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paper and thread

March 22, 2018

slowly stitching and spinningstitching on paper

Velma’s handmade paper using different plant materials

using handspun threads

a soft, strong paper stitched with singles cotton

amazing how strong the cotton was – it didn’t break or fray

when finished the paper felt like leathery fabric

in contrast is the Canadian thistle paper

with a rough texture and significant exposed plant material

stitched with singles silk, dyed with kakishibu the texture didn’t change much

on a fine, light paper the circle is stitched with kami-ito

paper thread plied with a very fine Japanese silk

a circle woven on the same paper

warp threads stitched on the outline with weft woven on the surface only

the thread is 2 ply silk dyed with sumi ink

weaver me loves this one

it is very difficult to capture the colour of the red eri silk

a small plied skein – this will keep me spinning for a long time

and finally – on the second scarf a red border adds a little colour


March 17 2018

March 17, 2018

” Be still and know that I am

Be still and know

Be still


                                                  St. Patrick

in March 2011 I broke my wrist, which slowed me down – just a little

I wrote a series of blogs on colour

 green is here

it is not a colour I use often so organizing pictures was interesting

I wove krokbragd at one time – maybe I should do some more

it would definitely use some stash

green tea is a daily routine

always on the lookout for lichen

and of course there is always the greenback

it’s not easy being green


heavenly silk

March 16, 2018

last night at the guild

guest speaker Coleen Nimetz – a lady with a passion for silk

she worked on a silk farm in Laos

picking mulberry, tending the silk worms, reeling and dyeing silk

she raised silk worms – in Saskatchewan – in the winter

she is an instructor at Olds College in the Master Spinner’s program

and at Ply Away in the U.S.

she has been published in Spin-Off and Ply magazines

she doesn’t weave but she does knit – her knitted lace shawls are mind blowing

reeled silk, many, many fine filaments and then plied several times to get a lace-weight

excuse me if I’m raving but I haven’t been so impressed in a very long time

the natural dye colours in this tiny, pile weave carpet are stunning

intricate pattern in a fabric brought back from Laos

although she wasn’t sure about the technique I think it must be supplementary weft

in the center of the first picture is some Red Eri silk

I’ve been waiting for my favorite fibre store “Knotty by Nature”

to get an order from India – by coincidence it arrived today

I couldn’t resist 200 grams of Red Eri silk roving and 100 grams of Tusser roving

the sun shining through highlights the gorgeous colour

it is like spinning gold

on a drop spindle so I can enjoy spinning silk for a lo-ong time


Spring fever

March 14, 2018

it is finally warm and dry enough to start work in the garden

apologies to all those still getting snow

six hours up and down the step-ladder and the cedar hedge is approximately ten inches shorter

oh joy – the sky is blue and everything is blooming

April’s tapestry is started

a self-portrait

another first – weaving the image sideways

I’m committed to using only handspun yarn

which can be a challenge – the background is a very pale natural grey

seen at the bottom of the picture

the only yarn in the stash was too fine so two yarns are used together

the boro quilt is coming together

the old yukata fabric is patched together and basted to the back

testing the woven binding

it looks a bit Western – guess this is a fusion boro

and the weaving goes on and on

the constant colour changes makes for slow weaving

so much faster if using only one shuttle – one weft colour

at times like this I ask myself “are you crazy?”

but it is only a moment in time


March 6, 2018

it feels so good to finish a project

an entire year of work – safe in a wraparound case

cutting the holes to insert the clasp cords and holders was easy

lucky my chisel was exactly the correct size

then it was just a matter of fitting and gluing them

and covering the inside

there is a double cover that folds inside itself

not perfect but I’m happy

The tapestries were meant to be my monthly project for 2018

they don’t use up much of “the stash”

and they take a considerable amount of time

once a week I visit an elderly Master Weaver in her care home

I try to take something for “show and tell” – this week it was the tiny tapestry ( 5″ X 6.5″)

her first question was “what is it”

then she spent the remainder of my visit thinking about how to make it into something useful

a pocket on a jacket, eyeglass case or book cover

it is very rewarding when she is engaged and thinks about what she once loved so much

now my question is “what’s next”?

Marching on

March 2, 2018

starting a new month

the alpaca/merino blend is a delight to spin

the 2 ply yarn is soft, light and lofty

and very black

I’ve been hesitant to start making a book box for my 2017 monthly journal

worried I’d make a big mess

to prepare the silk cover material

light weight, two-sided interfacing is ironed onto the wrong side

when the paper backing is peeled off the fabric surface is very shiny – the glue

a very light mulberry paper ( roll on the right) is ironed onto the shiny surface

following the instructions carefully and using vast amounts of glue

I covered the previously cut book board

and glued a paper lining on the inside

Japanese paper and on one end a piece of Velma’s beautiful handmade, eco-printed paper

Velma sent me bone clasps – twice because the first one was broken

waiting for the glue to dry – thank you dear blog friend

on another project – I took an old yukata apart(cotton, summer, unlined kimono)

to use as the backing for the boro piece I’ve been stitching

the shibori circle finishes the last corner

and on the loom

twill and lace blocks in silk and cotton

it is going to be a busy month



fibre-y things

February 25, 2018

the weather co-operated, snow melted

and the spin-in was a go

a line-up of spinners and wheelsand more wheels

everybody had a good time shopping

Tracy is almost finished building a new processing mill

her alpacas are gorgeous

the fibre is irresistible – I didn’t even try!

I’ve already started spinning the black – an alpaca/merino blend

and I’m going to need more of this alpaca/silk blend

but the loom is naked so it is back to thinking about warps

I inherited several binders of samples from a group called Cross Country Weavers

and have always admired this twill/lace block samplebeautiful with the light shining through

perfect for scarves

and a good day to wind the warp