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Arbutus lost our dear friend Marjorie on Tue, Feb. 25 after a short illness with cancer. Marjorie built our weaving studio over countless hours and along the way, became an endearing friend to all of us. We will be naming the studio “Marjorie’s Loft”. Our volunteers are working on an idea to commemorate her.
Before Marjorie came along, we thought we would not be able to offer floor loom weaving. We had the idea we’d like to offer it, but we had no looms and no one who knew how to weave! Somehow word traveled to Marjorie and she introduced herself to us. She put the word out to her vast, mysterious network of weavers that we were looking for looms and they just started pouring in.
These machines are really big and really complicated. She (with a lot of help from her husband Frank!) vetted every donation, and thoroughly overhauled every one of them. When the weaving loft was as full as it could possibly be, she decided which ones we needed to ‘trade up’ when better looms were donated. She sold the old ones and gave me the checks to put toward the weaving equipment or toward the school’s endless general needs.
She really built our studio – we could never have done it without her, and we don’t think anyone else would have done what she did to get this studio functional. We have 8 wonderful looms now, which is the perfect size for teaching.
She was a deep well of technical knowledge about the looms, the fibers and weaving techniques. She was also a beloved, passionate, generous and supportive teacher. She was a gateway to learning for many students who felt welcomed into the vast world of fiber arts.
We will always be grateful that she got us to a functional state and built up our program. But even more, we are grateful for her friendship. I love, love, love that little sly smile when she was up to something!
Here is Marjorie’s bio from our website:
Marjorie Erikson has been weaving cloth on a variety of floor looms for over 25 years. She has taught private lessons in her home for at least 20 years and now teaches Beginning Weaving for the Olympia Weavers Guild. Her work has been shown in Galleries in WA, OR, CO, CA and WI. It has also been published in Handwoven Magazine and Shuttle, Spindle and Dyepot. She holds awards from the Handweavers Guild of America, Handwoven Magazine, Association of Northwest Weavers and WA State Fair. Continuing to learn new weaving techniques and passing along her knowledge of weaving is of utmost importance to her.
We miss her so much and love her like crazy! She has been such a gift to us and the weaving community! Our heart is with her husband Frank.
-Stacey Waterman-Hoey, Arbutus Executive Director