Sunday, April 23, 2017

Dragon's Breath Outfit

 Dragon's Breath is the outfit I made and had accepted for the Runway Show at Creative Fibre Festival in Christchurch this past weekend. 
The outfit consists of an over tunic, skirt and gauntlets.
I imagined the tunic as a kind of coat replacement, to pull on when venturing outside, or just as a roomy, comfortable garment.

The handwoven fabric (4 colour double weave) is highlighted by the contrasting shaggy hand knit collar.

The skirt, 5 x 5 rib, and gauntlets, plated rib, are machine knit.

And that is the end of the secret projects I've been working on the last wee while.
Now back to working on my annual range of scarves for Pauanesia.

Kakabeak Wrap

This wrap, Kakabeak, was submitted for selection in the Creative Fibre Exhibition at Entwine Festival in Christchurch.  Several weeks ago I received a phone call from the Convenor saying it could be displayed in the exhibition if it was not for sale.  The reason given was that the beating was irregular.
Well, of course, I got huffy and just said "send it back to me please".  My reasoning being that if the selectors thought it wasn't good enough to sell then I would think it not good enough to be displayed.

Then I waited to get my hands on the wrap to see if I, as a selector, would agree with their decision.
Yes, there were a couple of rows which weren't beaten quite evenly (I've now evened them out, don't ask!) but overall, no, I don't agree with their decision.  

Kakabeak is woven on a networked warp with an echo of 8 shafts.  The tie up is a plaited twill with 3.1, 1.3, 2.2 twills and a lot of tabby and these do look like uneven beating when held to the light but they are quite correct for a plait.

What about things like Suitability for Purpose, Visual Impact, Design etc.
If anything I might have asked, Where is the Magic?

I think its a pretty delightful versatile garment with the red moon shapes reflecting the Kakabeak flower.

In the end its part of the deal that we accept the selectors decision but I do think the time is coming where guide lines/rules are necessary for participants and selectors.

Kowhai Wrap

Kowhai Wrap has just won Complex Weavers Award at the New Zealand Creative Fibre Exhibition.  There, I've said it.  I've been working towards this award for many years and so excited to have finally achieved it.
The award is for excellence beyond plain weave.
Kowhai is woven in a 4 colour double weave, that is two colours in the warp and two in the weft using 40/2 cotton doubled.  The warp is a medium taupe and light silver threaded in an advancing twill echoed by 8 shafts and the weft is navy blue and yellow.
Ever since the book "Echo and Iris" by Marion Stubenitsky came out I have been intrigued by the changing of colour on the fabric using the tie up.  I find Marion's way of working out the tie up difficult to read so have figured out my own way.  In this wrap there are 6 changes to the centre, or yellow to navy and another six taking it back to yellow.  The other side is the reverse so, depending on how your wardrobe feels, there are two options to wear it.
Picture below shows the subtle blending of colour change.
I've had three sleeps since getting the news and am still smiling, very thrilled.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Moerangi - Sleepy skies blankets

I thought you might like an idea of how my blanket colour schemes come about.  Basically Heather, owner of Pauanesia, sends me a brief and I work from there.  Sometimes the details come from a conversation or it might just be a word that gives me direction.
 With this brief I loved the shots of very bright blue and turquoise so included them and the dark leaves and edges with a hint of teal and royal blue gave a frame to the blanket.
After I've dyed and dried my warp threads (8 metres) I spread them out on the lounge/dining room floor to get an idea of how they sit together, they have to speak to me.  Luckily Dear Husband is tolerant enough to step over them for a day or two. 
Then I had to wait for the downgraded cyclone Debbie to pass before I could full and press the blankets.  They haven't been pressed here on the deck rail.
And then we had more rain and rain so couldn't get outside to photograph them.

And just before Easter we have had another cyclone.  It came straight down from the tropics and was expected to hit us full on.  There were all sorts of warnings to evacuate if on low ground, have food and water for 5 days, etc.  We are on the highest bit of dune so stayed put.  DH prepared by finding the candles and I took a torch down to the loom room so I could find my way upstairs if we lost power.  Lucky for us, but very tough on the Eastern Bay of Plenty the cyclone centre hit land further south.  We got rain, not much wind and kept the power but the seas were majestic.  Supposed to be 2.5 metres above the normal wave.