I’m not sure when it was that I first worked with Sara Goldenberg White on something for Handwoven, but I’m pretty sure it was the Raveling Plaid Dress from the September/October 2012 “fashion” issue. Most of the other designers submitted proposals for projects that were fairly incredible but also fairly traditional. Sara’s dress, on the other hand, was a wild and wonderful rigid-heddle-woven dress where the skirt was comprised of hundreds of free-flowing novelty and ribbon yarns. It was unlike anything I’d seen in my year at Handwoven, and I knew immediately that this Sara was my kind of person.
Sara’s Raveling Plaid Dress from Handwoven’s 2012 fashion issue. Photo by Joe Coca
I had the wonderful opportunity to work with Sara again and again for Handwoven (although not as much as I would have liked), and each time I was astounded not just by her exquisite sense of color and pattern, but by how she was able to render these things so beautifully on the rigid-heddle loom. Then, Easy Weaving with Little Looms came on the scene, and naturally Sara became one of my go-to weavers—somebody always game to weave when I desperately needed this or that for an issue.
The Butterfly Wings Scarf from Easy Weaving with Little Looms Summer 2020. Photo by George Boe
Sara goes beyond just being an excellent weaver (although she is—have you seen her Butterfly Wings Scarf from the Summer 2020 issue? Absolutely incredible!). She’s also a lovely human being. It’s this combination of kindness, patience, and seemingly boundless creativity that makes Sara such a sought-after teacher. While I’ve never had the opportunity to take an in-person class from her, I did jump at the chance to help out with her new video course, Pick-Up Stick Basics and Beyond.
I knew her course would be good, but it turned out even better than I could have imagined. She explains each step in such a clear and concise manner that it made me want to stop watching and get to weaving right away. Sara also gave out a few new-to-me tips that I cannot wait to use in my own weaving life. (After 11 years at Handwoven and 6 years at Easy Weaving with Little Looms, I’m constantly learning new tricks and techniques that completely blow me away.)
So anyway, there you have it. A brief introduction to the wonderful Sara Goldenberg White: incredible weaver, teacher, and person. Whether you’re learning a bit about her for the first time or have enjoyed her projects in Handwoven and Little Looms, I do hope you give her new video a try. It’s the perfect pick-up primer for anyone who wants to go beyond plain weave on the rigid-heddle loom but isn’t quite sure where to start.