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February 19, 2021


from flax to linen

it is a long, labour intensive process

The Magic of Linen by Linda Heinrich

published in 1992

with excellent photos of weaving done by members of the Victoria Handweaver’s and Spinner’s Guild

is an old classic

and here is a newly released Utube video by members of the guild

it is a must watch for everyone who loves fibre, fabric and the traditional process

with thanks to Brenda Nicolson, Beatrice Keizers and Raven Ranson


10 Comments leave one →
  1. June 9, 2021 4:22 am

    Very interesting video. I’ve forwarded it to my Guild – we have just acquired some antique linen, which we are going to learn to spin and some members have started growing flax.


  2. vdbolyard permalink
    February 21, 2021 5:26 pm

    Jean, this video made me so happy to watch. Imagine me, forty years ago raising a patch about 10 feet square with gorgeous Swedish white flowering flax seed. It was all done in my backyard and such a joy to learn. My oddball tools, including a hot pink afro comb for seed removal and the weirdest brake in the world worked well enough for me to learn a bit about it. later, when I learned to dress a distaff, I felt like I’d achieved some real cred as a fiber artist!

    Liked by 1 person

    • February 21, 2021 10:34 pm

      Hi Velma – the group has been doing this for a few years and are getting really good at it. I was very impressed with the video, thought it was worth everyone seeing how complex the process is. Hope you are doing well in your new home.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Going Batty in Wales permalink
    February 20, 2021 3:05 am

    I have been thinking a lot recently about the ethics of textiles and it has brought to mind how incredibly labour intensive and highly skilled the making of fabric was in pre-industrial times. The contrast with the world of fast fashion and cheap t-shirts is stark. I doubt if I will ever plant flax but I am glad that there are people who keep the old knowledge and skills alive.

    Liked by 2 people

    • February 20, 2021 8:33 am

      Sue – I heartily agree, don’t think people understand how damaging the whole field of textiles/clothing is to the planet, including the amount of chemical dyes used. A small group of very dedicated people of been working on the flax/linen project for a number of years.

      Liked by 2 people

      • June 9, 2021 4:24 am

        Processing by hand certainly does look labour intensive but it must be very satisfying work.


      • June 9, 2021 10:25 am

        Helen – as the people involved in the flax/linen project have been doing it for several years I would assume that they find it satisfying.

        Liked by 1 person

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