Saturday, January 10, 2015

Handwoven cloths to dry your salad greens!

What does a weaver do when she runs out of drying cloths for her salad greens?  Warp up her loom with 16/2 cotton (from a couple of over-sized 2.5 # cones)  and experiment with lace weaves.

Jackie has a lot of skill in designing lace, so in the planning stages for designs for salad green cloths, she devised several variations that could be woven on the same warp.  She was undecided about the sett, but finally settled on 26 epi for these regal additions to her kitchen!  Some of the cloths are a bit crisp and we wondered if one of her cones had some linen in it.  Might make the cloth just a bit more thirsty.

Jackie isn't the only crazy weaver in our group.  Recently Dee's granddaughter told her that she never uses paper towels to mop up messes - always rags which she washes and reuses.  Dee's gift to her granddaughter was a collection of handwoven rags.  Overcast edges rather than hems, but still! 

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Kimono top and a special baby blanket

 Wendy-Marie has been yearning to weave and sew a kimono top.  She found a plan for the design in an older Handwoven (Nov. Dec 1991 page 42).    Wendy-Marie decided on brown and purple plain weave for the body of the kimono and then added stripes to her warp for the band decoration around neckline, down the front opening and along the bottom of the jacket.  By weaving the trim along with her garment fabric it matched the weight of her kimono -  ingenious!  She also used color stripes along the selvedge edges to guide her when she was sewing the kimono together.  The finished garment is pretty special and looks great on Wendy-Marie's small frame.

Margie made baby blankets that were about 5 years overdue.  (Baby has grown considerably).They are woven with a white cotton warp in plain weave.  The special touch was Henry's Attic Pigtail yarn, which when washed blooms into soft splendor.  Unfortunately, Henry's Attic tells us that this yarn is no longer available.  Margie has her stash, though and will be making more for future great grandchildren.  Henry's Attic suggests bonded cotton chenille for a similar effect.
blanket before washing
blanket after washing

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Towel Exchange

We had a tea towel exchange at the December meeting.  Members that wanted to participate brought a selection of their handwoven towels and  came home with the same number from friend's looms.  It's a wonderful way to remember good weaving friends when you use their towels, year after year.

This year it seemed that lots of people had twill blocks in mind but you can see that there was a great variety in the twill block interpretation.    Hard to choose when it came time for picking!

Dee's twill blocks in shades of green purple and coral

Ingrid's color and texture towels on the left  - and Beryl's twill blocks on the right

Jackie's twill block towels

Betsy sold most of her towels at craft sales, but brought  this violet/blue and coral towel
Mardi had a variety - waffle weave, color gamps
and a sweet baby blue towel
Margie did borders on most of her towels.  The wefts were a variety of cottons and cotton/linen.

Marcy's plaids and stripes

Wendy-Marie's elaborate twill block towels

Handwoven towels.  What a wonderful way to start the holidays. 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

September Meeting Part III

Mardi has been experimenting with waffle weave and towels.  She bought a towel kit from Halcyon Yarns that included 8/2 yarn for 4-shaft waffle weave towels. 

Two waffle weave towels

Three towels and small sample of weft

She wasn't wild about the colors but has enjoyed experimenting.

Dee brought in several scarves she wove in the month preceding the meeting.  Not all of the pictures turned out, so here is a sampling:

The warp for several of the scarves were dyed on Dye day that the guild sponsors.

Dee also brought in some towels she wove with 8/2 cotton and carpet warp.

Dee brought a finished bag.  It is made with cottolin and cotton yarns.  The border is sari silk.

These photos weren't the best and the background of carpet didn't really help to do justice to these nice pieces.  Hopefully our regular reporter will be back at October's meeting.

Friday, October 10, 2014

September Meeting Part II - Towels

Here's more from our meeting last month.  Jackie decided to weave some towels since she hasn't woven any in a while.  She used 10/2 cotton sett at 24 epi to create a ton of towels using a classic two block twill from Carol Strickler's 8-shaft book.

She was able to get a broad variation in these towels by using different weft colors and varying the vertical size of the blocks. 

Jackie also shared a scarf she wove with cotton, silk and rayon yarns with random colors across the warp.  It was woven in plain weave. 

Wendy-Marie shared her 4-shaft herringbone towels.  These were woven mostly with 8/2 cotton and cottolin. 

These are in beautiful colors and each towel looks really different.  Here's some detailed pictures:

All of these towels would be a great addition to anyone's home.  Nice work!

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

September Meeting - Part I

We had an interesting meeting in September.  Unfortunately our usual photographer/reporter wasn't there, so it falls to me (Ingrid).  Because life always gets in the way, this is a bit late and will be drawn out over several blog posts. 

Diana shared nine different squares of fabric she wove in preparation for doing a collaborative project with a quilting friend for the Holiday Cheer lap robe project for December.  She was inspired by an article in the January/February 2004 issue of Handwoven magazine.  These squares are all woven in Spot Bronson.  She used 10/2 cotton sett at 24 epi for the warp.  She used 3/2, 5/2 cotton and sewing thread for the weft.  The fabric was woven upside down to ease the treadling.  Below are all of the nine different patterns.  Although the treadling is different for each, Diana only used two tie ups for all nine designs.

Sue H has been working to make curtains for her home.  In an effort to use up existing materials and not have to buy new yarn, she found some fabric she wove several years ago.  She did weave 8 yards of the cotton trim fabric - used to create the loops for the rod - with what she called a pico edge


More from our talented members soon...

Monday, September 08, 2014

Dee Jones and Her Bounty of Fair Entries

There is nothing quite as nice as a collaboration between two textile artisans.  The lovely prize winning scarf with yarn spun by Sue Flynn and woven by Dee Jones is draped around a special jacket woven and sewn by Dee Jones.
Dee wove this shawl with April and Forsythia in mind for the Nevada County Inspired category.  She knitted a special loopy trim to finish off her asymmetrical garment.

Dee spun textured purple yarn for these two inspired scarves.  The left photo is a knitted lace and the second photo shows the yarn used as weft in a twill design.

Dee always makes the best bags and this year she really got inspired with her long handled tote shown on the left and upper right (with a blue ribbon).  The story is that she wove what is now the handle of the bag as a scarf.  Finding the fabric too stiff to use as she originally intended, she turned it into the long, over the shoulder strap for her tote and finished up with a row of beads!  The bottom purse has lovely details of beads and a special button closure.
Then, there are all the rest of Dee's entries - most of which received blue ribbons.  Clockwise from the upper left is a supplementary warp design that Dee loves to make in all varieties.  Her twill towel is woven with 50% linen and won the blue in the bast fiber category.  The shawl is elegant and warm - another blue ribbon winner.  And finally on the right corner is some bright red yardage that Dee wove with a top in mind.  Now she is thinking maybe another shawl -- we shall see what kind of magic touches she will add!