Fleece to Shawl Demonstration at METC

Sunday, February 26, 2017, Madison, NJ

The Museum of Early Trades & Crafts
9 Main Street, Madison, NJ 07940
Contact: Erin O'Donnell, Communications Coordinator
973-377-2982 ext. 16


Madison, NJ – On Sunday, February 26, 2017 at the Museum of Early Trades & Crafts (METC) invites everyone to “Fleece to Shawl,” where a talented team of New Jersey spinners and weavers will demonstrate how raw sheep wool is transformed into a beautiful woven shawl.  Beginning at 12:30 p.m., the team will card, spin, and weave a shawl using fleece dyed with natural plant dyes used by the early Americans farmers.  This four-hour demonstration is in conjunction with METC’s new exhibit, “Garden State: Living off the Land in Early New Jersey,” which explores how farmers used all their resources, including fleece from sheep, to survive.  The event is included with paid admission and guests are encouraged to ask questions and return to the museum throughout the day to see the team’s progress.

Anne Choi, owner of   Middle Brook Fiberworks   in Bedminister, NJ. 

Anne Choi, owner of Middle Brook Fiberworks in Bedminister, NJ. 

This talented team, made up of weaver Virginia Hinchman of Hackettstown, NJ and the spinners Kerstin Katko of Long Valley, NJ and Anne Choi of Bedminster, NJ are all experienced in “Sheep to Shawl” competitions that are held around the country.  At these events, teams start with shearing a sheep and then spin and weave the fleece to win the top prize.  Mrs. Choi is also the owner of Middle Brook Fiberworks in Bedminister, NJ where she teaches spinning and other fiber classes.

“‘Garden State’ was developed to show the many ways that farmers in New Jersey utilized all the materials and technology at hand to support their families,” said Deborah Farrar Starker, Executive Director of METC.  “This demonstration will show that even a simple garment like a shawl requires tools, skill and time to create.  We hope that guests walk away with knowledge and appreciation for what goes into the shawls that keep us warm during the Winter.”


Explore American history with a focus on the life and stories of 18th- and 19th- century craftsmen and artisans.  Drawing on its rich collection, METC is connecting the lives of people and their stories, while providing a bridge from the past to the future.  Housed in a stunning Richardsonian Romanesque Revival building donated by D. Willis James to the people of Madison, NJ in 1900, METC offers something for visitors of all ages.  Regular METC admission is $5.00 for adults, $3.00 for seniors, students & children 6 and older, and free for members and children under 6.  Family maximum admission $15.00.  METC is open Tuesday – Saturday 10 A.M. to 4 P.M. and Sunday Noon to 5 P.M.  Closed Monday & Major Holidays.