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Focus on Fibres 2002
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Southern Cross Creations

A report on: Focus on Fibres

A weekend at Lake Tinaroo organised by
Cairns & FNQ Spinners, Weavers & Fibrecrafters Inc.
Far North Queensland, Australia
23-25 August 2002

Cairns & FNQ Spinners, Weavers & Fibrecrafters Inc.

We had a wonderful time at Focus on Fibres. Getting together with other fibrecrafters and suppliers is a real treat when you live in remote regions. This weekend event is held every two years at Lake Tinaroo on the Atherton Tablelands in Far North Queensland.

Lake Tinaroo on the Atherton Tablelands, Queensland

As a fibrecrafter I am fortunate to have a husband who likes to weave, a daughter who uses a drop spindle when she's not beading or sewing and a neighbour who spins and weaves. Our rough road and the long drive puts a damper on traveling to regular fibrecraft meetings. But we four decided we had to go to Focus on Fibres! And the weather was gorgeous.

Gillian spins peacefully


We joined over 100 other participants at the event on Saturday. I have never seen so many spinners! What a wonderful atmosphere in that hall!


Gillian likes to spin silk, mohair, linen and wool.

Dij at work on her knitting




We found inspiration and friendly advice available for the asking.


Dij picks up her knitting.

Redbird likes the saddlebags


Each participant received a clever and handsomely made present: chair saddlebags. They drape across the seat of your chair and provide handy pockets down each side.

Redbird draped hers over her shoulder and slipped her drop spindle and fleece inside whenever she needed her hands free.

Aileen sets up an inkle loom


Workshops and demonstrations over the weekend included:


Inkle loom weaving

Val and her bobbin lace





Bobbin lace making

Learn to make felted slippers and get a foot massage, too!




Felting slippers

Weaver at table loom




Weaving on a table loom

bobbin lace specialist
Bobbin lace and expert hands

Many other demonstrations included dyeing, glass bead making, paper making with kenaf, spinning alpaca, card making using recycled more than I can remember and more than Jerry managed to photograph. Perhaps because he stopped to chat with craftspeople whenever he took a photo. :-)

Mieke works on her rug.




Mieke works on her rug and sells raffle tickets for the minature knitted barnyard with its collection of animals, trees, buildings and human figures.

Tapestry weaver shares her knowledge.




A tapestry weaver sits at her loom which is made out of copper pipe.

Jackie concentrates on the inkle loom.




Jackie focuses on her technique, aiming for perfect selvedges... that's because inkles bands are almost totally selvedges.

Cherry uses an electric spinner.




Cheerful Cherry puts her feet up while she spins on her electric spinner.

I fell in love with the lace knitted scarves on display. I couldn't resist buying carded Romney wool in varigated blues and charcoal for spinning and a bit of rayon chenille for weaving. A spinner gave me tips on adding feathers to my plied yarn. Sounds like fun.

Lid of pine needle basket.

I sat with a woman making baskets from pine needles. When I asked where to purchase pine needles, she laughed, pointed out the door toward a stand of tall pine trees and said, go out there and collect them off the ground!

Peg teaches Redbird to make bobbin lace.



Redbird found answers to her questions about counted cross-stitch.

Later I discovered her making a sample of bobbin lace under Peg's guidance.


Learn new knitting skills.



Helping hands made sock knitting easier.

I hope everyone had as much fun as we did. Many thanks go to all the people who organised and ran Focus on Fibres. And many thanks for all the friendly fibre help. Well done!

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