Monday, January 8, 2018

Holiday Greetings and 2017 in Review

Well I had the best of intentions to send holiday greetings to all my friends, followers and email recipients but we spent several days in Auckland and though I'd loaded pictures before leaving home the reception was so slow I gave up.  Hope you all had a great celebration.

The last 4 days before departing home were spent birthing creating "Flower".  This is an old Simplicity pattern that I had when my daughter was little so not new.  I'm still amazed that I had all the bits bar stuffing to make her, even the hat wire for the wings and the bells for the shoes.  The only change I made was to attach the wings by domes so she can hang them up when she goes to bed.

And so to the year 2017 in review.  January started with some spinning, unusual for me.  I plied this with a 60/2 bottle green mercerised cotton but it still hasn't told me what it wants to be.
February was mostly spent on a commission for a wall hanging "Wave".
All up I wove 32 blankets this year.  First up Kereru.

In March I got back on the dobby loom and wove this gorgeous cotton wrap titled "Spoon Drift" which is the description of the bubbles left when a wave breaks.
"Kakabeak" came off the same warp
and then "Kowhai" which I'm proud to say won the Complex Weavers' Award at Creative Fibre Festival.  This time I used changes in the tie up to change the amount of weft showing on one face of the wrap blending from navy to yellow in a 4 colour double weave.

Also this month I put my dress maker hat on and sewed "Dragon's Breath" from fabric handwoven the previous year.  This was shown in the Fashion Parade at the same Festival.  Later in the year (September) the same outfit was entered in the Bay of Plenty Area Exhibition and I'm very proud to have received Best in Show award.

Throughout the year my Nitschke 8 shaft loom is constantly producing blankets, this time Moerangi - Sleepy Skies.

In May we had a wonderful time on holiday to Melbourne, Australia and areas around.

June was time to work on a series of scarves for Pauanesia reflecting New Zealand native birds.  In this pile from the top Kokako, Tui, Kakapo, Kiwi.  Also did Kotuku. Black Robin, Pukeko.

In July, while taking a break from blankets, I had a play with deflected double weave.  Would like to have time to go back to play with this structure more.

Also used some stash velour and wove a tabby scarf, first time successfully using this fibre.

In August I had a play with shibori scarves
and Paua blankets.

As I mentioned above September was exhibition time and I thought this 4 colour double weave runner a worthy candidate and was delighted to receive the Barbara Wilson Trophy for best woven article.
I called this piece Ravenna as I had just threaded the loom and Peter called me to his computer and said what do you think shall we visit - it was mosaic tiles in a building in Ravenna and reminded me so much of what was on the loom.  (Many hours of planning but trip booked for later this year.)

Also finished this commission for daughter in law and grand daughter just as the weather warmed up.

October was blanket month, this one Kaimai
and Kotare.

November I tied more warps on to the Ravenna one and worked on runners and placemats.

We finish the year with Pohutukawa blankets
and luxurious possum, merino, silk and cashmere loop scarves.
And so the year ended with what seemed like three Christmas events and my son's 40th birthday (how did that sneak up on me) in the middle of them and now my two delightful grand children are staying for 5 nights.  I'm typing this while I listen to them going to sleep.  This will be the second night and I'm exhausted already.  Doesn't happen often so I better get my own shuteye so I can keep up tomorrow.

Wishing everyone wonderful adventures in 2018.


  1. Dianne.... I know this may sound irrelevant, but do you have a favorite groups of colors? Either in hue or groups/combos?

    1. Meg, I have found that I do so much contract work where colours are dictated or decided for me that I no longer have my own identity colourwise. Scrolling through this post or looking at loom waste I do have a predominance of reds or blue group. I also have to have an affinity with what I'm working on or it doesn't "work". I was very unsure of the orange/blue placemats until I saw them hemmed and displayed then I could see the strength of them.

  2. So many lovely pieces, it's inspiring seeing them all in the one post.

  3. Hi Dianne.
    any chance of photos of your looms please - and their details?
    Robin. F