Monday, February 22, 2021

Sunshine and Spring Table Runners

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.

I decided to do some more table runners; that Etsy shop section is still low on content.  The fresh colours of the warp are such a pleasure to work with on the cloudy late winter days.  

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

The Last of the White Linen Table Runners

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!)

Just like the first runner from this warp I finished weaving the runner just as the pirn ran out of thread.  Totally winning the weaving game!

I washed the runners and was able to air dry the runners outside last week.  It has been a warm and mild winter this year but that changed this week as we have had an Artic outflow over the island so we have been 5 to 10 degrees colder than normal for this time of year.

One of the benefits of the cold Artic air is that it tends to be sunny so I was able to get some product photos done of the table runners for the Etsy shop, WovenBeauty.  They will be up for sale sometime next week.  

The last three days we have been walloped by a large snow storm, so far we have about 2 feet of snow.  The snow is heavy and sticky so it perfectly outlines the branches of the trees and shrubs, so pretty!

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

Re-purposing A Runner

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!