The Fields-Penn 1860 House Museum is participating in the 2014 American Craft Week through Oct. 12.
‘Round the Mountain: Southwest Virginia’s Artisan Network, in collaboration with the Virginia Tourism Corporation and the Artisan Center of Virginia are the sponsors of this year’s American Craft week. American Craft Week is an industry-wide, national celebration of hand-made in America. The Fields-Penn House will host artisans from Holston Mountain Artisans and Round the Mountain as part of a week-long celebration of local artisans.
According to Abingdon’s Coordinator for the Historic Properties, Amy Looney, “The Town of Abingdon is committed to preserving our local and regional heritage through events at our historic properties like the Abingdon Muster Grounds and the Fields-Penn House. Participating in events like American Craft Week offers our visitors a unique opportunity to see how modern artisans are keeping traditional crafts alive while also learning the story of how those handicrafts were a part of everyday life in previous centuries.”
On Oct. 8, Holston Mountain Artisans woodcarvers Linda Childers and John Dickens will spend the afternoon whittling on the front porch of the Fields-Penn House from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Debbie MacLeish from Dreamland Alpacas will bring her loom to the Fields-Penn House on Thursday, Oct. 9, beginning at 10 a.m., to demonstrate weaving. On Friday, Oct. 10, Holston Mountain Artisans’ Leta Bishop will showcase her modern approach to crafting. Bishop’s talents include beadwork, transforming silks into wearable art, and what Holston Mountain Artisans director Donna Price calls “not your mother’s crochet.”
To conclude craft week on Sunday, Oct. 12, the Fields-Penn will host “Sunday with Susan.” Looney will lead guided tours of the house as Susan Fields and discuss the various “needle arts” of the nineteenth century, with demonstrations of embroidery and knitting. MacLeish will also return to the Fields-Penn House on Sunday, performing weaving demonstrations.
The Fields-Penn House 1860 Museum is located at the corner of Cummings and Main Streets in Abingdon’s downtown Historic District.