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slow and steady

December 16, 2014

the linen napkins were very slow to weave

about 16 inches in 3 hours!

P1060128the length of the napkin strips (before a join was necessary)

and the width of the warp were similar

the bumps caused by the overlapped join occured in the same place

although the napkins were stained they had not been well used

  they were still stiff and would have been easier to weave if washed several times

P1060122Heather (via James) sent me her tablecloth pieces

leftover from sewing pyjamas – that’s recycling at its best!

they are lovely and soft, hopefully the weaving will go more quickly

I cut them at approximately 1/2 inch and the lengths are much longer

some of them will go into the indigo vat in the summer

P1060125still stitching every night

my fingers have callouses

P1060123for some soft relief I’ve been spinning very fine tussah silk

P1060100another day another sunset

re-purposed

December 12, 2014

the sakiori (rag weave) jacket in this Japanese craft magazine is tempting

as are the cushions and bags

P1060118

the ball of cut fabric is one napkin

how many napkins would need to be cut?

for the bag – it is possible

but the jacket would need a tablecloth, or two

and the linen needs to be cut not torn

searching for an inexpensive, damaged tablecloth

I found this hand towel

P1060108never used, still with a label

Webb’s Irish Linens

“dew” bleach

of course I won’t cut it

and an assortment of buttons, mostly mother-of-pearl

P1060116

my friend Stephanie, from Knotty by Nature

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recently attended the Indigenous Woman’s Circumpolar Conference

in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories

she stitched this hood – to stay warm

from a fur coat she received from a customer

it is lined with beaver

and decorated with beadwork

the ends are finished with her childhood mittens, creating little pockets

truly a treasure

changes

December 9, 2014

crazy weather – from record-breaking cold to record-breaking warm

all in the same weekP1060074the Straits of Juan de Fuca

with the Olympic Mountains in Washington State in the distance

P1060078

another change is on the way

P1060080it is only 3 p.m.

P1060086the sky is ominous

can you see the freighter in the lower left corner?

waiting for a pilot boat to escort it to Vancouver

P1060087sunrise the next morning

and now we have gale force winds and lashing rain

Winter on the wet coast!

hiding out in the studio and staying dry

P1060090instead of using a thick and thin white cotton as the second weft

I’ve switched to an indigo dyed cotton boucle

and the red linen warp yarn between the block changes

P1060093and then I had one of those perfect “ah ha” moments

my Mother’s and Grandmother’s  threadbare, hole-y linen napkins

make wonderful rags – and aren’t just sitting in a drawer

waiting for my daughter-in-laws to throw them out!

P1060097inspired by Heather’s recycling of linen tablecloths

to make wonderful pyjama  bottoms

thank you Heather

eventually they will go into the indigo vat!

recycling the blues

December 4, 2014

shimacho – sample book

P1060067the covers are old, very fine linen

I love how the indigo highlights the damask pattern

P1060064I’ve stitched in extra pages for more samples – as time goes by

the end papers are from Japan

Velma’s handmade paper pages

handwoven samples and Japanese pieces

I need to take the time to make more books

it is so satisfying

P1060060 stitching is progressing – slowly

all the pieces of the top layer are stitched onto the backing

there are small areas where the orange futon cover fabric is exposed

the brown pieces are dyed with kakishibu

overall it measures 33″ x 40′

P1060069now there is a whole lot of stitching left to do

P1060063at the loom I’m weaving sakiori (rags)

P1060059log cabin

it all looks very blue!

bits and pieces

November 30, 2014

a surprise dusting of snow and chilly temperatures P1060038

yesterday was spent at a major craft fair, inside where it was crowded and warm

 P1060040

there was some wonderful creative work

and a lot of the same old “stuff”

great pottery

I didn’t get a picture of my favorite booth – but I did get a piece that had my name on it!

P1060050

from Red Pot Pottery

the potter is Korean and her work is charming

much of her work is very bright and colourful, it’s on my list for next time

also this small bowl and spoon

P1060046from Jamie Willms

as if I need more pottery!

the eyelash shawl is washed, soft and fuzzy

P1060031

shimacho are Japanese textile sample books

usually handwoven stripes, many indigo dyed

young brides took a book, with family patterns, to their new home

these books are becoming scarce and cost a fortune

P1060053I’ve started to make one of my own

using both Japanese fabric scraps and my own handwoven

P1060056

Velma‘s beautiful handmade paper for pages

my favorite glue – Japanese rice paste in a green squeez-y tube

(I’ll have to make a special trip to Japan to get more!)

it will be stitched together with a Japanese stab binding

with indigo dyed linen covers

luxury

November 28, 2014

last night was “tea and tell” night

good food, wonderful weaving

it was so much fun I forgot to take many pictures

P1060019

four of us exchanged the group challenge

(free advertising for our favorite grocery store!)

months ago we each brought some really NICE yarn

 exchanged it in the paper bags, choose what to weave

and exchanged the weaving, again in the paper bags

we all wove scarves, no surprise as the yarns were all silk or luxury yarns

P1060024

Arlene drew my yarn (silk) and wove huck lace

Heather got the scarf

P1060023

the texture and colours are beautiful (I didn’t get a close-up)

Heather wove a very simple silk and cashmere shawl which was as light as a feather

it proves you don’t need a complicated weave structure – absolutely gorgeous

P1060022Kathy was thrilled with it

P1060016Kathy wove an eight harness turned twill, in wonderful colour stripes

P1060037it’s mine

it’s soft and warm and the perfect colours

I got yarn from Arlene and she got the scarf backP1050407the one on the right

we forgot to discuss a new challenge

maybe more people will be encouraged to participate

it is delightful to have another weaver’s scarf to wear and enjoy

rainbow colours

November 25, 2014

rainbow colours on a grey rainy day

another warp finished

I couldn’t wait to see how the over-twisted silk would behave

P1060001patiently twist the fringe before washing

the over-twist was woven in random stripes

it gathered as expected, after washing

P1060008

from a finished width of 21.5 inches to 12 inches

difficult to photograph on a grey, rainy day

hung outside in the rain I snapped a quick picture  – can you see the rain drops on the lens?

P1060007

now the fringe on the second piece needs to be twisted

P1060012

I’m hoping the eyelash weft will fluff up even more after washing

the dyes in the warp are; indigo, rhubarb root, pomegranate, henna, madder, cochineal and logwood

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