The Color Purple…..

my version! Purple–combines the calmness of blue and the energy of red. The words royalty, luxury and power come to mind. The color purple rarely occurs in nature which may account for it being one of the most expensive dyes to create, thus the association with royalty.

My process usually starts with gathering yarns and selecting colors.  Not every yarn is suitable for warp or even for weaving.  I was a knitter before I took up weaving, so I have lots of knitting yarns that I love to mix with yarns made specifically for weaving.  Ironically, I thought weaving would use up some of the knitting yarn….HA!!!  Anyone with an addiction (yes, it is a real thing) to yarn, fabric, beads, trim, etc., knows they will never live long enough to use up everything in their stash of materials.  Yes, I was a dreamer in that respect, and my children will have to forgive me when it comes time to downsize or hold that inevitable estate sale.

This shawl is gloriously purple and a bit larger than I usually make a shawl.  After weaving, it is wet finished, air dried and the ends are hand twisted into fringe and trimmed.  I love the way the different yarns blend together…..creating a whole piece of weaving that is greater than the simple sum of its parts!  This one is “in the books” and ready to be posted for sale on Etsy.

 

One Warp, Two Looks……

WOW!!  I don’t think I could come up with two more different looks from one warp!  Yes, the warp was designed to make two scarves, but I couldn’t resist changing things around and adding my own spin on things.

I wanted to get as much fabric as possible from this painted warp, so I added the black stripes to make it wider.  I think adding black makes something go with everything, so you will often see a touch of black in my weaving.

Weaving is a funny business…..there are plenty of opportunities to make “creative” changes.  Unexpected things happen and sometimes plans change.  I didn’t calculate the length of the black warp I was adding to this piece correctly, so the piece on the left of the photos became a Mobius cowl with long twisted fringe.  The piece on the right is a shawl.  I like that they turned out to be very different.  It’s sort of like your children…..they are totally different people and probably very different from what you expected!!  These two woven “children” turned out unexpectedly interesting and beautiful.

When Things Get Tough…

tie a knot and hang on!  Warping the loom is not my favorite thing to do, however it is absolutely necessary if you want to weave something.  Warping a loom consists of steps like “slaying the reed” and “threading the heedles.”  It sounds like a foreign language!  The warp  is the lengthwise yarns on the loom and the weft is drawn through, over and under the warp to create fabric.  Warping a loom takes some time and patience and it and has to be done correctly before you can weave.  Sometimes a new warp can be tied onto the loom using the previous warp.  It’s still a tedious process.  Like many things in life, when done correctly, warping the loom and weaving the fabric produce order out of apparent chaos.

I created the painted warp in these photos at the Artesian Gallery in Sulphur, Oklahoma about a year ago.  Part of the delay to weave this was just being busy, but part of it was savoring the anticipation of creating something from this beautiful warp.  I dyed or “painted” enough warp to weave two scarves.  It was amazing to see how different each warp looked and wove.  The colors changed in beautiful gradients as they blended.  I love the way the colors bleed into each other.  Putting this warp on the loom and weaving it make me hope there are more painted warps in my future.

You can see by comparing this photo with the previous one of the work on the loom, that the color schemes change mid-warp.  In other words, there are two completely different projects in this warp.  One is blue, reds and greens; while the second one is blue, red and purple.

Painted warp-07

After warping the loom, the weaving has begun!  I’ve added some solid black stripes to add width to the finished fabric.  Other weavers at the Mahota Studios, where I weave, tease me about always adding “a touch” of black to everything I make…..it’s mostly true!  I can’t wait to get this fabric off the loom and do the finishing.  There is still lots left to do before this will be two garments, but now that I’ve anticipated and savored, the process has begun.  Hopefully the finished products will be worthy of the wait!

 

Red is the Color of…….

……my work this week!  It is also the color of passion, love, adventure.  It represents primal forces and energy.  Historically, it was almost as rare and expensive as purple, which may explain it’s popularity.  Red is the most popular color used on flags in the world.  In some cultures, red is the color of good luck.

I am working on two different and red projects; one woven and one from felted wool sweaters.  The woven project is a red shawl with hand twisted fringe.  I warped the loom and have finished weaving it.  Now it has been wet finished and is waiting to have the fringe completed.  The felted wool project is just beginning.  I’ve cut five different shades of red sweaters into the pieces for the project.  March Madness was great for this as I could cut and watch basketball!  I managed to get quite a bit of useable material from the sweaters and will start on the layout of the pieces today.  This creation is destined to be a wedding gift for the daughter of a very special friend.

Working in red reminds me to be passionate about the people and things I love.  Sometimes it’s frightening to let your feelings show or to invite people to share what you are passionate about.  I hope you will enjoy seeing the fiber art I create and you will find your own passion!

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