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.
Due to Covid-19, the Spinning Certificate course at Haliburton School of Art and Design, Fleming College has been postponed again until it is safe to resume. We are now aiming to present Level IV in 2022, Level V in 2023, and the final year in 2024. We hope to also start a new Level I group in Haliburton in 2022. Registration will likely open in March, 2022.
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 consists of 18 units which were designed to be completed independently by homestudy. There may be opportunities to do a Unit in a hands-on workshop at an OHS conference or with a guild. We also offer virtual groups which provide support and encouragement to members in the course.
The Weaving Certificate is achieved by passing all 18 Units. Although the Units may be taken in any order, it is recommended that Units 1 (Weaving Basics) and 2 (Colour and Design) be done before the others. Some weaving knowledge is required before taking the course. Please see Are You Ready to Start the OHS Weaving Certificate Course? before you begin.
You can purchase the weaving units here. Please note that this page is only for OHS members so you will need to login to view.
Exciting Weaving Education News!
Registration for the inaugural semester opens September 1 – see details below
Weaving Certificate Virtual Study Group Pilot Program
Now you can plan your weaving life as you work on your OHS Weaving Certificate!
Beginning in October, 2021, OHS will be offering virtual study groups as a 6 year semestered system. As always, students will work on their Weaving Certificate independently, but will have the opportunity to join a virtual support group for each unit, if they choose.
Each year will consist of three discrete semesters. Students registering for a particular unit will join the virtual study group for that semester only and will need to register for subsequent sessions as they occur.
Membership in a virtual study group allows access to the Virtual group Facebook page and to videoconferencing meetings with the Unit leader at the beginning of each unit for a unit overview, and at a halfway point for a Q and A session.
The introductory Units 1 and 2 will be offered more frequently – once per year – giving interested weavers the opportunity to begin the program with the support of a virtual study group within the 6-year timeframe.
Videoconference meetings for Units 1 and 2 will be offered on Thursday evenings at 7:00 EST, meetings for subsequent units will be offered on Tuesday evenings at 7:00 EST.
There will be a $10 non-refundable registration fee to join a virtual group, payable each semester, to cover program costs and unit leader compensation. Registration will open one month prior to the semester start date. You can register for the virtual group by logging in here
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.