Almost 2 years ago I wove and dyed 3 some yards of Handwoven Shibori fabric. The dyed fabric reminded me of the tranquil waters in the Bahamas. I wanted to make something to wear, but what? In my mind I envisioned a dress, but there wasn’t enough fabric. The Shibori fabric would need to be the focal point in the dress. So I wove another 3 yards of solid color fabric in a simple 8 harness twill, using a cotton/silk blend. The Shibori fabric is made from 8/2 Tencel. These two fabrics were used to sew the dress using Simplicity 1586 pattern. I modeled the dress in the Contemporary Handweavers of Texas 2015 conference fashion show this past weekend. The back of the dress also has the center panel of handwoven Shibori fabric with side panels in the twill fabric. It only took 2 years but I accomplished my goal. The challenge now is to find a use for the remaining fabric. What do you envision creating?
This sample of crimp weave was woven on warp left after weaving a scarf. It’s narrow since the original scarf was only 7 inches wide. The warp is a 10/2 Tencel and weft a polyester sewing thread. This gives a lovely hand. Note to self when setting up to weave future scarf warp width should be at least 15 inches in reed.
The towels which were on the loom are off and need to be hemmed. This was the warp I showed in a previous post “Spring Has Sprung“. I’ll post the variety of designs I wove when the handwork is finished. My time lately has been spent sewing handwoven fabric into a garment for the upcoming Contemporary Handweavers of Texas conference in June. With a sigh of relief it will go to the post office tomorrow. There will be pictures to share after the conference. So what to put on the loom next?
We had a little too much rain a week ago. The lake flooded in the park where I walk. Later that day the water had receded and the grounds cleaned up. Other areas near continue to have flooding a week later. More rain is in the forecast here. With any luck it will come in light sprinkles. Today was a beautiful sunny day, letting us relax with a swim in the pool.
In the last Post I promised you a picture of the front side of the scarf once it came off the loom. The scarf does not have a nice drape. It is heavy or stiff so it will most likely be cut up to create smaller objects. Oh why didn’t I sample? I’m using a 16/2 bamboo instead of the 10/2 bamboo used in the first piece for the next scarf. The fabric is now lighter and should give a nicer drape. Yes there is a color difference. Above a Teal yarn in tabby. Below the second scarf on the loom using a navy tabby yarn.
Tabby: Navy 16/2 Bamboo
The plants are beginning to think Spring has arrived in Houston. Hopefully they will look this nice after the rain stops.
Chinese fringe flower
When looking through sample books from Cross Country Weavers, I found myself having treadle envy. I’m sure your asking yourself what could she possibly be talking about. My loom has 8 harnesses and 10 treadles. The sample that I found myself interested in weaving needed 7 harnesses ( no problem) . Alas, it used 11 treadles. A couple of years earlier I had designed a piece needing more treadles than I possessed. Here Tim’s Treadle Reducer program comes to the rescue. You enter in the shafts, and treadles in the original design, and the number of shafts and treadles on your loom.
Click on ” Make a grid” , to go to next step below: Entry
Treadle Reducer Entry Treadle Reducer results
In reducing the number of treadles needed to weave the design, treadling becomes more involved. At times you need to depress two treadles at the same time. A small price to pay to weave more complex designs.
This program has allowed me to begin weaving a scarf inspired by a sample by Sally Orgren in Cross Country Weavers, March 2008, using a Bateman Blend pattern. The photo at the top, shows what will become the backside of my scarf. So follow the blog to see the finished scarf in a future post.
Crimp weave sample
In January I attended Dianne Totten‘s Crimp Weave Workshop put on by the Contemporary Handweaver’s of Houston Guild.
My loom was setup to do weft Shibori which meant I needed to use a polyester or Orlon yarn in the weft to create crimp cloth. These two types of yarn are heat sensitive. The warp could be any fiber I wanted to use. I used a teal 10/2 bamboo with a few stripes of silver 8/2 Tencel. The threading was an advancing twill. As a workshop the point is to try to weave as many samples as possible. After the samples are woven and taken off the loom,the pattern threads are pulled tightly up. Next the piece is steamed, and pattern threads are removed. The result is crimp cloth, fabric with permanent texture.
Sample on loom.
Black threads are pattern pull threads.
Samples above were made during workshop. Different yarn types, sizes and combinations of yarns were used in weft to create the samples. The possibilities are endless. Now what weave structure to try next?
If your tired of shawls falling off your shoulders an alternative is to make a Möbius Shawl. The trick is to twist the shawl once than stitch one end to the side of the other end. This really is just a fancy poncho, with softer draping of fabric in the front. The technique works well for lighter weight shawls also.
Mobius Shawl Front
Mobius Shawl Back
These and many of my other weavings will be available at the Contemporary Handweavers of Houston Sale. The sale is in a new location this year. I’ll be working several of the days so drop by I’d love to see you.
Rep Weave- Warped faced
My warp from the Rosalie Neilson‘s Rep Weave workshop put on by the Contemporary Handweavers of Houston guild, has been woven and is off the loom. It’s been a few years since I’ve woven Rep.
The workshop, “It’s in the Warp: Color& Design in Rep”, is worth taking. Rosalie explained in a precise manner how this weave structure works. The 4 yd warp let one explore the design possibilities of this weave structure. Except for the trials caused by the sticking harnesses on my 8 shaft Baby Mac loom this was a great workshop that I would highly recommend. Below are the pieces woven as I explored the possibilities of weaving rep.
You can see other workshop participants rep weaving by clicking on this link: http://weavehouston.org/reppin-with-rosalie/. The 15 weavers could choose from different pattern threadings so there is a variety of Rep patterns produced. .
Coral towel variations
It’s fun to vary the weft yarn color when weaving multiple items on a long warp. By changing things up it helps when boredom sets in. The 5 1/2 yd warp gave me 5 towels. Three like the first towel in the picture and one of each of the others. This is an eight harness turned twill using cottolin yarns. I love the hand that cottolin gives a towel. Which color towel is your favorite?
Began weaving another color way using the same turned twill setup for the previous coral towels. These are probably my favorite colors to weave with. I just love a bright blue (royal blue). These will be made with 22/2 cottolin, from my stash. Alas, there is very little of the purple and turquoise remaining after warping.
I Belong, 2014
Mixed media, structural weaving
Attended “Craft Texas 2014” at the Houston Center For Contemporary Craft, on Saturday. This piece saddened but delighted me that an artistic use was found for some thing I use regularly to create art. The artist used two shafts or harnesses from a loom and numerous heddles which would normally hold the individual warp ends on a shaft to create this work of art.
It’s getting harder and harder to walk at night with the sun beginning to set at 7:15pm central time here in Texas. I’ll have to come up with a different time / place to walk soon.
Posted in 8 harness weave, cottolin, Handwoven towels, Travels, Twill Weave, Uncategorized
Tagged Craft Texas 2014, Fiberart, Hand weaving, handweaving, Handwoven Towels, Houston Contemporary Craft Museum, weaving