Monday, April 30, 2012

Unweaving before lunch

I love feijoa season; apple and feijoa crumble, feijoa muffins.  In the vocabulary of my grandson, Mmmmm.

Guess what I had for lunch.
Recently the Yarn Harlot wrote about ripping knitting and winding the used yarn around the ball and the feeling we get when we've reknitted the old yarn and are back to the virgin stuff.
I'm feeling the same way with my weaving, or unweaving.  You would think I could count to four by now, its pretty simple 1, 2, 3, 4, uncomplicated really.  But the number of times I've woven 1,2 1,2 is unbelievable.  Unfortunately, I know there are at least two places where I missed the mistake until too far on to unweave so I'll have to needle weave in two rows and hope it won't show too much.  This might end up in my wardrobe.
The moral of the story is that if it doesn't look right it probably isn't.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Some production, some exhibition weaving

One of the things which stands out in my mind from the lectures by Maryann Stamford at the Professional Weavers Network seminar in March was her saying that it was near impossible to be a production weaver and an artist weaver at the same time.  I'm very much inclined to agree with her as I feel I'm being torn in two at times.  I do a lot of production work for Pauanesia and thoroughly enjoy the collaboration we share.  This year I have two pretty big exhibitions I am working towards and that doesn't take into account the Creative Fibre exhibition showing now in Blenheim or Creative Experience later in the year in Hamilton or Fibre and Fleece at Opotiki.  So I keep weaving, not very time efficiently, but one brings in the pocket money, the other inspires creative development and I want both!

Now on to the important stuff.  Remember back here, well here it is drying on the deck rails
and a close up of the twill structure
and now production has started
and just so I don't relax too much I've started on an exhibition piece.  Inspirit Gallery invited me to join several other artists in an exhibition called "Spinning a Yarn" to honour wool and the land while the Field Days (a huge agricultural exhibition) are on.  The warp reflects the colour of the tui and I'm crossing it with wool called blue lagoon though it also reminds me of the Coromandel seas I look at each and every day.  The structure is false damask 3:1 and to make it easy on myself I'm lifting the "1" shafts but all the glorious warp colour is on the bottom and I see the weft dominant side.  You'll have to wait and see what I do with the "gap" in the warp.  I have a plan!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Whew that was close!

Whew, that was close.  After a particularly busy day yesterday I made a boo boo.  I'd woven about 4 metres on a length of fabric and cut it off the loom and then wove through about half a blanket on the Mecchia loom.  It was 10pm so switched the computer off and turned off the loom drive box and said (insert very rude word).  I hadn't stopped the weave program and had no idea where I was up to.  Decided to sort it this morning and went to bed, luckily, not giving it another thought.  In a 48 row repeat pattern I had to try 42 of them before finding the correct place.  Thank goodness it wasn't longer.

I'm about to full the fabric length in the washing machine.  Its nearly 7 metres long, 39 inches wide and weighs just under 1.5 kilos (8 ply wool and mohair).  I'm wondering how others would go about fulling this.  As I have a commercial size washing machine, snaffled when we sold the motor camp, I don't think I'll have a problem.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Audio books

A couple a Christmas's ago my family gave me an MP3 player so I could listen to podcasts while weaving.  I recently discovered the audio book section at the library and have just listened to a couple of gems.

"Escape" by Carolyn Jessop who was born into a radical polygamist cult.  At eighteen, she became the fourth wife of a 50 year old man and she had 8 children in 15 years.  She wanted out but two things had to be in place before she could leave, her husband away and all her children at home with her.

"An Eagle Named Freedom" by Jeff Guidry and read by John Pruden.  This is a hauntingly beautiful tale of a remarkable friendship between Jeff and Freedom.

Both are an excellent listen.

By the way I read somewhere that a weaving podcast may be starting; has anyone heard?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Exhibition by Rex Homan

A friend of mine, Rex Homan, has the most wonderful exhibition showing at Spirit Wrestler Gallery, Vancouver, Canada until April 21, 2012.  Have a look here.  'Raven Dreaming' allows Rex to honour the birds of the Pacific Northwest coast in his own way.  I was lucky enough to see quite a few of the pieces and they are truly beautiful.

Fruit from the dye pot

A page from my workbook

Mohair weft drying


Weaving has started

Monday, April 16, 2012

Anawhata blankets

is a link to a photo of the blanket talked about here
I'm a bit red faced by the write up but accept it gracefully.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Red warp and new stash

Managed to catch sunrise the other morning which doesn't happen very often.  We've been fascinated by the container boats lined up on the horizon waiting to enter Tauranga harbour since the trouble, as in strike action, started at Auckland port.  At night their lights are quite magical.
 This jumble is 7.5 m of warp for a length of fabric.  Red is quite difficult to capture without tweeking in photoshop.  These are a deeper ruby red with scarlet and crimson.  It went on the loom very easily and is half woven at present.  9 tpi and a mohair weft.
 And this is some stach enhancement that found its way home with me.  Its all wool and I have a couple of projects in mind for the blues/teals already.  The lighter shades can be over dyed if I need to.
Back to the reds, no time to rest.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Pirn basket

Meg suggested we have an April Spool's Day by showing what's on our pirns today.  Well mine aren't very exciting.
All but one pirn are for Mecchia shuttles.  Black (top left) wool from grey fabric just finished, navy cotton under it from shibori fabric, purple wool on side delivery bobbin I have no memory of,  the rust cotton falling off the bobbin is for waste thread, the metal bobbin for a Nitsckhe shuttle has linen resist thread for shibori, the green mohair is from the Anawhata blankets just finished, the bright yellow wool is waste and the rust I can't remember but a scarf probably as the shuttle is small and light.  Thought I had a lot more pirns than that though, wonder where they've gone.