Tuesday, March 30, 2010

March's last bits of show and tell.

There were a couple more bits of show and tell at the March meeting, but they are blogged elsewhere and in detail, so I'll give you the links instead of pictures and a post.

Ingrid has a stack of freshly woven towels all ready for the fall and winter craft sale season.  Check out the details here.

Beryl (that's me) is still milking the 12 yard wool warp in her blog

Looking forward to April's meeting and also the program that several of us will be giving to the local Wearable Arts Group.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Spring Forward in Dee's Newest Shawls

Dee brought three (yes three) new shawls to the meeting.  I am simply amazed at her loom output.  And, Dee also knits up a storm, does design work for Mountain Colors and finds time for designing and making art quilts.  Whata woman!

First up is a purple shawl with mixed warp and a subtle diamond design.  The weft is an interesting wool/rayon mixture.  The wool dyed purple (Dee also dyes), but the rayon naturally stayed white in the acid dye bath.  The shawl has a sparkle to it because of this.

Next are the Blues.  This would be a great wardrobe addition to someone who lives in blue jeans and can't be bothered with dressing up.  This is woven with yarns of cotton, rayon and bamboo. 

And the last shawl is another mixed warp and woven in a two block twill design, except that the blocks are only treadled once.  This makes for a texture design, rather than a block design.

Modeled here by Gus

Close up of the fabric.

See something you like here?  Visit Shawls Unlimited and you can probably find a Dee original that has your name on it.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Inspiration from a Painting

Last month's blog post featured some towels that Gus wove using Wayne Thiebaud's painting, Large Pond as inspiration. This month we have two more interpretations.  The first is a top woven and sewn by Sue H.  shown below. 

Sue added a band with fringe around the neckline and also the bottom of the back making this a short sleeved jacket.  The warp for the trim is the same as the material for the top, but the weft colors differed.  Click on the photo above for a more detailed view of painting and handwoven top.

Here is a close up. What a great garment using the painting as color and texture ideas.

The next handwoven inspiration comes from Marcy's loom.  She wove a series of towels in colors found in the painting. 

All of the towels are lovely, but my favorite color combination is in the close up below.  The structures are twill and basketweave.

By the way, Thiebaud is pronounced Tee-bo!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Rugs and Baby Blankets - Problems and Solutions

Jackie H. has been weaving a series of rugs and right now she is working on rag rugs.   She brought a trial piece to the meeting that has been delegated for a little mat that the dog sleeps on in the kitchen (to keep him out from under Jackie's feet).  This rug is woven in a two block 3/1 and 1/3 twill; Jackie used strips of 1.75" wide fabric from her yardage stash for the body of the rug.  Then, she gave us a tip on how to finish off a hem.  She weaves four shots of rug warp, then several shots of fabric strips that are cut narrower than the rest of the rug weft.  For the turning point on the hem, there are another four shots of rug warp, several more of the rag weft and finish with four shots of rug warp yarn.  This makes the hem less bulky to turn and it also turns easily where there is a line of rug yarn used as weft.

The technique used on the hem, might come in handy for other handwoven pieces in which the hems are bulky.

Spring time always brings babies!  Marcy wove this lovely cotton blanket as a gift, but was dismayed that the fringe was so troublesome when she washed the blanket.  She has decided to stitch along the edge and then bind it with a satin binding instead of leaving it fringed.  We would love to hear from our readers about what they think of fringe on baby blankets and their favorite finishes.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Handspun Silk on the Loom

The March meeting was at Gus home and since the group always likes to check out what is on the host's loom, I thought I would start with these pictures of her current warp.  This is handspun silk, folks.  Both in the warp and the weft.  Gus spun this silk over the past five years and gathered it all together for weaving yardage for a shell top.
Look at the waterfall of blue silk over the back beam.  Simply gorgeous.  

The picture below is more of the silk waiting to be woven.

Gus showed us a pillow that was pieced together from samples she wove in a deflected double weave class.  The pillow backing and the piping are handwoven plain weave to coordinate with the pillow colors.  The different designs are simply the reverse side of the cloth put together in a traditional nine patch design.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Show and Tell Included Beauties from Around the World

I have an online friend  (Indira) who sent me this fantastic handwoven piece of sari cloth as a gift.  She has a large collection of sari cloths and instead of letting them languish stored away, she is making them into scarves  and selling them at 1000 Markets. Here is what Indira says about this piece of handwoven cloth

This piece of cloth is about 35 years old and is from Kanchipuram (a historic city in Tamilnadu, India). The yarn is mulberry silk from Karnataka, India, which has the largest sericulture industry in India.

The gold brocade (zari) is threads dipped in liquid silver and 24k gold. Because of that it still retains its bright shine.  As for as weaving goes, Kanchipuram silk saris are considered very strong and durable because of the double warp-double weft twisted thread technique the weavers use. The two different thread color for the warp and weft in this scarf give it a special shimmer.

 Kanchipuram silk's distinctiveness is also that the border is woven using interlocked warp and the brocade is woven using interlocked weft. Actually if you cut the border exactly on the line where it is woven into the body, there will by no frayed edges. The shoulder piece is also constructed similarly. The huge steeple design along the border is an innovation on the basic motif of "temple" (common in saris made in southern part of India) which came into fashion around the time this sari was made.

Barbara has a fantastic collection of ethnic textiles from all over the world.  Her daughter brought her this basket made from rolled up newspaper which was woven into the basket and then finished with a clear sealer of some sort.  The basket maker was from Bangkok, Thailand

And talk about complex, Barbara also showed us this piece of warp and weft ikat cloth which was  dyed and woven in Thailand.  The yarn is handspun cotton.

I can hardly wait until the next meeting to see what everyone has been doing.  We have had some snow storms and lots of rain, so maybe people have been weaving.