Guild Info

Information & Resources


Information and Resources for Members

(rev. 3/2017)

Welcome to the Mother Lode Weavers and Spinners Guild

The purpose of the organization is to promote public interest in hand weaving and hand spinning and to assist members in improving their skills through education.  Meetings are held each month except July and August.  In addition to regular guild meetings, monthly spinning meetings are held in members’ homes.  Guild meetings are the second Tuesday of each month, and spinning meetings are the fourth Tuesday.  Organization dues are: Single $25.00; Family $30.00 (with an additional $5 for hardcopy newsletters).  Dues are due June 1 of each year and delinquent July 1.

Responsibility of Guild Members

Aside from the usual responsibilities as a member of any organization, there are specific ways members can help the guild.

     •     Look for ways to support the guild by participating in county fairs, quilt shows, and the October FestiFall in Columbia.  In some instances our guild receives money for helping, and in others individual members are able to sell their work with only a small percentage going to the sponsoring group

     •     Assist in leaving the meeting room in good order when we leave.  Chairs are stacked in the room beyond the kitchen.  Bring your own cup for tea or coffee during meetings so the people in charge of refreshments will not have additional burdens other than preparing coffee and hot water  and laying out refreshments.

     •     Some members of the guild give demonstrations at local grammar schools.  While these earn no money for the guild, they do provide excellent community and public relations and also give the public access to the art of spinning and weaving

     •     Remember to return library books and videos promptly so other members can have the opportunity to utilize them.

     •     Help with refreshments at each meeting by signing up to bring baked goods for members to enjoy at meetings.  Three members are needed for each of our monthly meetings.  Helping to clean up after the program is also appreciated.

     •     Participate in Standing Committees as members or chairpersons.  These committees are established by the Executive Board of the guild and the Chairs are appointed by the guild president.  Some of the committees are: Newsletter, Historian, Program, Sunshine, Spinning, Equipment, Library, Hospitality, Workshop and Publicity.

     •     One of the most significant ways members can assist the guild and learn a lot about spinning and weaving is to assist in the planning of the annual conference.  It is also a way to meet the “movers and shakers” of the local and state organizations.  (See CNCH: What is it and How does the Guild Function with it? for further information)

Spinning Section of our Guild

Guild membership also includes emphasis on spinning, and its programs reflect that emphasis.  In addition, there are monthly meetings of the Spinning Group.  They are held in members’ homes and provide an excellent opportunity to learn by doing.  Expert instruction is available as members help each other on an informal basis through either direct teaching or the indirect method of “immersion” and spinning tips.

Studio 49

This is a study group of the Mother Lode Weavers and Spinners catering to the needs of working people in the region. Anyone interested in fiber arts—specifically, learning to spin—is invited to participate.  Meetings are held on the second Saturday of each month from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the meeting room in Tuolumne County Library on Greenley Rd. in Sonora.  Studio 49 sponsors a Fiber Arts retreat each year where people of like interests can gather to share their love of fiber.

Guild Equipment

Guild equipment is available for rent to members. Listed below are a few of the pieces available for rent.  See current newsletter for complete list and to make arrangements for any equipment you want to rent.



     •  RAG CUTTER


     •  LOOMS (4-harness floor/table; inkle; rigid heddle)

Weaving Studio

The MLWS Guild Weaving Studio houses six floor looms and weaving equipment. The Studio was established in 2007. Our guild is fortunate to have master weavers who teach our members. Classes are held in beginning and intermediate weaving and are announced in the guild newsletter.


The Mother Lode Weavers & Spinners Guild has an extensive library in the subject of fiber art. Books on weaving, spinning, dyeing, and more are available to members. The library is located at the weaving studio and is open daily.  We also have magazines for weavers and spinners.


The newsletter is distributed by e-mail in pdf format to all paid guild members the first week of the month.  For an additional fee the newsletter can be mailed.

Regular contributors include the president, secretary, program chair, hostess chair, Studio 49 chair, workshop chair, spinning chair, equipment chair, CNCH liaison and at times treasurer.  There are other columns written by other guild members.

Members are welcome to submit information to the newsletter editor as well.  

Articles should be submitted by the week of the 20th to be included in the newsletter.  The newsletter editor also keeps a master e-mail list to be used to send/forward group announcements. This can include for sale items and is done throughout the month.


The guild website is at  It contains general information, registration forms, and the library book and magazine list in a downloadable pdf format.

CNCH:  What is it and How does the Guild function with it?      

CNCH (pronounced cinch) is an acronym for the Conference of Northern California Handweavers, Inc.  Membership is through Northern California Handweaving and Spinning Guilds.  Its purpose is to provide education to the public about the craft of weaving.  It was incorporated in 1962.  There are over 30 member guilds divided into five geographical areas.  We are members of Area II, and the following guilds are included in our area:  Golden Valley Weavers and Spinners Guild, Fresno Guild, Mother Lode Weavers and Spinners Guild, Del Oro Guild and Central Coast Weavers.  The CNCH website is at

The Advisory Council of CNCH is made up of Area Advisors who meet four times a year.  There are two advisors from each of the five areas that make up the Advisory Council.  They act as a governing board to provide budgetary information and to facilitate communication among the various guilds; in effect, they manage the organization.  This group publishes a newsletter three times a year called CNCHnet  (  A very important aspect of their work is to oversee the annual conference.  

In addition to the Advisory Council, individual guild member representatives are called Liaisons.  They are selected from each guild and meet twice a year.  The Liaisons keep each guild informed about CNCH matters.  They also express our concerns to CNCH.  Meetings are held in conjunction with our annual CNCH Conference in the spring and an annual planning meeting in the fall, which also acts as a coordinating meeting for the upcoming conference.

The most important function of CNCH is the annual conference.  This is carried out by Conference Committees.  These committees meet for two to three years prior to a given conference.  Dates and locations for conferences are selected years ahead, and planning begins immediately after the decision is made.  Each Conference Committee is made up of members from guilds within the area selected to put on the conference for that year.  The conference is rotated each year, thus guilds are not expected to participate more often than every five years.  A location and theme for the conference are selected and a startup budget is funded by the CNCH Advisory Council.   Although each conference may have a different theme, there are workshops, lectures and seminars to enhance your education.  In addition you will find equipment, supplies, looms, wheels, yarns, fleece, wools, computers and computer drive looms, demonstrations and a host of other fiber-related goods and notions.  For many weavers and spinners, it is an opportunity to shop for supplies that can last all year.  

Handweavers Guild of America, Inc.

The Handweavers Guild of America (HGA) is an international fiber organization.  Our guild is a member of HGA and many of our local guild members are also individual members of HGA.  As an individual member, certain programs are available that are not available through the Guild’s membership.  These include:

     •  The Learning Exchange

Provides for weaving samples or small spinning skeins for everyone in your Learning Exchange group and, in return, you receive other group member samples.  Your work is evaluated by an experienced teacher.  Every member of the group receives all of the evaluations in order to learn and inspire others, as well as to draw inspiration from others.

     •  Learning Through Correspondence

Called TLC, for Teaching and Learning through Correspondence, this independent study is for intermediate-level participants.  It is for any HGA member in the areas of weaving, dyeing, spinning or basketry.  You select your own study topic and pursue your own goals for a year with guidance from a knowledgeable advisor.  You are responsible for supplies, samples, and mailings.

     •  Certificate of Excellence (COE)

Available in handweaving ,handspinning, dyeing, and basketry. Any individual member of HGA is eligible to apply for the certificate in any of the disciplines. For information about specific areas of interest, contact HGA.

     •  A magazine  Shuttle, Spindle and Dyepot

A great magazine full of information about members and exciting articles, as well as beautiful photographs of work by notable weavers.  An insert in the magazine provides information about HGA and updates about what everyone is doing.  If you do not join HGA, note that the magazine is available in our guild library.

Complex Weavers Organization

The purpose of this organization is to share information about complex weaving (8 shafts or more), as well as to encourage interest in it.  There is a board of directors, and there are several standing committees.  The group provides study groups for all members.  A catalog is provided with membership.  For information about membership contact HGA at its website


As an individual member, you can attend HGA’s biennial conference called Convergence at special membership rates.  You are also eligible for the HGA award in recognition of outstanding works exhibited by fiber artists at local and regional exhibits.  There are HGA representatives in each state in the US and in Canadian provinces, as well as in several other countries.  For further information write to Handweavers Guild of America, Inc., 3327 Duluth Highway, Suite 201, Duluth, GA  30096-3301, Ph: (770) 495-7702

September 2009




P O Box 1012, Sonora, CA 95370

Article I. Name

Sec. 1 The name of the organization shall be Mother Lode Weavers and Spinners Guild.

Article II. Purposes

Sec. 1 The purposes for which this Guild is formed are:

a. To provide education in the handweaving and spinning arts and crafts.

b. To promote public interest in them.

c. To assist members in improving their proficiency and out put.

Article III. Membership

Sec. 1     Anyone who shows a real interest in spinning, handweaving, or related crafts may apply for membership in the guild.

Sec 2     Those who became members of this guild between April 1, 1974 and June 30, 1974 are charter members.

Article IV. Dues

Sec.1     The membership dues shall be set annually by the Executive Board according to need.

Sec.2     The fiscal year shall be July 1 through June 30th. Membership dues will be due on June 1 and delinquent July 1st . (Revised Oct 8, 1991).

Article V. Meetings

Sec.1     One regular meeting shall be scheduled each month, except July and August.

Sec.2     The Executive Board shall have the power to change the date of any meeting

Sec.3     The President may call a general meeting at any time.

Article VI. Officers

Sec.1     The Officers of the Guild shall be President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer.

Sec.2     The President shall preside at all meetings of the Guild and the Executive Board, and shall appoint the Chairpersons of the Committees.

Sec.3     The Vice President shall preside at all meetings in the absence of the President and may serve as Program Director at the direction of the President.

Sec.4     The Secretary shall keep the records of the organization.

Sec.5     The Treasurer shall collect all monies and pay all obligations.

Article VII. Executive Board

Sec.1     The Executive Board shall consist of the four elected officers, the immediate Past President, and the Chairpersons of the Standing Committees.

Sec.2     The Executive Board may meet prior to the regular meeting of the Guild as necessary.

Sec.3     The Executive Board shall have the power to handle business of the Guild when $50 or less is involved.

Sec.4     Minutes of the Executive Board meetings shall be read at the regular meetings.

Article VIII. Elections

Sec.1     In April the President shall appoint a nominating committee of three to select a slate of officers for the new year.

Sec.2     The committee shall present the slate at the May meeting at which time the election is to be held.

Sec.3     The new officers shall be seated at the start of the June meeting.

Sec.4     Vacancies shall be filled by the Executive Board.

Article IX. Amendments

Sec.1     An amendment to the By Laws shall be presented at a regular meeting.

Sec.2     A copy of the By Laws shall be presented to each member as they join or upon request.

Sec.3     Those present at the next regular meeting shall constitute a quorum and a majority vote shall pass or defeat the amendment.





April 9, 1994

1. The standing committees shall be those established by the Executive Board.

2. Guidelines for workshop procedures:

a. The guild member who serves as hostess to the workshop leader will be reimbursed per diem at a rate to be decided by the Executive Committee each fall.

b. The Guild will underwrite all workshops authorized by the membership. Members’ and Guests’ fees will be determined by the costs of each workshop.

c. Members who sign the Final Workshop Register are responsible for the fullworkshop fee, which will be payable at the meeting preceding the workshop by two months. Refunds will be made only if request for same is made in advance and the reservation can be filled by another qualified participant. If there is a waiting list for the workshop participation, any opening in the workshop will be filled in order from this list.

d. In arranging for each workshop, the correspondence shall include a final date for workshop cancellation by the Instructor and by the Guild.

e. Members warping a demonstration loom for a workshop, will be paid for this warp material.

3. The Guild will pay the lunch and travel expenses for the coordinator to attend CNCH meetings.

4. Guidelines for Guild-sponsored sales:

a. Each participating guild member will sign the following release, to be kept in the Guild’s files

“I _________________  , accept full responsibility for all items which I place in the Guild booth for sale and will hold no one else responsible for lost, stolen or damaged articles. I also understand that checks with proper identification may be accepted in payment for my articles and I will assume the loss should a check, drawn in payment for my articles, be returned by the bank.”

b. ‘Proper identification’ as used in the release, means that two pieces of

identification which satisfy the selling member, have been offered and recorded on the check.

5. During Guild meetings any member may announce items for sale; sales may be made only after the meeting has ended. Any member may announce private classes or workshops; all arrangements are to be made after the meeting has ended.

Forms, Newsletters and more are available on the Members page.

Mother Lode Weavers & Spinners Committee Chair Expectations

It is the responsibility of the chair of each committee to make a budget recommendation to the president at or prior to, the executive board meeting in July and to submit any expenses incurred by the committee during the year to the treasurer for payment. There is a form for this purpose.


Plans and manages all aspects of the Guild's two boutiques each year, including securing the locations,

collecting money from sales, and other management details.

Boutique Volunteer Coordinator:

Schedules volunteers to help with booth sales and customer service.

CNCH Liaison:

Attends 2 meetings of CNCH, the Conference of Northern California Handweavers, each year and reports

to guild members all CNCH information.


Keeps a list of who has each piece of guild equipment. Equipment is loaned to members for 1 month.

The chair is contacted when a member wishes to borrow a piece of equipment and is notified when the equipment is returned. Coordinates portable equipment items used for workshops.  


Keeps documented records of events, written articles, photos, etc., available for viewing and

adds to the knowledge of members by bringing history to their attention at meetings.


Coordinates with volunteers to bring refreshments, is responsible for making coffee, assists volunteers with set up and clean up of the refreshment table, leaving kitchen as found and purchases supplies (coffee, tea, creamer, tablecloths, plates, napkins, etc.) for the monthly guild meetings.  December and June are potluck meetings and volunteers help with setup and cleanup for the potluck.

There are no meetings in July and August.


Keeps a record of all loaned and returned books and magazines in the Guild Library which is located in

the weaving studio.  Purchases, accepts and registers new books and magazines.


Prepares the monthly newsletter to send/email to all members prior to the monthly guild meeting, receives articles and photos of interest from members to be included in the newsletter. There is no newsletter in July or August.


Plans at least one community outreach opportunity per year where children/adults are introduced to spinning, weaving and other fiber arts information and demonstrations.  Recruits help.  With the help of guild members, puts together a one month display of weaving and spinning items at the Tuolumne County Library in Sonora, including planning, setting up, and taking down the display.

Program and Workshop:

Plans a program for the monthly guild meeting by securing speakers, or other programs on topics of interest to our members.  Coordinates at least two educational classes for guild members during the year.  There are two co-chairs for this job.


Coordinates with local news publications so that information about guild meeting dates and events are available to the public. This chair works closely with the program and workshop chairs.


Sends out cards to members, including get well wishes and condolences.


Coordinates date, time, and place of monthly home spinning gatherings.

Studio 49 & Retreat:

Coordinates dates, time and place of all Studio 49 meetings and the fall retreat.

Weaving Studio:

Located at Nancy Horne's home, contains floor looms and other guild equipment.  Is reserved when classes and workshops are scheduled . The studio contains the guild library.     


Coordinates and manages all aspects of the Guild's website.

July 2019