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Afternoon Lecture Programs at the Congregational Church of Westborough begin at 1:00 p.m.

and are open to the public.

Afternoon Speakers 2024-2025
The February Meeting will be held on ZOOM. All other Meetings and Afternoon Speakers will be Hybrid - both Virtual and In-Person
If you plan to attend the ZOOM session, you must register. In-person attendees do not need to register.

September 11, 2024

Making the MOB: The Story of the Museum of Beadwork

Kristina Skillin

An archaeological animal hair specialist walks into a bead store…


Join Kristina Skillin, Director of the Museum of Beadwork in Portland ME, as she talks about her experience studying human adornment and ornamentation and how it led to the concept, building, and opening of the Museum of Beadwork.


Skillin will share some of the artwork and inspiration that helped shape what the Museum has become, how the tumultuous events of the past five years led to all manner of challenges and setbacks, and how a little perseverance and passion finally brought this institution to life.

October 9, 2024

New Textiles for Mid-Century America 1930-1970: Handweavers, Industry, and “Good Design”

Susan Ward


Between the 1930s and the 1960s, and especially after World War II, trends in modern architecture and furniture design, required new kinds of upholstery and drapery fabrics. At the same time, prominent handweavers and educators such as Anni Albers, Marianne Strengell, and Dorothy Liebes promoted a new approach, known as “contemporary weaving,” that emphasized simple textile structures, texture effects, and experimentation with materials. Architects commissioned hand-woven fabrics for important interiors, and manufacturers hired handweavers to design prototypes for power-loom production. These new textiles were enthusiastically promoted to the American public as “Good Design” in museum exhibitions and competitions throughout the 1940s and 1950s.


This talk is a survey of the modern furnishing textile “scene” in the mid-20th century. 

You will hear about the work of influential weavers, designers and companies, the newly developed yarns and fibers, the influence of schools such as Cranbrook and Black Mountain College, as well as the role played by museums and institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis.  A ”show and tell” from Ms. Ward’s personal collection of vintage textiles by Knoll Textiles, Herman Miller, Jack Lenor Larsen, and California custom weaver Maria Kipp rounds out the presentation.

November 13, 2024

Bark Baskets of the Indigenous Northwest Woodlands

Jennifer Lee

A Mokok is a Northeast woodland Native American style container made of bark, stitched with spruce roots.


This lecture will present history, symbolism and methods used to make the baskets.  The work of several regional Indigenous basket makers will be discussed. 

February 12, 2025
On Zoom

Stay tuned for the announcement of February’s afternoon Zoom presenter!

March 12, 2025

Frida Hansen and the Heart of Art Nouveau in Tapestry and Transparency

Robbie LaFleur 


Frida Hansen (1855-1931) was an internationally famous Norwegian artist. She began her career as a tapestry weaver during the National Romantic era, working to revive traditional weaving techniques and using historical motifs and symbols. Hansen’s personal style evolved, with international Art Nouveau, Arts and Crafts, and Japanese influences. in addition to her monumental art tapestries, Frida Hansen developed a technique of open warp wool transparencies, used primarily as portieres, or door hangings. These tapestries combined open warps with meticulous woven areas to create textiles with fluid drape and dramatic contrasts of color and shadow. Join Robbie LaFleur for a look at Frida Hansen’s artistry, technique, and inspiring floral imagery.

April 9, 2025

Building Woven Landscapes

Maris Van Vlack


With Building Woven Landscapes, interdisciplinary textile artist Maris Van Vlack will provide insight into her artistic practice of creating woven and knitted landscape tapestries using floor looms and jacquard looms. Van Vlack is an interdisciplinary artist who uses weaving to build images of architectural spaces that explore themes of time and memory. She will talk about her inspirations, the development of her process, and the way that she creates her work by combining tapestry, jacquard, industrial knitting, and paint. Much of her visual inspiration comes from architecture and geology, and she will describe how traveling to places like Hawai’i and Iceland has influenced her work. She often combines many different ways of working within one piece, and will break down her process of using techniques such as warp printing, double weave, jacquard, and surface knitting, and how all those things can be interwoven to create a cohesive image. 

May 14, 2025 

The May Meeting is an annual celebration of the Guild's programs and members.  The schedule includes the Annual Business Meeting, Ratings Exhibit and presentations, Awards, the Guild Challenge presentation, a light-hearted Fashion Show, and a Celebration Luncheon.  There are no morning workshops or afternoon speaker.

Nathan earned his Apprentice Rating in 2024

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