This is the first year that we’ve had the greenhouse and it’s already much loved. The benches have been added and the first of the seeds have been planted. There’s still room for a bistro set which is a lovely place to have lunch.
Tuesday, March 9, 2021
The yellow, peach and pink plaid runners are off the loom. They made a very satisfyingly large and heavy pile while I was taking them off the loom.
The second runner has more stripes of plaid and it’s longer overall. I have to remember when I photograph these runners for Etsy, to take my time to straighten the stripes. They looked straight on the table but the camera really exaggerates even the smallest of the wiggles!
I really enjoyed weaving these lovely runners and I’m already thinking about putting more plaid runners on the loom.
The garden photo is crocuses. They were hidden under some leaves so they are a little bedraggled but they are very welcomed sign of spring in the garden.
Monday, February 22, 2021
There are many different ways to design a weaving project; do you choose the item, the fibre or the pattern first? For this project I start by looking into the stash for colours that pleased me. What caught my eye were large cones of 3/10 cotton in sunny yellow, warm peach and spring flower pink.
The runners are going to be plaid so I started with the draft for the Lynch tartan, our family tartan. Mom wove the Lynch tartan back in 2014 using wool in the Ancient colour palette of blue, green and scarlet (blog post 1 and blog post 2). I have changed the colours to yellow, orange and pink.
For the first runner I choose to weave double the number of threads in each stripe, for example the pink stripe went from 4 to 8 threads. It made for a surprisingly long pattern repeat of 20 inches! I was only able to get three repeats for the entire runner.
I’ve just started weaving the second runner and I went with a smaller repeat, which is lovely but I’m changing colours a lot more frequently, so the weaving is slower too.
Final Garden Picture is a vase full of willow branches in the front hallway. The branches are lined with fuzzy silver tufts of catkins; they are a lovely sign of spring, and a gift from our neighbour.
Monday, February 15, 2021
This white linen table runner warp was as boring to weave as I’m sure it is boring to read about. This table runner warp was a repeat of runners that I had just woven but the originals had a threading error in warp so I thought that it would be a good idea to reweave them. Well, I couldn’t really get excited about the runners so everything about them took a little longer to do. This is the last runner which was woven with clear blue cotton and it is really pretty. (I have to keep saying that so that I can finish them!)Etsy shop, WovenBeauty. They will be up for sale sometime next week.
I had thought that I would be showing you a picture of daffodils in bloom; here is a photo of the daffs just 5 days ago, now they are buried under feet of snow! I really hope they survive the heavy wet blanket sitting over them.
Monday, February 8, 2021
Waaaay back in 2017 I woven three Double Huck Lace Runners in gold cotton (here). The pattern is really lovely, but the selvedges really were disappointing.
After washing and pressing and really looking hard at them, I just couldn’t put them up for sale with edges that didn’t please me, so they were packed away at the back of the guest room closet.
The selvedges of the runners had been stabilized with 2 inches of plain weave and I was sure that 21 ends of plain weave would be enough to even out Huck’s tendency to bulge unattractively; but it was not to be!
I find one of the simplest and most effective way to update a room is to change out the cushions, and this year is no different. I happened upon this amazing butter yellow textured cotton on sale and snapped it up. I was able to make cushion covers for some beige silk cushions, the change to the room was immediate; and while the cushions are lovely, they needed some contrast to really pop in the room.
My mind went back to those Double Huck Lace Runners and I figured that I could cover the small cushions that came with the couch, you know those meagre cushions that the manufacturer throws in with your purchase. My first job was to unpick the hems of the runners.
I sewed three sides of the runner and gave the envelopes a rough fit, it was almost as if it was meant to be and it was a perfect fit. It was at this point that I decided I wouldn’t bother with a zipper like in the larger cushions but sew the cushions into the envelope.
To make sure I was working with the straightest edge possible I pulled a weft thread and gave the hemline a trim. Then folded the edge to the inside and pinned securely.
Now I was ready to sit in the sun and sew that seam closed. This way I could get a really good fit to the cushion.
The 18”x18” cushion really works well with the bigger butter yellow cushions and I think the double diamond motif is offset beautifully by the darker cushion inside.
They look smashing on the teal armchairs too!
The garden shot today is of the Japanese style tree supports that we made. I'm a huge fan of Japanese Maples and have six different varieties in the garden. Generally they are low to the ground and these nifty creations help prop them up without allowing the tree to absorb them into their branches. Yup, had that happen on one of them and now I have metal hooks dangling like earrings on the poor branch!
Monday, January 25, 2021
I’m reweaving the white linen table runners; I made a threading error on the first batch from the end of last year (Blog post 1 and Blog post 2). I love pattern and the classic blue and white colour combination so much that I felt compelled to make these table runner right.
I put on enough warp for two runners so hopefully I’ll finish weaving the other table runner next week, but the spring cleaning list beckons. We like to get it all done before March when the garden sends out it's siren call.
Final garden shot is of the daffodils almost ready for Spring. I took on that photo on Thursday, as I’m writing this it is snowing and the forecast is for 5 -15 cms of snow! It has gone from warm sunny weather to winter in just a couple of days.
Monday, January 11, 2021
I know, it’s been forever; that would be November 23, to be exact; since I started my two Parallel Threaded Scarf . After really working at the second scarf for the past two days, I have just cut them off the loom. Like many of you out there, I have been stalled in the doldrums, so nothing in my world is moving at any kind of speed.
The first scarf I wove on the orange and green warp was crossed with Blue/Purple Tencel. This produced a scarf where both sides have very similar depth of colour. The pattern is reversed but since the colour saturation was very similar, the differences are quite subtle. The iridescence is really lovely with the fourth colour wandering into the crimson/purple range, although the grey day and my camera really didn’t capture it well. And of course it needs to be washed to snug up all the threads and allow the colour play to develop.
This photo features the bluer side of the scarf and it has all the potential to be a stunner. Not sure how I’m going to treat the fringe at this point though. I have several options (a) just twist two green and two orange threads together (b) isolate the colours and let them go (c) add weft coloured threads to each bout.
This second scarf is by far my favourite. I worked on the treadling and took out a lot of the pattern echoing and reduced the pattern to these lovely small flower shapes. I changed the weft to Iris Tencel and the greater contrast really made the scarf pop.
The iridescence is wonderful and there is more of a rosy/purple shine coming through. I’m sure once it is washed and the drape show, it’ll be a real looker!
I did learn a lot, even though I moved like a snail....I learned that using split complementary colours to create iridescence works and you CAN move the placements around. The accepted norm is to use colours next to each other on the colour wheel as the warp, then use the colour opposite on the colour wheel as the weft. I split this up and it still worked just fine.
I will post a couple of photos later after I've done the fringes and when the light is better and hopefully the beauty shots will shine!