Just Who in the Heck is Violet Rose?

Many moons ago when I was editor of Handwoven I needed a pen name for an in-house article. The reasons for this are too long to relay here, but essentially that’s how Violet Rose was born. What I’ve never revealed until now is just who Violet Rose is. You might guess that she is an imaginary character, although a very likeable one, I must say.

Violet Rose is a compilation of the sort of women I was surrounded by in the small Nebraska town where I spent my childhood. She is a tribute to these 60-something women with names like Daisy and June and Violet and Rose who lived modest lives, contributed to their communities in quiet ways, valued friendships and family, and whose stitching and knitting and gardening and baking were both practical and practiced.

Violet Rose took on a new role in the early ‘90s when I used the VR initials for some emotional and politically charged stitched pieces I entered in art shows. Most recently, Violet Rose has hosted a question and answer column in the Schacht Spindle e-newsletter where she’s dispensed words of weaving and spinning wisdom. Today, it only seems fitting to bring Violet Rose into the realm of blogging.

So, who am I and what do I have to say?
Since 1971, when I first wove in Iceland as an exchange student, to today, some 36 years later, weaving (to a large degree) and spinning (lesser so) have increasingly taken over my life. My first official weaving classes were at the Weaving Shop on Walnut Street in Boulder, Colorado. (Little did I know that I would meet my future husband there only a few hot summers later.) After dabbling in tapestry and cardweaving, I finally took a 4-shaft weaving class from Deborah Chandler (then Deborah Redding) of Learning to Weave fame. From Deborah, I really GOT weaving, and I got it with a passion. It was Deborah who suggested I call Linda Ligon at Interweave Press to apply for a job. I started there as her assistant, and a few years later I became Handwoven editor (still my most-favorite job ever).

Shortly after starting at Interweave I married Barry Schacht, founder and president of Schacht Spindle Company. Now I was in equipment heaven, never lacking for loom or shuttle! When my daughter entered school, I left Interweave to be closer to home, weaving when possible. Later, I agreed to temporarily help out at Schacht and have been here ever since. I enjoy this involvement with weaving and spinning and the community surrounding it. I continue to weave, write about weaving, and spin a little from time to time.

Recently, I entered another realm of weaving by becoming the author of a weaving book, Time to Weave, published by my Interweave Press friends.

My goals with this blog are to help extend the community of weavers and spinners, to help others feel connected to the craft, and to offer insights, advice, and encouragement. I hope to hear from you along the way.

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Schacht Spindle

Schacht Spindle Company, Inc. was founded during the back-to-earth movement of the late 1960s and its accompanying craft resurgence. Their first loom was a simple tapestry loom, a version which they still make today. Over nearly 50 years, Schacht has developed a broad range of high-quality hand weaving and hand spinning tools, including their popular Cricket Loom and Ladybug Spinning wheel. Schacht’s mission is to create beautiful and well-designed products that enhance customers’ weaving and spinning experience through innovative problem solving, creative ideas, skilled woodworking and craftsmanship, and friendly, knowledgeable customer service. Schacht’s family-owned business is located in Boulder, Colorado.