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May 28, 2014

what to weave?

after 40 years of weaving I’ve never settle down to focus on one technique

or one particular item

I’m not a production weaver – weaving the same thing day after day, year after year would drive me crazy

I’d take up gardening – oops – already done that!


the obi – described in the West as the sash holding the kimono closed

 is a wonderful work of art and frequently costs more than the kimono

there are many different ways to tie the bow

obi groupa group of obi I wove years ago for an instructors show at an ANWG conference

traditionally, handwoven obi have limited wearing opportunities, they are only worn for very informal occasions

P1040926when designing the pattern it is necessary to carefully consider how the obi will be tied and worn

approximately 40% of the length is folded in half and wrapped around the waist twice

it may be desirable to have a nice pattern on the center front and again on the bow section

I’m weaving this one with a random pattern throughout the length

P1040924the warp and main weft is 15/3 silk noil

the stripes and inlay are handspun, natural dyed silk

as a casual summer obi it doesn’t need to be lined but with many ends from the inlay I am planning a silk lining

it is warped in a pattern from Marguerite Davison, “Hair Line Effect”

one of my first weaving books and one I frequently refer to after 40 years


a book I find helpful for information on all things regarding kimono

P1040929illustrations and instructions are excellent and easy to understand

what to weave next? – maybe the kimono?

14 Comments leave one →
  1. May 28, 2014 3:24 pm

    Do you focus mostly on weaving functional items, or do you sometimes weave projects that are purely just art ? Items just to look at rather than functional art (the functional pieces are an art form too).


    • May 28, 2014 5:14 pm

      Deb – I don’t weave tapestries and in my mind that is one of the only textile forms that isn’t functional. some of my pieced (from woven fabrics) and stitched pieces are wall pieces.
      Kristin – I have worn kimono years ago when I had a Japanese friend who helped me get dressed. I plan to start practicing by myself.
      Kerry — I know older weavers in the guild who don’t weave any more because they don’t know what to weave – I hope I never get to that point.


      • May 28, 2014 7:28 pm

        Wonderful! I hope you’ll show the results. For some reason I think we will run out of time before we weave all we want. Some people just lose the inspiration perhaps.


      • May 28, 2014 10:03 pm

        Kristin – possibly it has something to do with the individuals motivation – some of us are driven to create.


  2. May 28, 2014 3:06 pm

    How fun! You’ve got me thinking regarding obi weaving. Deciding what to weave is usually easy for me– I let the yarn tell me what it wants to be. The book looks like something I could use. Do you ever wear kimono? I think you would weave a wonderful kimono!


  3. May 28, 2014 1:47 pm

    Deciding what to weave sounds like deciding what to blog about–I keep a list of ideas for that, too. So far, I have no trouble with ideas about what to weave!


    • May 28, 2014 1:55 pm

      Kerry – usually I don’t have a problem with what to post but after 40 years of weaving and a house full of textiles it can be a mystery at times.


      • May 28, 2014 2:11 pm

        I understand–I feel sort of the same way about quilts. Sometimes I wonder just why I’m making another . . .


  4. May 28, 2014 11:44 am

    i can’t imagine wearing kimono, or obi, but they are beautiful garments.


    • May 28, 2014 12:14 pm

      Velma – it definitely has its challenges and it takes a lot of practice. in Japan there are professional kimono dressers and they study for a long time before becoming certified.
      Lis – it has been on Amazon, and fairly inexpensive.
      Renee’ – I keep a list of ideas but sometimes hit a blank stage.


  5. May 28, 2014 11:21 am

    I have to admit that is the one thing that always throws me… what to weave.


  6. Lis permalink
    May 28, 2014 11:05 am

    I am sure your woven obi will be stunning and hope you will wear it. I don’t know that book, I must see if I can find a copy.


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