Summer Getaway in the Catskills


A sunny day would have been even better for this post so you could picture the perfection of Summer in the Catskills, but although we are looking at a rainy forecast, I didn’t want to wait too long! I know New York City folks get booked up fast, so just power up your imagination, and give yourself something fantastic to look forward to.

This August, the Textile Art Center is hosting it’s first ever series of classes outside of NYC! Think Summer Camp: nature, craft, relaxation, new friends, away-from-home-adventure, then subtract the mandatory games of capture the flag, and crying for your mom. I’m talking about a week in the country, at the gorgeous Outlier Inn on Keshini Fiber Farm, where angora bunnies, sheep and goats roam. We are offering two classes, Weaving and Natural Dyeing, that will have you immersed deep in the local traditions of textile craft. Even our hostess, Ambika Conroy who runs the Inn with her musician boyfriend Josh, is a textile maven. She will teach us about what it takes to breed your own angora bunnies and goats, and how to sheer and use their hair for beautiful and warm fiber projects. (Amaze yourself with her projects here.)

Weaving classes happen on four harness floor looms, in semi open studios, with sunshine filtering in. You can learn the traditional skill of creating cloth in good company and in nature, the way it’s been done in villages across the world for millenia.  It couldn’t be more inspiring! The Natural Dyers will have an opportunity to stroll through the woods plucking plants and natural materials right off the forest floor. Then you will bring those back to the studios to brew up in vast dye pots for fabric dyeing. What comes out will amaze and dazzle you!

If all that wasn’t enough, there is a lake near by, so you can really melt the city-frame-of-mind off, and plunge in for a refreshing swim after a long and creative day. Then return to the Inn for a sumptuous meal with new creative friends. One week won’t be enough! But, don’t worry, you can come back for the weekend of 13/14 weekend in October!

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