KOEL Stories

The Woven Path: Farron Feiner

KOEL Stories
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Bursting with lots of colors and personality, California-based weaver Farron Feiner's works are inspired by her outdoors experiences. Her large scale landscape weavings was what caught our eyes on Instagram and we were completely sold by the rest. A former fashion designer, Farron tried to hit it out of the park in the fashion industry before coming full circle to pursuing weaving. After brushing her weaving skills in a Maryanne Moodie's workshop, she set up her Etsy shop selling one-of-a-kind wall hangings that have an organic and rich feel, imbuing any room with a luxe bohemian vibe. We had a chat with her about her favourite pieces and more. 

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5 Things About Farron Feiner…

Early riser or night owl... More of an early riser. I love to get up, work out and then get started with the day!

A song to get you into the creative groove... Right now, DAMN. Always, anything NICK CAVE.

What did you aspire to be when you were 5... An Obstetrician. I came close haha!

3 essentials we can find in your bag... Vitamins, Aesop Hand Cream and Smith's Rosebud Salve.

If you weren’t a weaver, you would most probably be doing… Still grinding in the fashion industry, but who knows. 

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1. Tell us about your background and what led you to choosing weaving as a craft.
I studied at CSULB and enrolled in the Fashion Design & Merchandising program. That major was part of the Family and Consumer Sciences Department, primarily focused on sewing for the surf and sport industry. I wasn't vibing with it at all. Later, I found out they offered a Textile Design major that was part of the Arts Program geared more towards what I was interested in. I went in wanting to design hand printed textiles. Weaving on the loom (we had large floor looms) was a prerequisite class I had to take and I fell in love with it. I took it every semester until I graduated. 

2. What made you want to take your passion to the next level?
It's kind of a basic answer, but it happened organically. I went into the fashion industry after college and was working long hours, flying almost 30 hours a month sometimes. Eventually, I left the fashion industry and finally had time to create things again. I really missed having a creative outlet. I ordered a lap loom immediately and took a Maryanne Moodie's workshop to brush up on my weaving skills (She's so knowledgable, it's so inspiring! I highly recommend one of her workshops if you get the chance).

I started making weaves as gifts. Eventually I sold them on my Etsy shop and started an Instagram page (this was so scary for me at first. I had to build the courage to put my work out there to be judged). Social media is really where I took off. People were requesting for custom pieces, stores wanted to order my weaves wholesale and I was asked to teach workshops.

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3. Tell us your experience of teaching weaving workshops.
I'm lucky, teaching workshops has always been a fun and positive experience. My goal is to arm my students with the techniques they need to execute whatever weaving design idea they have and get them excited about the craft.

4. What kind of materials do you like to work with?
I love interpreting my surroundings through unexpected colors and textures. I'm drawn to a mixture of cotton, silk, mohair and roving yarns. I use weaving as a tool to display the beauty of different fibers.

5. What is your favourite piece of finished product and what inspired you to create it?
It's a tie between my California Coast tapestry and Ladies and Gentleman We Are Floating In Space. The California Coast tapestry was one of my first large scale landscape weavings. Mother Nature is always incorporated into work. The quiet freedom I feel at the loom echoes the experience I get when I'm in the outdoors, which is why I am continually drawn to nature as inspiration for my work. 

The other piece is Ladies and Gentleman We Are Floating In Space (I often name them after songs or bands I love). Circles allow me to interpret landscares in a different way while also creating flow & movement. Circles are challenging for me, but I like being pushed out of my comfort zone. It helps me grow and sometimes yields the best results!

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6. How is the yarn scene like in Long Beach, CA?
Not great, unfortunately. There's one specialty store, Alamitos Bay Yarn Co. I travel a lot, so I like to go to yarn shops whenever I'm in different cities.

7. Is there any interesting or particularly memorable/interesting moment in your career as a professional maker?
Being featured on KOEL is dope! I made a 3x6' custom piece for the tasting room at Masia de la Vinya Winery in Temecula (which combined two of my favorite things – wine & weaving)! I'm partial to working large scale, so I love those opportunities. Working outside of my element and with other designers has been amazing. For example, I made pillows with Lykke Wullf. Seeing my woven pieces take on different functions is exciting!

8. Advice for those wanting to make the switch into crafting full time?
Trust your gut! Your intuition is there and it talks to you, but you have to have faith in it and listen, whether it's with taking risks artistically or making business decisions. 

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Photo Credits: Farron Feiner