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  • Memorial gathering, Tuesday 7 April

    Obituary notice for Susan Robbins, business owner in Shelburne Falls, MA

    Susan Lynn Robbins, 56, of Shelburne Falls, died on April 1 in Waltham after a long illness.

    Born in New York City on June 6, 1952, she was the daughter of Jean Robbins and the late Dr. Jacob Robbins. She grew up in Bethesda (Maryland), and graduated from Walt Whitman High School. She studied violin from the age of five and during high school years attended Greenwood Music Camp in Cummington and the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara.

    In 1990 Susan moved to Shelburne Falls, where she opened a weaving shop, Textile Arts, on Bridge Street. In 2000 she remodeled the former Shea House on Water Street and moved her shop to the small building next door, adjacent to the Bridge of Flowers. In December of 2005 a fire demolished the interior of the Shea House, home to the restaurant “A Bottle of Bread.” Susan spent the following year rebuilding the house and creating space for a weaving school. With business partner Becky Ashenden, in 2007 Susan created Vävstuga Swedish Weaving & Folk Arts in the refurbished building, using the top floor for rooming accommodations and as a bed and breakfast.

    Susie (Susanna) will always be remembered for her kind friendship and eye for beauty. It shone through in her weaving, gardens, and the lovely details of the building that houses Vävstuga Swedish Weaving & Folk Arts.

    She is survived by her mother, her sister Alice Robbins and husband Walter Denny of Amherst, her brother Mark Robbins and wife Robin of Seattle, and their children Andrew, Katherine and Jennifer.

    The community will host a Memorial Gathering open to the public on Tuesday, April 7, from 4:30 to 8pm at Vävstuga, 16 Water Street in Shelburne Falls, MA 01370. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Vävstuga Scholarship Fund at the above address. Burial will be at the convenience of the family.

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