Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Pounamu blankets

Sunrise with cloud formation over Tuhua Island.
If you follow diannedudfield'sweaving on facebook you will know that a while back I wove a blanket dyed in the colours of pounamu (greenstone) to compliment the By Nature Exhibition now showing at Inspirit Gallery, Tamahere.  This partner will soon be in Pauanesia in Auckland.
 This closeup shows some of the nuances of colour, one of my favourite blankets so far.
 I'm in the middle of a big secret project which involves over 50 metres of weaving, all threads hand dyed first.  This probably explains my absence of late.  Come June quite a bit of work will be able to be revealed.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Anne's sliver

About this time last year my friend Anne passed away having put up a grand fight against cancer.  
I was gifted some of her stash (thanks Peter) including this sliver of 75% corriedale, 25% silk from Anna Gratton Ltd.
I spun a single and plied it with navy cashmere commercial yarn.
I don't know what this style of spinning is called (except not very good) but I held the commercial yarn straight and let the handspun semi wrap around it; except when Blindspot got exciting or when I fell asleep and then I found myself reverting to regular spinning.  
What, don't you keep spinning while you sleep?
My plan is to knit myself a Pfeilraupe wrap so I'm off to make a tension sample.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Ann's kitchen towels

This post is really a record for me.  The photos are awful but if you look at the light stripe on the outer edges you will see the treadling line followed.  Threaded in 6 shaft echo, 28 tpi, 2 threads of 20/2 cotton together, charcoal and rust alternating.
My brief was the colours in these bracelets.

 Below, echo weave, pohutukawa green weft. 2:1 twill

 Below, turned taquete, apricot weft, two shuttles one with single thread the other with double thread.  The pattern is not very distinct.
 Below, 4 colour double weave with white and green in weft.
Below, 4 colour double weave, apricot and green in weft 
 Below, apricot weft, echo.
 Below, echo, white weft, treadling line same as threading
 Below, echo with 2:1 twill (which I just read is called jeans twill)
 Below, echo with pale green cotton/linen weft
 I think this last is echo again with a cream weft. 
 I seem to have missed photographing one which I'm sure was 4 colour double weave.
 Out of 9 towels there are just 2 left, 5 will go to the States and 2 are off to France.

Bottom of the pile!

I'm pretty sure something I want to use is in that banana box at the very bottom of the pile.  
Question is, how much do I want it??
And know, I don't have a chain saw in the cupboard but no clue what's in that box.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

A busy time

So to back up a bit I sacrificed a long weekend in Auckland with family and grand kids to finish exhibition work on time.  I am delighted with the end result but was it worth what I gave up.  I doubt it, I miss the kids hugs and kisses, but I kept my promise.  Exhibition opens in Pataka Gallery, Porirua in June, pictures then.

The following weekend (long again), Thursday through Sunday, we were off to Napier, the New Zealand Art Deco city, to attend a wedding.  On the way down we stayed a night in Taupo and walked around the edge of the lake.  No, not all the way around, just a couple of kilometres and back again, very picturesque.
 Barely got my suitcase unpacked and the laundry done and I was off again to the annual Professional Weavers Network Seminar at the Rob Waddell Lodge, Lake Karapiro.  Bay of Plenty members had had a little input in the organising early in the piece but in the end we were asked to bring the essentials.  This is about half of refreshments.
 Going through the tiny country town of Hinuera, population about 5, we came to a police check point.  At least the bottles had stopped rattling by the time we stopped.  May I see your license please Madam.  Sure I said its in the back and started to open my door.  He took a look in the back, said, sure you have one.  Oh yes, its in the back.  We got waved on with smiles and thank you's.  Actually population of Hinuera is 891.

We had a wonderful weekend with more talking than you could believe.  We spent a morning at the Fashion Department of the Unitech seeing what the students do in the degree program.  There was a forum discussing where craft fits versus art.  We discussed a future exhibition.  There was a pop up workshop on network drafting using graph paper with Agnes followed by Rene showing us how to adjust patterns for different fits and looks.  Monday morning it was my turn to share some of the knowledge I have re shibori both hand stitched and loom controlled.  Have to say it was disappointing the number who stayed for the workshop considering the weeks I had spent preparing new ideas to show.

The commitments weren't over yet as Rene and I had the delightful job of looking through the portfolios of 5 new weavers for the New Weavers Award to be announced at the Creative Fibre Festival at the end of April.  Isn't it wonderful, 5 new weavers to support and encourage.

And, of course, I still have my business to keep ticking over.  This poncho is made of fabric woven on the knitting machine.  I couldn't face the thought of stitching in all the ends so made a feature of them.

 My first day back on duty at the Cargo Shed in Tauranga I discovered a note in the day book that said I had been appointed the display person even though I had said I was hopeless at it!!  So I took the bull by the horns, so to speak, and took the opportunity to have a major shift around.  Its a work in progress and I'm thinking each time I go in there will be more things to change.

Before leaving for Lake Karapiro I had put a warp on the loom for 5 metres of fabric, tied onto the previous warp but a change of tieup and treadling, this time 4 colour double weave.  This first pic of fabric still on the loom is the nearest to true shades.  It looks like old tapestry fabric to me.  I'm thinking a jacket.

 But was it a pig to weave, very sticky yarns, the weft wouldn't beat in properly and I'd have to stop and ease out the humps and if I missed one I'd have a loop sticking up out of the fabric.  Had to unweave back to the loop or use a needle and ease it out to the selvedge.  One warp thread is called aubergine the other was hand dyed in several shades of red including burgundy (a long time ago) and the weft of mid grey and red, Tex 110/2 wool.
Now I have a few tea towels to make to fill an order then its on to a big scarf order, to say nothing of blankets being asked for.

This one is for Jack.  Look who comes for breakfast and dinner on my back lawn.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Exhibition work

For the last month or so I've been busy working on exhibition pieces.  I can't show them until the exhibition opens but a sneak peek at some beading on one of the garments won't let too much out of the bag.
 I had some warp left over on the loom so wove off 2.5 metres of fabric.  This hasn't been fulled yet but you can just see an echo, particularly at the bottom of the pic.  Once its been wet finished I'll put it in the stash till it tells me what it wants to be.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

I'm still here!

Just to touch base and say I'm still here and working away with my vast fibre stash.
There are many projects started, half finished or almost done.  A jumper for myself just needs stitching up, a jumper for daughter has the back done but need to download the bulky knitting machine to do the stocking stitch front and sleeves.  Another jumper done but for the cap sleeves.  Some machine knitting that didn't work and needs to be re-styled!

I've been weaving away on shibori samples for an overview of shibori I'm presenting at the Professional Weavers Network Seminar early in March. 
And now I'm about to thread up for an exhibition piece to be finished to deliver to said PWN seminar and won't be able to talk about that until later in the year when the exhibition is hung.

I did facebook this scarf but omitted to blog about it.  Again the Swedish block threading 2:1, 1:2 twill.  Alternate blocks use a variegated yarn of unknown source, possibly Anna Gratton Ltd, which I manipulated while winding the warp so the colours stacked on each other, hence a purple end and a green end.  Other blocks are green and teal with a black merino, possum, silk weft.