The National Association of Wheat Weavers – Biographies – MOTHER EARTH NEWS

By Staff

The National Association of Wheat Weavers

Name:  The National Association of Wheat Weavers is a thriving membership that includes all skill levels from beginners, to craftspeople, to advanced straw artists.

Location: Members live all over the United States and around the world.    

History: In the 1970s, a group of women from Kansas traveled to Eye Manor in Herefordshire, England, where Lettice Sandford conducted a summer school on straw art. It was there the women of Kansas gained expertise and revived the craft in America, which was instrumental in the founding of NAWW in 1987.

  • NAWW’s objective is to educate, develop and promote all forms of straw artistry.
  • Gleanings is published three times a year, containing articles and projects for the straw art enthusiast.
  • Members meet yearly at a National Convention rotating the location across the United States for an Annual Meeting of membership. Twenty-four classes are offered as well as a favor exchange and auctions for banquet table centerpieces and the teacher’s projects. A Straw Expo, open to the public, offers the chance to buy books, many different supplies, member’s work, marquetry and antique straw work.
  • The membership in the United States is divided into three geographical districts: the Eastern District is from the Atlantic to east of the Mississippi River; the Central District is west of the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains; the Western District is from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific.

Current Projects: Members are currently working on their next convention.  Anyone wishing to teach at convention will need to send their project to the committee for consideration by September 15, 2013.

Other Fun Facts: Wheat weavers create with straw using many methods including plaiting (that’s a short a), Swiss Straw Work, and marquetry. Plaiting is the technique most people are familiar with. (Think braiding, but with many more straws and more intricate.) The Swiss work is often done with split straws or two splits that were spun into a thread. These techniques were developed for the hat industry. Marquetry is straw opened and applied to a surface. Usually applied to paper and then cut into a shape. Over the years, as we have increased our knowledge, we incorporate all the techniques into our work.

More Places to Find NAWW on the