Long Thread Podcast: Justin Squizzero

Season 8, Episode 8: From his studio in the garret of his New England farmhouse, Justin produces the kind of cloth that would make weavers in every century sigh in admiration.

Anne Merrow Jan 27, 2024 - 3 min read

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Justin Squizzero loves exploring the frontiers of technology, seeing how he can tune a piece of equipment to produce a complex textile. The technology that fascinates him reached its peak before the 20th century. Weaving on an old loom doesn’t mean trying to turn back time, though—it means choosing the most refined technology to create the handwoven fabrics that he envisions. If a modern tool is better than the historic one (like the laser cutter that produced the small metal rings called mails, which were needed to to convert his loom from weaving coverlets to damask), that would be one thing. For all the supposed advances in technology in the last several hundred years, though, the best tool for weaving fine linen damask is still the one invented by Joseph-Marie Jacquard more than 200 years ago.

Man in wool beanie and gansey-style sweater dressing an antique loom Justin Squizzero sits at his jacquard loom in the Burroughs Garret. Photo courtesy of Justin Squizzero

Studying with Norman Kennedy and Kate Smith at the Marshfield School of Weaving helped Justin deepen his understanding of and fascination with the tools and techniques of 18th- and 19th-century weaving. What began as a winter occupation between summers working in museums led to beginning a business as a traditional handweaver, becoming a regular teacher in School’s unique curriculum, and most recently taking on the role as its Director.

In Justin’s weaving practice, discovery and ingenuity are as vital looking to the past as to the future.

This episode is brought to you by:

TreenwaySilks logo

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Yarn Barn of Kansas logo

You’re ready to start a new project but don’t have the right yarn. Or you have the yarn but not the right tool. Yarn Barn of Kansas can help! They stock a wide range of materials and equipment for knitting, weaving, spinning, and crochet. They ship all over the country, usually within a day or two of receiving the order.

Plan your project this week, start working on it next week! See yarnbarn-ks.com to get started.

Links

The Burroughs Garret
The Burroughs Garret Instagram
Marshfield School of Weaving
From Wool to Waulking video
From Wool to Waulking online course

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