Meet Deb Bergman of the Purple Fleece

Deb is a talented weaver, spinner and knitter…moreover, she’s a wonderful organizer and was a powerful force in organizing Fiber College 2006.  Most of the time you’ll find her in her studio/shop Purple Fleece in nearby Stockton Springs.  At the College she’ll be teaching a Drop Spindle class on Saturday morning and tending her booth in the Shopper’s Boulevard.

Artist’s Statement

There are few things in life that I become passionate about ? weaving
is one of them. It makes my heart soar. It drives away the blues that
like to settle in around January with the short days and frigid
temperatures. What could be cozier than weaving a blanket to keep me
warm on those cold winter days? Better yet, stepping out of bed in the
morning and feeling the texture of a closely woven and colorful rag
rug against the soles of my bare feet. Like I said, it?s my passion.

It all began back in 1984. My husband and I had just moved to
Minnesota from the East Coast. I knew very little about that area
except for Mary Tyler Moore tossing her beret in the air in
Minneapolis and Laura Ingalls? life on the prairie. (Both proved to be
excellent guides, by the way!) My husband?s job took him to
Scandinavia quite a bit and two weeks after arriving in Minneapolis, I
found myself alone in our apartment, without a job, friends, or any
notion of how to get around that metropolis. What did I do? I decided
it would be the perfect opportunity to learn how to weave. I signed up
for a class at The Weaver?s Guild and the adventure started a few
weeks later. I knew from the very first session that weaving was for me.

I was fascinated by the idea that I could make material out of string.
Centuries before, people had figured out that by passing one thread
over and under other threads, one could make cloth. That cloth could
have color, texture, pattern design, and all from string. I was going
to learn to weave on a multi-harness floor loom. Yes, there are many
other ways to weave such as frame loom weaving, potholder frames, a
back strap loom tied to a tree, inkle loom weaving, tapestry weaving,
and card weaving. The list goes on. With a multi-harness floor loom,
the world of pattern design opens wide.

I?ve been weaving now for 24 years. Since moving to coastal Maine six
years ago, I opened Purple Fleece, a retail fiber shop and studio. I
sell supplies to other fiber artists and teach private classes in
weaving, spinning, and knitting. These days I work primarily with
cotton, wool, and other natural fibers and prefer to make rugs and
wall hangings based upon Scandinavian weaving traditions. The Maine
coast provides the inspiration and exuberant colors for my work. I?ve
exhibited my weavings in Minnesota, Wisconsin, New York, and Maine and
I currently attend craft fairs throughout New England. Every day
brings new ideas and new weaving projects. The passion continues to
grow…

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