As a member of the Ontario Handweavers and Spinners, you will find many opportunities for learning. Throughout the province, there are over 50 local guilds. By joining a guild, you will be connected to many more chances to learn and connect with others who are passionate about spinning and weaving. Many guilds offer beginner lessons and other opportunities to learn, through workshops, conferences, seminars, courses, spin-ins, and small group meetings.
The Biennial Conference offers an array of workshops, speakers, and events. Local or regional seminars often have additional workshops.
For those who wish to work in a more structured way, the Ontario Handweavers and Spinners Certificate Courses have long been esteemed for the breadth and depth of the units, as well as their high standards. Over the years, these programs have produced the backbone of teachers and experts in the fields of handweaving and spinning in the province of Ontario.
OHS Spinning Certificate Program
The OHS Spinning Certificate Program consists of six consecutive semesters (Levels I–VI). It is usually offered, one semester each year, during the summer months. Completion of each level of study involves 8 days of instruction at an educational institution, followed by independent homework assignments that are completed, mailed to instructors, and evaluated throughout the year. The Spinning Certificate Program is offered when there is sufficient interest from potential students and where facilities, co-ordinators, and instructors are available.
The OHS will consider acceptance into an ongoing OHS Spinning Certificate Program under the following conditions:
Transfers: OHS credits are transferable within the OHS program. Each transfer will be evaluated on an individual basis by the Spinning Education Committee. Please contact the Spinning Education Chair to check for space availability; prior marks will be transferred to the new course. Students who did not complete an entire semester may be required to repeat that semester.
Prior Credits: Students with prior spinning experience may be considered for entry into Level II at the discretion of the Spinning Education Committee on an individual basis.
Sequence of Study: Semesters must be taken in order, as each unit covers material dependant on the previous level.
OHS Weaving Certificate Program
The OHS Weaving Certificate Course is available to members as an independent study program, through the Frances Forstner Home Study and occasional workshops. Individual guilds or groups of members may also form a study group to work on the Certificate Course. One part of the course is often offered at the OHS conference.
The OHS Weaving Certificate Course is made up of 18 Units and may be taken in a hands-on format (workshop), through the Frances Forstner Home Study program and in a college setting, when available. Regardless of the format, the credit for it counts toward the OHS Weaving Certificate Course. Although the Units may be taken in any order, it is recommended that Units 1 and 2 be done before the others. Unit 2 is currently under revision; we recommend, for now, if you are completing Unit 1 that you move to Unit 3 for now.
The Ontario Handweavers and Spinners also supports a Master Weaver and Master SpinnerProgram. For graduates of the certificate program, the Masters program offers an opportunity to research a topic in weaving or spinning in depth. For more information, download this Masters Program Overview PDF.