Since our earliest days, we have always felt strongly about education and outreach. In the beginning, we worked closely with the Denver and Boulder free schools to offer classes in weaving and spinning. Barry Schacht was an advocate at the time about the importance of paying teachers. First, he felt teachers should be paid because this would lend a level of professionalism to the program. Secondly, he felt that if students had to pay to take a class, even a nominal fee, it would help increase their commitment. Hundreds learned to weave and spin and with this success, Dan and Barry Schacht opened The Weaving Shop with other friends on Walnut Street in Boulder, where even more in-depth education was possible.
Fifty years later, we continue to believe in the critical role that education plays and have developed several initiatives that support the teaching of weaving and spinning.
Jane Patrick and Barry Schacht Scholarship in Fibers
Our founder, Barry Schacht and his wife Jane Patrick established a yearly scholarship at Colorado State University’s extensive fiber program, led by Professor Tom Lundberg. Quite a few of our interns and employees over the years have come from CSU. This scholarship supports students who are majoring in art with a fibers concentration.
From time to time, we offer summer internships to students studying at the university level. Over the years, interns have assisted with documenting manufacturing processes, making samples for books, warping looms, events, and contributed to our blog and newsletters, as well as working on product design and in our manufacturing and assembly areas. To find out if we are currently offering an internship opportunity, please contact email@example.com.
The Handweavers Guild of Boulder Schacht Outreach Fund
When Barry and Dan first came to Boulder, there was already a weaver’s guild. Many of its members provided valuable feedback to the young loom makers. In 2014, the Handweavers Guild of Boulder celebrated its 50th anniversary, and to honor this milestone, we set up a fund to encourage innovative outreach. It has helped provide education to elementary schools, makerspace training, and educational outreach to art teachers, among other projects.
Boulder Fiber Fest
On the local level, we helped found Fiber Fest, along with the City of Boulder makerspace and the Handweavers Guild of Boulder. This summer event is free to the public and shares our love of weaving, spinning, and the textile arts with the public. This one-day event offers try-it stations where the public can weave on a variety of looms, try their hands at spinning, knitting, indigo dyeing, and felting. It is a great way to connect with people who might never have thought about or seen the textile arts. We encourage you to offer a Fiber Fest in your community. It’s so much fun, and worth all of the thrill of discovery from parents and kids alike.