Gwendolyn Gavin Bio
My journey into craft goes back to my early childhood, when I was introduced to cross stitch, rug hooking, pottery painting, and other crafts. However, my path to textiles really began with a sewing project when I was about nine or ten. Sewing and an obsession with fabric led me to study fashion design. I received an A.A. in Fashion Design and spent the next few years in apparel manufacturing. After a few years, I headed to England to study further and earned a B.A. in Textile Crafts, specializing in weaving. I eventually returned to manufacturing, but in 2014, I left that job to explore new opportunities and spent the next few years working at Fuller Craft. I recently finished an M.S. in Arts Administration and plan to use that with my diverse experience as a textile and craft advocate.
Textiles have been a part of my life since childhood, and with a background in manufacturing, I am interested in the intersection of craft and industry, as well as the traditional and the modern. I mostly make products, as I find a great deal satisfaction in crafting something for a purpose.
I practice fiber arts of all kinds, but mostly prefer to be at a loom. I find inspiration in the process and the materials. A skein of yarn is a fascinating thing; it has its own personality and character, defined by its fiber, color and twist, and yet it still has so many possibilities. The same is true of fabric. I will spend hours examining weave structures. I love to play with the juxtaposition between structures, yarns, colors, and patterns.
I am passionate about textile literacy, increasing a knowledge of the skills and processes of textile and apparel production that have disappeared from our culture as a result of industrialization and globalization. We over-consume and under-appreciate most of these products. I teach to bridge the chasm between this lack knowledge and the growing awareness of problematic practices in mass production.