Wednesday, September 27, 2023


The 2022-23 summer just didn't happen as far as blue skies and sunshine went.  In January the country was hit by Cyclone Hale and in February the devastating Cyclone Gabrielle caused havoc followed by several tornadoes making landfall on Waihi Beach.  Its very unusual for tornadoes to make it to land here; usually we just see water spouts out to sea.

This is the view from my kitchen.  The dunes used to be level at the higher point.  The massive waves breached the dunes and formed a lake behind the scrubby trees.  By about seven in the evening we could see that half the lake had drained away with the outgoing tide so we decided we were safe and didn't have to evacuate.

So while Cyclone Hale was doing its damage I was weaving away on a length of fabric to make a jacket for myself.  At one stage I looked out the window and realised I was actually replicating what was going on in the ocean so I called the piece "Chaos".
This is a four colour double weave with black and sand parallel threading and dark purple and turquoise in the weft.  The original warp line was networked with a 2 end initial which is what gives the shimmery effect on the cloth.  The treadling is where all the action is with two curving, wavy lines intersecting each other.
This year the Creative Fibre Society had their Festival in Porirua, near Wellington.  At the last moment I decided to enter this weaving as a fabric length regretting that I hadn't had time to make the garment I'd intended.
After the selection date I received a very unusual email from one of the Exhibition organisers and reading between the lines I came to the conclusion I was going to receive a prize.  After some discussion with Pete we decided we'd go on a ticky tour to Wellington via New Plymouth where I was able to deliver quite a bit of work to Kina Gallery, visit friends and be tourists.
Looking through the list of awards I had decided if I was going to get one it would be the Complex Weavers Award.  Imagine my dismay when it wasn't my name called out; I must have read the message wrong, how was I going to tell Pete I made a mistake.  Then it got to the Supreme Award from Creative Fibre and to my surprise and delight I heard my name.            One very thrilled and proud weaver.
 As an aside, in March, about a month before Festival, I was in Christchurch airport with a couple of other weavers waiting for our flights home.  Hanne asked if I was going to Festival and I said no, I had too much going on with workshops I was organising and I don't recall what else.  Mind you, I said, if I got the major prize I could be persuaded to go.  Well that was a big joke causing lots of laughter.

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