap loom using the various techniques and structures she has studied in South America.

In 2010 she published her first book on one of her favorite warp-faced patterning techniques, Andean Pebble Weave, which was followed by More Adventures in Warp-faced Pick-up Patterns in 2012.

Her articles on backstrap weaving and indigenous textiles have appeared in Handwoven and Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot.

She has shared her skills and experiences with many visitors to Bolivia over the years and now reaches a global audience with her weaving tutorials and travel tales on her blog. She provides online advice and support to weavers through forums such as Ravelry and teaches and speaks at guilds and textile conferences around the world.

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Annie MacHale

At the age of seventeen, Annie MacHale first discovered the inkle loom, sparking a lifelong love affair. She built her first loom in 1976 with the help of her dad and a library book. Since then she’s woven miles of bands. She loves to play with color and pattern and finds the inkle loom a very satisfying way to do this. Annie is known to many through her blog, ASpinnerWeaver.com. The popularity of her patterns shared there have led to the publication of a book, “In Celebration of Plain Weave: Color and Design Inspiration for Inkle Weavers”.

To learn more about Annie, you can visit her blog.

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Joanne Calkins

Joanne Calkins has been fascinated by the Guatemalan Mayan dress, textiles, and culture since first sight in 1975. She traveled extensively in Guatemala during the 1990's with her husband camping, taking weaving lessons, collecting and documenting traditional costumes, and writing stories. Since then she has been the leader of twelve home-building groups with Habitat for Humanity and four arts tours to Guatemala. Joanne grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and currently resides in Santa Cruz, California. She taught high school history and bilingual elementary school in California. She holds a BA and MA from the University of New Mexico.


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Kris Leet

Kris Leet has been tablet weaving and teaching for over 40 years. Her current research and weaving obsession is the Iron Age and Medieval tablet woven bands, techniques, and tools. She is co-author, with Linda Malan, of the book The Willful Pursuit of Complexity, and author of Tablet Weaving at the Dawn of the Iron Age: The Verucchio Twist Patterned Bands, In Praise of Complexity: A Comparison of Modern and Medieval Tablet Weaving, Decoding Archaeological Textiles, One Loom or Two: An Foundational Myth Explored, and A Reconstruction of a Late-14th Century Tablet Woven Tubular Band. She holds a Master of Social Work degree from the University of South Florida, and was a child and family therapist for many years.

Kris says: "Like my grandmother, I came to art late in life. Although I learned to weave in 1971, I was a fine arts student (painting, metalwork, clay) in the mid-seventies, and had my first art show (textiles and mixed media) in the late seventies, I did not come to understand art as my vocation until my fifties. I choose to work with my hands. I am touched by everything that I manipulate; the work and I exchange energy, and we are both changed by the process."

Kris works in several mediums: fiber, gourds, coiled basketry, leather, bookbinding, embroidery, applique, and metal.

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Lucy Neatby

Lucy has been an adventurous knitter since she was 17. She is originally from the UK, where she was a navigating officer in the Merchant Navy. She now lives in Nova Scotia. The Fleece Artist in Halifax, her LYS, gave her the opportunity to teach some classes, and she discovered her passion for sharing the engineering marvels of knitting. She has not stopped spreading the joy of Happy Stitches in the 25 years since, finding ingenious and intriguing ways to expand traditional techniques.

She is known for her colourful appearance and her friendly, detailed, technique-rich knitting patterns, and her particular fondness for double-layer knitting. She has written three books; Cool Socks Warm Feet, Cool Knitters Finish in Style and A Little Book of BIG Holes for Hand-knitters! and has filmed 16 DVD titles, all of which will become available on Taproot Video. She has five on-line classes with Craftsy.com: Foundations of Double Knitting, My First Socks, Fearless Knitting, Next Steps in Socks and Sock Knitalong 2016.

She also annually offers an unusual knitting camp either on Tancook Island off Nova Scotia, or sometimes much further afield. Neatby enjoys trying to dispel the myth that only sedentary, quiet people in rocking chairs knit: she loves cycling, down-hill skiing, quilting, colourful home improvement and narrow-boating on the historic UK canal system. Visit Lucy at LucyNeatby.com

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Linda Hendrickson

After years of working in the communications field, Linda took her first weaving lesson at Ruthie’s Weaving Studio in Portland on November 1, 1984, a date that “truly changed my life”. She started teaching tablet weaving in 1992, and became interested in ply-split braiding after taking a workshop with Peter Collingwood in 1993. All the years since then, she has focused steadfastly on these two rather obscure fiber techniques.

She has self-published several instruction books, written dozens of articles for fiber-related publications, taught workshops for conferences and guilds across North America and in England, and exhibited her work internationally.

To learn more about Linda Hendrickson visit her website.

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Rodrick Owen

Rodrick Owen lives in Oxford England. In 1980 trained as a mature student at the London College of Furniture, completing the Creative Textiles Program. He remained at the college as a tutor. His textile work developed from his research begun while at college, covering both Pre-Hispanic Peruvian braids and Japanese Kumihimo. In 1984 he received a Winston Churchill Fellowship to study braiding in Japan. Rodrick has taught and exhibited his work in the United Kingdom, the United States, and Japan. He has also taught in Holland, France, Belgium, and Australia.

In 1987 he met Jack Lenor Larsen in London and was invited to send work for exhibition at the American Crafts Museum, New York, and at the Textile Museum in Washington DC. He has published four books. Braids 250 Patterns from Japan, Peru and Beyond published by Cassell and Interweave Press in March 1995, reprinted by Unicorn Books and Lacis, and was translated and published in German. (Geflochtene Kordeln und Tressen: ein Anleitungsbuch mit u?ber 250 Mustern, by a Swiss publisher (Haupt Verlag). Victorian Video invited him to make a video, Kumihimo - Japanese Braiding, released in 1999. His book on takadai braiding, Making Kumihimo Japanese Interlaced Braids was published by the Guild of Master Craftsmen in 2004. The third and fourth books were written with Terry Flynn. Sling Braids of Andes - A New Approach, in 2016, and Sling Braiding Traditions and Techniques in 2017. Both were published by Schiffer Publishing. His first book Braids 250 Patterns from Japan, Peru and Beyond is now available in 2021 as an eBook.

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Carol James

Carol James has always been interested in playing with strings and is of the opinion that anywhere is a good place to weave. She was introduced to fingerweaving by a Québecois in 1981, and it was love at first sight. Her passion for the technique had earned her the name ‘SashWeaver’. Seeing the name, military re-enactors asked her for reproduction sashes … sprang sashes, and she had to explore that technique as well.

To better understand these items, she maps out the patterns, and has made replicas of some of these items for clients including George Washington’s Mount Vernon, the German Archaeological Institute, and the Norwegian Army Museum.

Happy to share her knowledge, and hoping to provide an easier learning-curve for others, she agreed to teach. Her students encouraged her to publish the handouts she created for them. A very patient teacher of students in Canada, the US, New Zealand, and Europe, she is the author of numerous articles and three books: Fingerweaving Untangled and Sprang Unsprung and a new book of Sprang Lace Patterns.

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Peter Collingwood

Peter Collingwood, 1922-2008, was an innovative weaver, author, and teacher with a world-wide reputation.

He was a famed master craftsman and the author of several authoritative works on weaving and other interlacement techniques. His work as a teacher and his generous spirit had a profound and lasting impact on generations of students. Taproot Video is pleased to be able to make some of his out-of-print books available as e-Books, with permission from his heirs.

Peter’s work has been shown all over the world and he was the first living weaver to be given an exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

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