Editor’s note: February 2014

Robbie LaFleur

Chance encounters and email conversations are great ways to find articles.  This summer I took a class in weaving on a warp-weighted loom; that’s where I met Heidi Goldberg, who said she would be happy to write an article about teaching a college class in Nordic Arts.  (My favorite line from her article was, “There are many students who have never worked on projects requiring facile hand skills unless it involved a computer keyboard.”)

Heidi Goldberg and Charlie Hovde

Heidi Goldberg and Charlie Hovde share a loom at Vesterheim, Summer 2013

A fortuitous chance encounter led to another great article in this issue, A Piece of Old Finery: The Story of the Nordland Bunad.  Kay Larson learned the story during a trip to a museum in northern Norway.  I was not expecting Laurann Gilbertson’s article about the history of the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum to bring tears to my eyes.  The same thing might happen to you when you read about the items sent from the museum in Nordmøre.  We’re lucky to have Ingebjørg Monsen’s loving tribute to Sissel Calmeyer.  (I’m also happy that Ingebjørg has two more artists she plans to profile in future issues.)  And finally, the snow-washing article is a bonus, yet another chance encounter story.  Enjoy them all!

A Most Important Note

This month’s header image of spelsau sheep in Norway was taken by Annemor Sundbø, and is used with her permission.

It is just a teaser, really, because it will appear in her forthcoming book about spelsau sheep in Norway.  Tusen takk, Annemor!  Norwegian Textile Letter readers – you will be sure to know about the book as soon as it is available!

Becoming the editor of the Norwegian Textile Letter has been a privilege and a very fun challenge.  I’ve been gratified by the willingness of talented writers to contribute, and I have enough ideas for years to come.  When adding Marta Kløve Juuhl’s reminiscence of snow-washing coverlets, it struck me that we can solicit more articles written in Norwegian, and include both Norwegian and English for our readers.

There is a constant learning curve for the technical aspects of editorship.  Based on my experience with two issues, I’ve been coming up with my own style guidelines and determining the best formats for article text and images to be submitted. I’ll continue to experiment with new ways to incorporate media.  In this issue, Heidi Goldberg submitted many photos of her students and their works.  I opted to include them all on a separate gallery page.   I see video contributions in the newsletter’s future.

And it’s not as if this is just one issue appearing on the site.  Scanned issues of volumes three and four have been added in the Archives section.  (But – one issue was not scanned correctly and will appear shortly –  the February 1998 issue.)

Readers are welcome to contact authors of the articles directly.  Each author’s email address is listed at the bottom of the article.  To avoid publicizing email addresses directly on the web, which might lead to unwanted spam, I substitute (at) instead of the @ sign.  For example, instead of listing author@gmail.com, I list author (at) gmail.com.

Robbie LaFleur


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One thought on “Editor’s note: February 2014

  1. Linda Alanen

    Robbie, What an amazing and fascinating newsletter. I need to comment on several things. First, when I was living in Finland the academic year of 68-69, I was introduced to snow washing for rya rugs. I had purchased one there and actually did snow wash it some years later. But I had totally forgotten about it. So, guess what is happening with the next fresh snow?! Laurann’s article brought me more up-to-date with the collection at Vesterheim, what a treasure trove of information she carries. Ingebjorg’s article on Sissel I found to be very interesting. The story of the Nordland Bunad was great and the article on the Nordic Arts at Concordia made me wish to be a student again. What a rich experience for those students. You did a fantastic job and my thanks for it!!!


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