I am a weaver and I make cloth, the same way artisans did 300 years ago. I start with boxes full of yarn spools, lustrous linen, cotton as thin as sewing thread, natural wool yarn still smelling faintly of sheep. I make the warp and then I dress the loom. I thread the heddels and the reed, I tie down and tie on and then I start to make cloth. I throw and catch the shuttle and I treadle with my feet. The cloth grows slowly on my loom, five days a week, eight hours a day. Folk costume aprons in red and green, stripy dress fabric, waistcoat fabric patterned with small trees, simple wool or linen twills for lining, warm blankets, light and soft shawls, sturdy pillow fabrics. At the end of the warp, I cut through the warp threads, roll up the big bale of cloth, and send it to the tailor or which I cut into lengths of scarves, shawls or blankets.
My name is Charlotte Engstad and I am a Norwegian weaver and designer-maker working from my studio in Tromsø, Northern Norway. I specialise in high-end textiles, be it bespoke yardage, collaboration projects or limited series of own designs. I wish to preserve and to pass on the knowledge and the skills of tradtional handweaving, thereby contributing to preserve a microscopical part of our immaterial cultural heritage. I am accredited to have apprentices and high school students have had their practice in textiles once a week in my studio.
March 2016: Folk art grant from the Norwegian Cultural Council
January 2016: Funding from Innovation Norway for Norwegian wool project
Februrary 2016: Master weaver diploma
May 2014: Leonardo da Vinci grant, EU
December 2013: Crafts grant form Midt-Troms museum
June 2011: Journeyman of handweaving
2010: Starting grant from Innovation Norway
May 2009: Graduation in Weaving from Forsa Folkhögskola, Sweden
1998 – 2007: Attending workshops of the Norwegian Crafts Society