Sprang is an ancient twining technique which predates knitting, although museum pieces using sprang are often mislabeled as knitted. The word sprang comes to us from Sweden, but sprang was practiced not only in northern Europe but in Mediterranean Africa, east Asia, and pre Columbian America. You have probably seen sprang used in hammocks and string bags but never really paid attention to the technique (I remember being totally baffled when I tried to figure out how exactly my string hammock was made!). But sprang can be used for much more than just those basics!
We are extremely fortunate to be hosting Carol James this February. Carol has taught sprang the world over and has literally written the book on sprang! Besides having a wealth of information on the subject, she’s also a whole lot of fun — many of you might remember her from the Milwaukee Convergence where she delighted the audience with her sprang talk. She’s even designed a formal gown entirely made of sprang!
For more information on Carol, check out her website www.spranglady.com She also has YouTube videos about the most famous piece of sprang in the US: a revolutionary war sash that was given to George Washington after it was used as a stretcher to carry General Braddock, gravely injured, from the battlefield. There’s a sprang display on the bulletin board in the studio hallway, and Carol’s book is in the guild library.
We’ll have Carol here for a weekend workshop: Feb.7 from 6 to 9 PM, Feb. 8 from 9 to 4, and Feb. 9 from 9 to noon. The class is being sponsored by the Duluth Art Institute and you can sign up for it on their website. If you have any trouble registering for the workshop, contact Louise Young at [email protected]
How can we not be fascinated by something that incorporates history, geography, ancient art, — and string???