Knitting bags **
Teacher: Riina Tomberg
Riina Tomberg is born in Tallinn, Estonia, living in Saaremaa, Kuressaare. She graduated from Estonian State Art Institute (Estonian Academy of Arts) as a textile designer in 1981, Master degree in Estonian Academy of Arts folk art department in 2004. Riina participated in expeditions to Finno-Ugric people by Estonian State Art Institute and Estonian National Museum in 1978-1986. Riina has participated in many national and international exhibitions of textile art since 1980.
Since 1992, she has her own textile studio and knitting workshop Ruut & Triip OÜ in Kuressaare. Since 2000 , Riina is a lecturer in University of Tartu Viljandi Culture Academy Estonian Native Crafts Department.Riina is the author of a book 'Vatt, Troi, Vamsa - Knitted Jackets from West-Estonian Islands', published in 2006. She has conducted various workshops on Estonian traditional knitwear.
Riina describes her work as follows: "The inspiration for me lies in the traditional way of life, doing things with your own hands for yourself and the closest people around you. You would like to protect them not only from bad weather, but from anything bad that could come across. I would like to use that kind of thinking in my work, even in modern design."
The women on Estonian islands are known for being hard-working - knitting bag was a woman's companion basically everywhere until the beginning of 20th century. Knitting could be done anywhere, specially while travelling. An old saying from Vormsi island consideres a woman without a knitting piece to be sitting like a man. On Kihnu island, the skills of making cotton knitting bags and carrying them around has been preserved until nowadays.
In the workshop, a knitting bag based on traditional Estonian knitting bags is made. Traditionally, scraps of cotton fabric were used. The bag will be made from either square pieces or strips of cotton fabric, much like the style of fabrics that were used to make the knitting bags on the Estonian islands.
This year we will use the fabrics that have been recreated on the basis of traditional printed fabrics used in Estonia in the 19th century, especially on Kihnu island and in Setomaa. The finished size of the bag will be approx. 26x35 cm, to hold items in size of A4.
Participants can also bring their own fabrics if they wish. The participation fee includes the usage of sewing machines and a choice of fabrics needed to make one knitting bag.
This workshop is not suitable for beginners. Basic sewing skills are required.