Tuesday, June 9, 2015

What's looming

So here's what's on my looms these days.  And on the drawing board. . . 

I'm shifting for now from dishtowels back to garments.  I'm weaving two infinity wraps on a 5/2 white bamboo warp.  The idea is that these can take you from overly air-conditioned rooms into cool fall days.  Based on what I'm seeing in stores and magazines, indigo is still really hot, and I love it, so they will both be in that colorway.  The first is being woven in a large diamond twill, with navy 8/2 Tencel weft. 

I'm thinking the second wrap will involve some warp painting in shades of indigo and gray along one edge.  Stay tuned for more on that. 

As far as tapestry goes, I'm working on getting ready to weave my biggest one yet.  Since last fall I've had a Varpapuu loom sitting in my family room, silently saying, When are you going to warp me up?  (That hideous pink yarn that came with the loom is going to go away!)

I've decided to set aside for awhile the design for the next piece in my series about the Virgin Mary, a complex triple portrait.  It's coming along, but it's pretty ambitious.  For this first large piece on a new-to-me loom I've decided to scale up a small piece I did years ago that I still really like.  It's loosely inspired by the layout of medieval illuminated manuscripts.  The woven piece below measures about 4" by 6", and it's mounted on a light-colored fabric stretched on stretcher bars.

It's been interesting scaling this up--turns out it's not a simple matter of just multiplying the dimensions of the small piece by, say, a factor of 4 or 6.  I found I needed to change the design, adding wider borders to the woven image in order to create the same feeling as the fabric "mat" in the mount above.  The larger piece will be about 24" by 36".  For the first time I need to calculate whether I'll have enough seine twine for warp, and enough of each of the weft yarns I want to use.  I'm thinking I'll use several different reds, for example, and maybe even several different whites and beiges, to make for interesting variations in color and texture.  I need to do some sampling.

"The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne." (Chaucer)

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