Marlinespike Rope Work with Tim Whitten

Thurday, May 12 – Sunday May 15th

Join us for this 4-Day workshop on the banks of the Scuppernong River  in Columbia, NC.   Pocosin Arts offers this program for artists and sailors who want a great start to the 2016 Summer sailing season with an immersion in the maritime tradition of rope work.  Learn the fine points of Marlinespike seamanship from one of its finest modern masters.  You can also visit the new Stiletto Sailing boatworks just steps away from our studios or take a cruie  on their latest prototype — the Stiletto X.

Workshop Description: This workshop will provide students with instruction in marlinespike rope work.  A marlinespike is a splicing tool.  Marlin refers to the hemp or twine used to do binding and rigging on ships.  Marlinespike rope work describes skills involving the use, care and repair of rope — particularly ropes used in operating a sailboat. Early mariners learned these skills from cultures around the world and these skills are still critical to modern sailors.  Tim will instruct on knots and splices, lashings, whippings, braiding and fancy work, mats, monkey fists, etc. as well as the proper use and care of rope.   The techniques taught in this workshop will enable you to create tools for home or boat which are both useful and beautiful.

Classes times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday: 9:00 – 5:00 pm (with an hour for lunch), and Sunday:  9:00 – 12:00 pm.




Bio:   Tim Whitten is a fiber artist whose work is inspired by sailors and fishermen. His craft harkens back to an era when all the rigging on sailing ships was made of natural fibers. He creates traditional forms of rope work, such as bell ropes, sea chest beckets, ditty bags and fids as well as sculptural, jewelry and architectural pieces.

Tim possesses undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees in engineering, but a fascination with fancy marlinespike rope work drew him away from a career in academia. Tim started working with rope as a hobby and began accumulating more and more pieces. He started his website, in 2002, and demand for his craft took off. In 2008, Tim and his wife moved to the island of Deer Isle, Maine, and opened the Marlinespike Chandlery in the town of Stonington. The waterfront shop and studio is a perfect canvas for Tim’s collection of all things nautical and old.  For more about Marlinespike Chandlery and Tim’s work see Marlinespike Chandlery.


Cruise with Stiletto Catamarans:  Stiletto Catamarans will begin offering cruises to all who wish to enjoy a more exhilarating  view of  the Scuppernong River and Albemarle Sound. Sunset cruises are available.  Sunset is at 8 pm, embark at 6:00ish (1 hour after classes end) and return at 8:30ish.  Please see Sail Stiletto Catamarans

Tim Whitten -- Marlinespike Rope Work Workshop

Materials fees assessed at time of workshop.


Riverside Housing is limited and available on a first come, first served basis. Rooms are furnished with 4 XL-twin bunk beds (quad rooms) or with one queen bed (private rooms). There are 7 quads and 2 private rooms in the lodge. If reserving a bed in a quad room, please consider your ability to access the top bunk - or to convince you roomies to allow you to use a lower bed. If you have questions about accommodations, please call; 252 796 2787.