The Marshfield School of Weaving is the nation’s foremost school for textile techniques as practiced before the handweaving revivals of the 20th century. The instruction is founded on efficient, practical methods rooted in a tradition that reaches back to the middle ages.
Gathered in a 19th-century barn, overlooking the hills of central Vermont, is the largest collection of working 18th and 19th-century looms in the country. Students of all experience levels, from first-time weavers to those with decades at the loom, meet in classes that range from one to several weeks.
The Marshfield School of Weaving was founded in 1975 by Virginia Stranahan and Norman Kennedy who learned his trade from the last of the professional handweavers in Aberdeen, Scotland following the second World War. Kate Smith, who began her instruction under Norman in 1979, reconstituted the school in 2007 and teaches with her students, Justin Squizzero and Dosia Sanford.
Help Us Keep Craft Alive.
As we enter this season of giving, we reflect on all those that have created the culture of community and learning that is the Marshfield School of Weaving and look with hope and aspirations toward a bright future. After many decades of leadership, Kate Smith will retire at year's end and turn her creativity to new, personal endeavors. We are grateful for her vision, dedication, and for laying the foundation for the next chapter of MSW.
In January 2023, we celebrated our formal transition to a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. With a board skilled in traditional craft, non-profit management, and fundraising, we have a team ready to guide the growth and sustainability of the school in the years ahead. Dedicated to the mission of the Marshfield School of Weaving, world class instructors Justin Squizzero and Dosia Sanford will continue to play a key role in the development and offering of the programs and classes which are unique to MSW. In 2023 our students, the heart of the school, numbered 237, and traveled from 32 states and four countries! They came to share these rich and valued learning experiences that only MSW can offer.
Today, at this transition point, we call on YOU, our loyal supporters, for help to ensure that these transformative experiences continue and that MSW not only survives, but thrives as a place of fellowship around this fine craft tradition.
Please consider supporting the operations of the Marshfield School of Weaving through a tax-deductible donation by using the link below or sending to: Marshfield School of Weaving, PO Box 174, Plainfield, VT 05667.
Thank you for your generosity and support on this incredible journey!
The Board of Directors and Instructors of the Marshfield School of Weaving
New for 2023: see classes and sign up directly online.
SPECIAL PROJECT FOR 2022
If you are the owner of an early hand loom or know of one in a historic site please consider filling in our
North American Early Hand Loom Survey. Click here to find the survey.
Chipstone Foundation has produced an excellent series of short videos profiling artists and craftspeople and their perspectives on the creative process. Watch their interview with our Director, Kate Smith.