2015 Farmers Markets and Festivals Schedule

I am so pleased to be returning as a regular weekly vendor to the Lyme Farmers Market  at Ashlawn Farm in Lyme, CT.   Every Saturday morning from 9 am to 12:30, starting June 6 and ending October 10.  I will be here every Saturday except for the dates listed below. 

The Connecticut Sheep and Wool Festival, April 25.     

The Lyme Junior Womens League Fundraiser,  6 to 10 pm,  April 25

Long Island Fleece and Fiber Fair,  May 16 & 17.   

Fitch Fibers "FiberFest",  June 13

Essex Arts and Crafts  Fair, on the town green,  August 15, 10 am to 4 pm.

Coventry Farmers Market Fiber Festival, September 27.

Autumn Arts Festival, on thhe Madison, CT town green,  October 10 and 11.

New England Fiber Festival at the Big E fairgrounds, West Springfield,  MA.   November 7 & 8.

An Exhibit of Works by Lyme Artists at the Lyme Public Hall, 249 Hamburg Rd, Lyme, CT.  November 13th, 5 to 7:30 pm and November 14th, 10 am to 4 pm.

High Hopes Holiday Festival,  36 Town Woods Rd, Old Lyme, CT.   November 15th, 12 to 4 pm.

Holiday Arts at the Cooley Gallery, 25 Lyme Street, Old Lyme CT.  Opening reception November 19, 5 to 7 pm.  Show runs through December 31.  Gallery hours 10 am to 5 pm, Tuesday through Saturday,  and 12 to 4 pm on Sunday. 

Guest Instructor in 2015!

I am pleased to welcome Patricia Fortinsky to my studio this coming winter, where she will be leading four hand-spinning workshops in January through March.  

About Patricia Fortinsky and Tidal Yarns 

My introduction to fibers and the art of spinning wool began more than 25 years ago while living in Maine and raising three small children. I had been knitting since childhood and became fascinated with the process of creating my own yarn.  During my years in Maine I learned the basics of spinning wool, spending lots of time with other spinners and enjoying the many beautiful fibers I collected at festivals throughout the State. 
Over the past 20 years I have had the opportunity to work on two different sheep farms and learn through hands on experience what it takes to produce high quality raw wool. The knowledge I have gained, and continue to gain, about the raw wool itself has become a passion of mine. 
Most of the fleeces I select are washed and spun at small, independent New England mills. I feel very strongly about supporting small farms and businesses to help preserve the local natural resources involved in creating beautiful yarns. 
As a long time supporter of locally grown organic foods, I am naturally drawn to finding the colors and pigments hidden inside local plants. The secrets come out in a process of chopping, soaking and heating the dye stuffs. There are now ancient natural dyes available through sources that are self-sustaining. They open up new color worlds and combined with the local dyes create a luscious color spectrum full of surprises and infinite possibilities of color combinations.

Announcing the next Alpaca Rug Workshop!

Alpaca Rug Workshop:  9 am to 3 pm,  April 11 & 12, 2014  

This two-day workshop is for beginners (or experienced) weavers to create their own 2' by 3' alpaca rug on my pre-warped looms.  You will learn the various tricks I've learned through my production weaving to make a durable and beautiful rug.  The big Glimakra and three Macombers will be warped up with different color warps and weavers will use CKW bulky alpaca yarn spun by Dragon Fly Farm in Canterbury, CT.  Three weavers will weave side-by-side on three individual warps wound on the big Glimakra, and the other three will weave solo on a Macomber.  You will need to purchase one bump per rug, and there will be several colors/styles and warp colors to choose from.  Weavers will have plenty of time to weave at their own pace and then completely finish their edges once their rug is off the loom.  Students on the Macomber looms will have the option of weaving either fringed or bound edges for their headers.   All participants will learn how to finish these headers to produce sturdy edges on their rugs.

Participants:  Six weavers. 

Workshop Fee for two-days: $140.00.                                                        

Materials Fee:  natural-colored alpaca bumps: $75.00 each.  Dyed alpaca/merino blend bumps: $85.00 each.  Warps are on the loom already and are included in the workshop fee.

Alpaca Rug Weaving Workshop for Beginners

I am pleased to announce my first alpaca rug workshop for beginning weavers on January 30 and 31, in Old Lyme, CT.   This is an opportunity to weave without having to warp your loom!   My big Glimakra and three Macombers will be warped up with different color warps so that we can each complete our own 2' by 3' rug using the bulky alpaca yarn spun by Dragon Fly Farm in Canterbury, CT.  Three weavers will work together on three individual warps wound on the big Glimakra, and the other three will weave solo on a Macomber.  We will take our time learning how to weave a patterned or a fringeless header, perfecting our bulky yarn edging, beating & splicing in new yarn, and then finish off all our rugs with knotting/fringe or a sewn-bound edge. 

You will need one bump per rug, and there will be several colors/styles and warp colors to choose from.  Please let me know if you will be bringing your own bump so we can decide on your warp color.  

Please contact me stephaniemortonhandweaver@gmail.com to register and ask questions,
or call 860/917-3429 during school hours.

Participants:  Six “beginner” weavers.  

Workshop/Loom Fee:  $140 includes the use of a warped loom
                                      (CT Handweavers Guild members pay a discounted fee)

Materials Fee: Natural-colored alpaca bumps are $75 each

                        Dyed alpaca/merino blend bumps are $85 each.

                        8/4 cotton warps are on the loom already and are included in the workshop fee.

Time: 9am to 3pm, Thursday and Friday (we may go over a bit)

Place:  64 Browns Lane, Old Lyme CT   860/917-3429

Snow Dates:  February 6 & 7, 2014


Find my rugs at Gallery 19 in Essex, CT!

You can now find my rugs at Judy and Helen's beautiful new gallery on Main Street in historic Essex, CT!

Gallery 19 Opening in Essex 

            A new modern art venue, Gallery 19, is opening its doors at 19A Main Street in Essex, Connecticut’s historic downtown shopping area. Founded by Old Lyme artists Judy Friday and Helen Cantrell, the gallery will feature their abstract and expressionist paintings and works on paper, and will eventually include other artists who share the gallery’s commitment to modernism.

 Gallery19’s inaugural reception will be Sunday, October 13 from 3 to 5 p.m., with refreshments catered by nationally-known chef Amanda Cushman. On view will be Cantrell’s expressionist oils, evoking the shoreline’s salt marshes, as well as a new series of suburban houses glimpsed from commuter railway windows. “Art is about perception, not nature,” says the artist, quoting Roy Lichtenstein, “although nature inspires me, as does the work of other artists, especially abstract expressionists like Willem de Kooning and Richard Diebenkorn.” Also featured will be Judy Friday’s new abstract work, which bounces between geometry and chaos, including collages from comics, luminous grids and brushy explosions of color, the freer paintings inspired in part by the work of Joan Mitchell.

             Judy Friday has shown extensively in New England and Ohio, where she graduated from Ohio State University in 1980. She has studied at the Lyme Art Academy and is well known in the shoreline arts community as a 20-year veteran of the Cooley Gallery in Old Lyme. “The Cooley Gallery has been vital to my exposure as an artist, and I am grateful for their generosity in showing my work,” Friday says, adding: “Now I am launching a new adventure, a new way to explore all avenues of modernist, contemporary art.” Helen Cantrell, a painter and printmaker who moved to Old Lyme in 2010, is a graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (Diploma 2004). Cantrell says, “We are excited to join Art Essex, the Essex Art Association, the Orison Project, and other artists in this area—we think the time is right to develop modernist and contemporary art synergy.”

            Gallery 19 will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. or by appointment.  For more information call 860 581-8735, or email Helen Cantrell at info@gallery19essex.com.


I am pleased to announce that I have a new apprentice starting with me this September! Ada Moore is an aspiring weaver whose family recently presented her with 5 working looms for a surprise birthday present.   Ada and I will be working together every week in my Old Lyme studio, where she will be learning the craft from beginning to end. Welcome Ada!  I'm so pleased that you're coming to work with me!

Harvest Festival at Stonington Vineyards!

Stonington Vineyards is hosting their Harvest Festival on September 21 and 22.  Come join the fun!  There will be live music, wine tasting, tours of the vineyard and many vendors selling their handmade wares.  I will be bringing my rugs with my friend and weaving colleague, Wendy Mathieu, so please be sure to drop by the tent and see what we've been up to.  

  • You can purchase tickets in advance by going to their website.                        Stonington Vineyards, September 21 and 22, 2013                                                  523 Taugwonk Rd, Stonington, Connecticut 06378