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peace and love

July 28, 2015

the Tanabata rag strips hung in the maple tree for three weeks

through sun and wind and yes, even rain

P1070297the fabric was dyed with plant material from the garden

as was the heavier backing piece

this was meant to be a quick, fun project

but it took on a life of its own

P1070299

I love the subtle colours

the way the wishes are partially hidden in the weaving

(click on pictures to enlarge)

it has the five colours of the elements, seen in Tibetan prayer flags

blue – sky and heavens

white – clouds

green – water

yellow – earth

red – fire

  did you see the red linen yarn woven through the rags?

once again the wishes are hanging in the maple tree

Love and Peace blowing in the wind

a summer of samples

July 26, 2015

oops! – a threading mistake

P1070286the blue warp thread at the top of the sleying hook

I missed it while weaving samples with a dark weft

I know, they’re just samples but threading mistakes drive me crazy

P1070287

so I tied in a replacement heddle and replaced the warp thread

can you see it wrapped around the pin? (lower right)

P1070288off the loom

two small bags and a set of coloured weft samples

what’s next?

P1070289yes, I do feel a little embarrassed confessing to yet another book

but this one is full of inspiring ideas

Weave Classic Crackle & More  by Susan Wilson

comprehensive instructions for independently designing and weaving crackle

on four harnesses and more

while focusing on one weave structure – crackle

there are detailed instructions for weaving

as twill, overshot, summer and winter and even lace

where to start?

P1070290as I start my students weaving log cabin which is a colour and weave pattern

I’ll start there and advance to eight ( and eventually sixteen) harness polychrome

as shown on the cover

how many warps have I threaded this month??

time to play

July 22, 2015

it is rather shocking to realize how much time is spent on the computer

I only have a desktop, no other gadgets, not even a cell phone

so when it is shut down for several days it is amazing what you can accomplish

P1070278a small piece of shibori

for some reason I couldn’t work out the pattern

once dyed it was much better than expected

P1070262this is the magic moment when you find out

P1070275before dyeing, the gathered piece was tied tightly to a pole

to resist the back

the faint white lines are where it was tied with strong sewing thread

P1070283now that I’ve figured out the pattern a larger piece is in the works

a heavy cardboard template helps to mark the patternP1070276another small bag from the sample warp

the bone button repeats the squares in the weaving pattern

P1070277and the lining repeats the strong colours

P1070282another sample warp finished

even the camera had a problem with the colours and pattern

P1070284there is a strong diagonal movement in the pattern

it would be better if the pale stripe was darker

now on to the next samples.

in the Park

July 21, 2015

Beacon Hill Park is a lovely place to cool off on a hot weekendP1070258but it is not always peaceful

high in the treetops

P1070246the herons are nesting

and this year’s babies, now almost as big as their parents

are impatiently demanding foodP1070247impossible to get a clear picture – it is a struggle of wings, legs, necks and long bills

P1070251eventually mother heron loses her patience and forces her offspring out of the nest

this one is tagging along with a crow

P1070255while father observes the family dynamics from a distance

P1070259and the turtles soak up the sun

P1070261this blog is a test posting after having the all the computer programs

removed, scrubbed clean, re-installed and a new security system installed

some functions don’t work quite the same

I’m stumbling around trying to find my way!

oh, woe is me!

July 16, 2015

you know when you get attached to a blog

and then one day it just disappears – no warning – just stopped

yesterday I came close to doing just that

I’ve always thought that when the day comes

I’ll post a farewell notice

but yesterday (according to the experts) my computer was “browser hacked”

they turned off the pop-up blocker

suddenly all I could get was hideous commercial ads

and then a rather large and serious WARNING from Microsoft

with a phone number suggesting I do something – quick

long story short

I surrendered my computer to a help desk in Florida

6 hours, 3 phone calls and a considerable amount of $$ later

and everything seems normal again

meanwhile, while I worried, I decided to catch up on some sewing

the machine wouldn’t work, needed oil, couldn’t find the oil can

trip to the hardware store, machine oiled

P1070244and I managed to sew one small lined bag without further problems

P1070228and then retreated to the studio

another turned draft – this time 6 shafts

8/2 and 20/2 cotton warp

as the 20/2 was too fine for the weft

I settled on a singles, bourette silk in tomato red

the loom needed some adjustments

I got a little heavy-handed with the tools and took a big hunk out of a finger – left hand fortunately

but sewing and typing are slow

glad that day is over!

moving on

July 11, 2015

this is the last Boulevard sample

P1070221

but not the end of the weave structure

it has great possibilities

P1070215the colours are reversed on the two sides

(and are very difficult to photograph)

turning the draft and using 9 shafts/harnesses

 plus two for plain weave stripes

created three pattern blocks to play with

 it becomes a one shuttle weave – so the weaving goes quickly

perhaps too quickly – because once again I’m asking “what’s next”?

 separating the coloured warp threads makes a nice twisted fringe

P1070217

still struggling with “weaver’s block”

this little book is full of good advice –  if you can get past the cover

P1070218click to enlarge and read the quote on the right

so far I’ve resisted embroidering pot holders

maybe later!

meanwhile, I’ve been going through years of old binders full of design ideas, drawdowns and workshop samples

some of those old ideas are still relevant and a few went into the recycle bin

P1070223still working with yarns from the stash

it is getting smaller – not a good selection of blues left

which makes the challenge even more challenging

oh well, off to wash the kitchen floor.

Tanabata

July 7, 2015

a  Japanese folk tale

tells the story of

Orihime, the weaving princess and Hikoboshi, the cow herder who fell in love

 when they neglected their duties

they were banished to the sky

and are represented by the stars Vega and Altair

they are permitted to meet, across the Milky Way, once a year

on the seventh day of the seventh month- Tanabata

celebrated by writing your wishes on pieces of paper and tying them to branches of bamboo

P1070199this year I wrote my wishes on rag strips and tied them in the Japanese maple tree

with the hope that they will reach the stars

meanwhile over 180 forest fires burn throughout the province

P1070178Sunday, at noon, the sun was just a pale glow in the smokey sky

P1070176our usually clear ocean air had a strange yellow glow

the horizon was barely visible

and the Olympic Mountains, in the distance, had disappeared

P1070180even the crows were unsettled

and we are miles from any of the fires

I think of the many people forced to leave their homes

and the fire crews working in dangerous conditions

P1070204while I am threading yet another warp.

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