Current Exhibit

ORUUC is delighted to present tapestry weavings by long-time church member Carl Bretz from May 28 through June 23.

Tapestry Weaving
Carl Bretz


"A Weaver’s Yarn"

A long time ago, I enjoyed rummaging about in my grandmother’s attic.  There I found a fascinating spinning wheel.  Grandmother told me that it once had been used by her family, and that I could have it. It is still a prized possession.

Long before TV, I amused myself in the evenings by helping my mother with her rug braiding by rolling strips of fabric into balls.  It was magical to see my mother make beautiful and useful rugs out of worn fabric.

In grade school, our teacher assigned us to read Silas Marner by George Eliot, a classic story of little Eppy and the kind weaver Ravelo.  The story has made a lasting impression on me.

Much, much later, I was employed in several hospitals where weaving was used as part of the Occupational Therapy Program for recovering patients.  It was intriguing to see patients throwing shuttles.

In the 1970’s, I had a stressful work situation that kept me near the telephone as well as being a caretaker for my daughter who was slowly recovering from major surgeries.  I needed to be close by but also needed a stress reliever.  I learned that Gertrude Schecter was giving weaving lessons at her home in Belmont, MA.  She accepted me as a student, and I was hooked.

In 1994, I moved to Oak Ridge with my bride, Rosemary Burns.  At her suggestion, I checked out the Appalachian Arts and Craft Center’s weaving department.  I was welcomed warmly by Ellen Cain and a group of weavers.  It was through the Craft Center that my involvement in weaving really took off.  Sharing, problem-solving, show-and-tell, and occasional workshops enriched my weaving experience immensely.  Grace Foster offered a workshop in tapestry weaving.  I found tapestry to my liking, and have continued to work at it.  Further instruction from Marti Fleisher has also been very helpful. 

I have a great deal of gratitude to all of the people who have inspired and taught me along the way.  



Interested in Exhibiting?

Planning is underway for exhibits in the ORUUC Gallery through September 2017. For artists interested in a showing contact Nancy Starr at or call 865-483-8684.