Sunday, July 24, 2016

Shibori scarf

You may remember away back I had the loom threaded for these kitchen towels

and these scarves.

Yes, one warp gets tied to the next and I got to thinking "why can't I make this work for shibori, both warp and weft resists.
And then Rene came home with a gorgeous scarf (and she might tell us who wove it) and I thought warp and weft resist but in blocks; so much fun!
It will be on display as part of the Creative Fibre Tauranga Exhibition opening at the Tauranga Racecourse on Friday 29 July.  And when I see it there I'll be able to tell you what I called it as I can't remember.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Rena Reflection

 Some time ago, probably a long time ago, I couldn't resist buying a skein of yarn from Anna Gratton Ltd simply because of the colour.
I wish I was a better photographer to be able to show all the nuances of colour but this pic of the threaded warp will give an idea.  Would love to know how Anna does it!  I manipulated the yarn in the warp to get the colours to stack and this shot below shows what resulted.
Woven warp faced to highlight the colour.  
Warp threaded on a 5 end extended twill.  
Weft a fine black rayon woven in a network twill which was unnecessary as it can't be seen but hey, had to turn the loom on anyway.
And the very wearable finished garment. 
This will be on display at the Creative Fibre Tauranga Exhibition next week.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Back in the day ...

Way back in the day when manufacturing happened in country and didn't happen off shore when I was a machine knitter before discovering weaving there was a knitwear manufacturer called Glengyle who had a sale of there surplus yarn once a year.  A lot of angora, from the rabbit that is, and I don't recall what else.

The first year I went with my son in his push chair, which makes it about 38 years ago, and was rather knocked sideways by these women on the mission of shopping for as much yarn as they could gather.  By the second year I had it sussed.  Son in care, paper clean sacs in hand and when the doors opened the game was to get as much yarn in the clean sacs as possible then go find a quiet corner and sort out what you wanted and discarded what you wouldn't use.  Oh I miss those times!

Anyway cones of this yarn have been boxed up and shifted from home to home and more has been added from sales and donations until recently I thought if I don't use it it should be dumped.  How could I dump it when it has been so loyal providing me with dreams of creation and coloured rainbows?  So ...

it has now become the softest yummiest blankets.
"Coast"  white wool warp and angora weft.
You would think that would make a dent in the "stash" but no, plenty left for more blankets.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Pfeilraupe Wrap

You might remember back here
I talked about this lovely corriedale/silk sliver I spun trying to get a 5 ply or sportweight as some folks call it.

It knitted beautifully into this Pfeilraupe Wrap which is free on ravelry, thank you.  
In the past the wraps I've knitted have been too short so this time I cast on an extra 50 or so stitches (can't remember exactly) and instead of short rowing 5 stitches then 6 stitches I did the calculations so I could short row 6 stitches each time and keep the increase rows and slot rows as per the pattern.
Its an interesting pattern that needs reading right through before you start.  There is enough information with the instructions and charts for it to work, you just have to keep all sections in your head at once.
I shall enjoy wearing this when the weather cools down.  Its mid winter and still too hot for woolies.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Cloak Exhibition - Cloaked in Feathers Series

I am also showing two pieces of wall art in the Cloak exhibition, part of my Cloaked in Feathers series.

Since earliest times Feather Cloaks have been worn. Druids and Shaman, the central figures of an ancient clan's magical and religious life, are recorded as having the power to transform themselves into different forms, in particular the bird. Bards, Druids and Shaman also wore very colourful cloaks made from the skins of birds.

In traditional Maori culture many birds were seen as chiefly and the korowai or feather cloak is still used as a sign of rank and respect.

I am weaving this series to share the beauty of our native birds of New Zealand so people learn to treasure and protect them, hopefully avoiding any more species from going extinct.
The flightless takahe is a unique bird and a survivor. Even though the takahe remains on the critically endangered list it has clung to existence despite introduced preditors, hunting and habitat destruction.

The Takahe was believed to be extinct until it was rediscovered in 1948. Its night cry was described by Maori as the sound of two pieces of ponamu being struck together.

The Tui, endemic to New Zealand, are boisterous, medium sized, common and widespread birds of forest and suburbia.  They look black from a distance but in good light tui have a blue, green and bronze irridescent sheen and distinctive white throat tufts (poi).

Adults have a notch on the 8th primary feather and this feather quivers from the narrow part creating the whirring sound common in flight.  They have a noisy unusual call but can also replicate human speech.

Tui are notoriously aggressive and will defend a flowering or fruiting tree from all comers.  They vigorously chase other birds away from their feeding territory.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Cloak Exhibition - Enchanted Forest

For the past 3 years a group of weavers from the Professional Weavers Network of New Zealand have been working towards an exhibition titled 
Cloak - Variations on a theme
Cloak conjures many images; as a garment, a cape, mantle, robe, tunic.
Cloak of secrecy; cover, screen, curtain, shield, conceal, veil
To cloak; hide, mask, conceal, disguise, camouflage
Cloak and dagger; espionage
Cloak as protection; enfold, wrap around, protection for the environment
Cloak as myth; magical, invisibility cloak

Armed with the above concepts to ponder Pete and I set off on a trip to Croatia and Rome in 2013.
I know I took lots and lots of photos of statues of hulking Romans draped in cloaks but they're on another hard drive.  But when I saw the painting of "Our Lady the Protectress" in Dubrovnik Gallery I was smitten and had a basic idea for my cloak piece.  Loved the rich opulance, the over the top clasp and the thought of hidden bold pattern on the inside of the gold exterior.  
And there we have the cloak as protection of the people.
 Along the way there have been many other images which took my eye such as Lady Macbeth's gown and over dress.  Love the strong greens and bronze.  There is a whole book of cloak files on my pinterest site; wish I'd had more time, some of those garments are extraordinary.

And so "Enchanted Forest" emerged.

"Cloak" will be on show at Pataka Gallery, Poirirua, 17 June to 17th July
before travelling.
I won't get to see it until October when it shows at the Wallace Gallery, Morrinsville.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Starburst Shawl

I while back, like in 2013, I had a little play with Snowflake Twill by way of the Starburst pattern which first appeared in Weavers magazine, Issue 13, 1991.  The article has been reprinted in the book "The Best of Weavers Twill Thrills".
Recently Sophie asked me to share the draft:
Hi Dianne, may I ask you to share that beautiful Starburst weaving draft? A friend of mine found your post, and we both loved the Starburst! And now we want to weave it :-) 

This pink picture is as seen in the book Twill Thrills
and below is my interpretation showing quite a difference in the star but still recognisable as Starburst to the point I feel copyright would apply.  What do you think?
This is an 8 shaft draft plus I used an extra 4 shafts for a basket weave selvedge.

Snowflake drafts are formed by combining various twills.  They include an area of advancing twill, usually reversing in the middle but in this draft the advancing twill does not reverse and the runs are lengthened to widen the rays.  Areas of point and straight twill are used along with some satin.
"Twill Thrills" includes a very good article on composing Snowflake drafts and would recommend the acquisition of the book.