Fibre festival party begins in Amherst

Dave Mathieson
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AMHERST – Fibre artists from throughout Canada, the U.S. and the world will blanket Amherst with their creations this week during the 2013 Nova Scotia Fibre Arts Festival.

“People book their vacations around it and come from all over the world,” said Beth Estabrooks, festival coordinator. “They come for, in some cases, specific courses and, in other cases, because they want to take it all in.”

The festival had its opening celebration Tuesday night at festival headquarters inside Amherst Town Hall.

“There are over 60 events, displays and workshops during the week-long event. Some are free and some you have to register for in advance,” added Estabrooks.

The reason why people have to book in advance is because they fill up fast.

Wednesday’s festival line up includes rug hooking, Irish Crochet, quilting and sewing.

The festival tries to focus on popular trends.

“You have to keep your ear to the ground so you can offer courses that people want to take,” said chairperson Phyllis Cameron.

“In the past couple of years knitting kind of died away a bit, now knitting is making a comeback," added Cameron. “There’s always new trends in quilting or new trends in rug hooking with concern to colour.”

Several Amherst town councilors were at the opening, including Robert Bird.

“We’re thrilled to have a big crowd down here at the opening. There’s people from B.C. and the U.S.,” said Bird.  “I was just talking to a councilor from Durham, New Hampshire, and he was talking about how spectacular it is.”

Bird congratulated the great job of the organizers of the festival.

“Hats off to the organizers,” said Bird. “It’s one of those things that keeps getting bigger and better every year and helps put Amherst on the map.”

There are free demonstrations at Dayle’s Department Stor every day and free demonstrations at headquarters every day.

Headquarters is open every day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Wednesdays Schedule:

– Create Beauty Every Day - The Joy of Rug Hooking. Deanne Fitzpatrick & Guests.

– Japanese Fabrics with Mary Farrow Sinclair at Breakfast at Brittany’s.

– Introduction to Irish Crochet with Phyllis Cameron at 141 Victoria Street. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

– Geometric Rug Hooking with Edie Legere-Cole at the Cumberland County Museum. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

– Many Trips Around the World Quilt Workshop with Penelope Player at the First Baptist Church. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

– Beginner Felting with Donna Farrell at Maggie’s Place. 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

– Thread Painting Techniques with Kathy Tidswell at the Amherst Fire Hall. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

– Quilt Display & Workshop by Victoria’s Quilts Canada, and the Masonic Hall. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

– Rug Show by Halina Bienkowski at the Amherst Pharmasave. 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.




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