Brittany Sweigart

I am a fiber artist and Resource Exchange staff member living in Philadelphia. I graduated from Rowan University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 2013. I started weaving on a lap loom in 2014, after attending a workshop taught by Maryanne Moodie. Most of my weavings focus on a theme of repetition either in color, shape, or technique. I grew up in South Jersey, spending every summer helping my Nonna make no less than 500 strands of beads to eventually be made into rosaries for her church. I’d have a bag of sea foam green beads, pre cut thread, and a small metal tool to make knots. A repetitive task that seemed impossible and daunting as a child is now something I incorporate into every weaving.  For instance one weaving, made recently from fabric found at The Resource Exchange, is composed of 90 identical knots made over the course of five hours.

Using materials that are reclaimed just makes sense to me. I moved to Philadelphia almost four years ago and am still in the process of downsizing. I make a conscious effort to limit the stream of new items coming in and to purchase items with the least amount of packaging, to repair rather than to replace. When I first started weaving, using new materials resulted in pieces that felt empty. I prefer to use materials that have been reclaimed or made by people I know. Using reclaimed materials creates depth that new materials alone could never accomplish.To see more weavings and process photos follow @dearvetiver on Instagram!