Friday, 19 October 2018

Witney and the Witney Blanket - the Canadian connection

In September I visited Oxfordshire and we had a day out in Witney.  I had forgotten that there is a weaving connection. I was delighted to find a couple of museums and plenty of people who were willing to spend time discussing the weaving heritage of the area.

Here is a useful web site   http://www.witneyblanketstory.org.uk/wbp.asp

It is full of information and links to other sites.



Witney and District Museum

The first place we visited was the Witney and District Musem. This delightful locally run museum was crammed with memorabilia from the town. The local blanket industry was a revelation to me as I was unaware of how extensive it had been. I can remember Witney blankets from my youth. Before the days of duvets, sheets and blankets made for the time consuming task of bed making.  Blankets were so heavy!






Here is one of the museum displays.





The curator kindly took out the advertising plaque from the display case so that I could see it more clearly.  It shows a North American trapper wearing a capote coat made from a Witney blanket.

The item that particularly intrigued me was the patterned belt.


close up of the patterned belt




































My interest in patterned belts was aroused.  I had not seen this type of belt before.  If anyone has more information about it I would love to find out more.




blanket showing the four lines


This close up shows a Witney blanket.  The lines are called 'points'. The number of lines on the blanket was used as an exchange rate for those people trading skins.  For example, a blanket with four points would have been worth the same as four beaver skins.
Later on the number of points was used to show the size or weight of the blanket.
The word 'point' may have been derived from the French word empointer which means to stitch or to embroider. The points are darned into the blanket near to one end.

The usual bands of colours were black, yellow, red and green and were known as the headings. The surface of the blanket was raised so that it became thicker and more about to trap air.

It was difficult to get away from this delightful museum. Run by volunteers, it is a tribute to the interest felt by local people in their heritage.

The Blanket Hall

The High Street has many fascinating buildings if you are interested in architecture. The Blanket Hall is a must-see. It also has a great tea room. For more pictures and information go to
Facebook page:   @theblankethall


The Blanket hall on the High Street, Witney


At the start of the 18th century, the Company of Witney Blanket Weavers set it up as their meeting place. All of the weavers sent blankets to the Hudson Bay Company. For over 100 years point blankets were sent to North America.



This little booklet told the story of the Witney Point Blanket




This is a view of the upstairs landing.  Note the blanket coat.  The temptation was too great.

I could not resist trying it on.  I was very surprised at the weight of the material.  It would have been very warm in inhospitable environments.


The Great Room where the company of weavers used to meet was lovely and had a number of items laid out on the table.



close up of the table display


sample book



The sample book was intriguing but no touching.  My fingers itched to turn the pages!

The Cotswolds Woollen Weavers.


Outside of Witney there is a small village, Filkins, which houses the Cotswolds Woollen Weavers. This is a commercial outlet but well worth the visit. It has a shop, coffee shop (very important!) a museum and a design studio.
the weaving store room 
This astonishing jumble of equipment is a relic of the thriving weaving industry.  It was an education rummaging through the items piled up on tables, the floor and in boxes. 



Upstairs the weaving record books are on display. Shelves and shelves of them! I wished I could have opened some of them and examined the samples from the old weaving industry.  One of the books was open. 


Here is one page of the open book. 

I can recommend Witney as a place to visit if you are interested in the history of weaving. 

Susan J Foulkes

October 2018

Update

In the Guardian Newspaper recently (20th September 2018) there was a display of photographs by Edward S Curtis which were due to be auctioned in New York in October. One picture was a Piegan lodge interior taken in 191. It is picture number 9 out of the 20 on the Guardian page.  The three  Native Americans are seated on the ground and there appears to be a pile of blankets on the floor as well. I could make out one stripe so they could be Witney blankets.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/gallery/2018/sep/20/the-north-american-indian-edward-s-curtis-in-pictures#img-9

Monday, 1 October 2018

Weaving bands with 7 pattern threads


With the 9 pattern slot heddle you can also weave patterns with 5 and 7 pattern threads.


Here is a sample I wove showing three patterns. The first has 9 pattern threads. I removed two pattern threads and some border threads for the next pattern for 7 pattern threads. The final example has just 5 pattern threads.

5, 7 and 9 thread patterns on one warp



Threading chart for 7 pattern threads. 

Here is the threading chart for 7 pattern threads when using a 9 pattern slot heddle.


 Threading chart for 7 pattern threads when using a 9 pattern slot heddle

Note that there are two empty slots and holes on each side marked with X.
7 pattern thread chart

Here is the pattern chart for a 7 pattern design of noughts and crosses.

Remember that only the coloured pattern threads appear on the chart. These are the threads that will be picked up to appear on the surface of the band.







close up of 5 and 7 pattern thread bands on one warp
I made many bookmarks to send to booksellers to accompany my book.

Bookmark with 7 pattern threads. 


Here is the pattern for the bookmark with 7 pattern threads. This pattern is not in my book.




 There are 48 picks in the pattern repeat.




































Some 7 pattern thread bookmarks.
Why not try this pattern for yourself? Varying the colours of the pattern threads and the border can dramatically alter the look of the band.


Using a 13 pattern slot heddle.

here is the threading chart for a 13 pattern slot heddle for a band with only 7 pattern threads. All the grey slots and holes are empty. There are only 2 border threads on each side of the pattern threads. 

using a 13 pattern slot heddle for 7 pattern threads. 


Using a Sunna double slotted heddle with 7 pattern threads.


The double slotted heddle is available in a smaller size of  7 shorter slots for patterns threads.  This heddle can be used with a back strap, in a box loom or on a larger inkle loom.


The Sunna heddle with 7 pattern slots set up to weave with a backstrap.



Here is a portion of the graphic design which I saw on a  Weave Fair poster.



This pattern can be looked at in two ways; one with a pink pattern and one with a black pattern.





On the left is the pattern draft for 7 pink pattern threads. The pattern threads are twice as thick as the background and weft threads.The weft thread is black and shows at the pink selvedge as a black dot.  There are 36 picks for the pattern repeat.

The pink pattern is on a black background.



On the right is the pattern draft  for 7 black pattern threads.  The pattern threads are twice as thick as the background and weft thread. The weft is pink and shows at the black selvedge as a pink dot.

The black pattern is on a pink background.





Can you see how the two patterns are related?



It is easier to see when you examine the woven bands.



Two faces of the pink pattern.


Two faces of the black pattern.

As you can see, the two patterns are the same.  It depends upon which design is woven on the top.

Here is the threading diagram for the 7 pattern slot Sunna double slotted heddle.

Threading for the 7 Sunna double slotted heddle.

The 7 pattern threads are numbered and are indicated in red.  They should be at least twice as thick as the background and border threads.  You can use as many border threads as there are slots and holes in the heddle.

If you wish to use a standard heddle or an inkle loom, here is the threading.

Threading for a standard heddle or an inkle loom.
For an inkle loom, the heddled threads are indicated by the hole and the unheddled threads by the slot. Note that the centre pattern thread is always threaded through the centre hole in the heddle. When you raise the heddle, the centre pattern thread 4 (and pattern threads 2 and 6) will appear on the surface.  When using the pattern draft, you may have to bring up a pattern thread from the bottom layer or push down a pattern thread from the top layer to weave the pattern.  See my YouTube video: Weaving narrow warp faced bands.

Happy weaving.






My book has 45 pattern charts for 7 thread patterns. Plenty to choose from and you now have an additional pattern.




'More than 140 patterns are included, along with principles for planning your own unique designs for contemporary uses such as straps, belts, bracelets, and even handfasting bands. The breathtaking range of colorful bands woven in Sweden, Finland, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Norway are explored and offer additional inspiration.'



You can order this book on Amazon and from the Book Depository UK.

In the USA, it is available from The Woolery who are based in Frankfort, Kentucky: https://woolery.com/weaving-patterned-bands.html


Susan J Foulkes October 2018

18th October 2018

I was invited to write a blog post for the Woolery in the USA.  Here is the link

https://thewooleryguy.wordpress.com/2018/10/17/guest-post-weaving-patterned-bands-with-susan-j-foulkes/



Monday, 3 September 2018

Weaving patterned bands with 5 pattern threads

My latest book has been published by Schiffer. In the UK it will become available at the end of the month.



More than 140 patterns are included, along with principles for planning your own unique designs for contemporary uses such as straps, belts, bracelets, and even handfasting bands. The breathtaking range of colorful bands woven in Sweden, Finland, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Norway are explored and offer additional inspiration.'


You can order this book through the Handweavers Studio, London, on Amazon and from the Book Depository UK.

In the USA, it is available from The Woolery who are based in Frankfort, Kentucky: https://woolery.com/weaving-patterned-bands.html


I made two YouTube videos to accompany the book.

1. Weaving bands with 5 pattern threads:  https://youtu.be/9OUkBSN8LtI

2. Weaving a patterned band on a floor inkle loom:  https://youtu.be/k9Jhd80mBsQ

Weaving Patterned Bands


In this post I will discuss starting to weave with 5 pattern threads. This is an excellent way to start weaving if you have never tried before and a good introduction to this fascinating craft for young people. My book has 54 pattern charts for 5 pattern threads.

This post will show the threading for using a 9 pattern slot heddle, a 5 pattern slot heddle and an inkle loom (or standard heddle). For those of you with a 13 patten slot heddle, the threading will also be given. You will need to navigate the blog to find the appropriate section.

All the patterns can be woven using either a 9 pattern slot heddle, a standard heddle or an inkle loom.
There will be two further posts, one about weaving with 7 pattern threads next month and another about weaving with 9 pattern threads in November.

Weaving bands with 5 pattern threads. 

Threading the 9 pattern slot heddle. 

I made a YouTube video showing how to make the warp and thread a 9 pattern slot Sunna heddle.

You can also make the warp on a warping frame as shown in a previous blog. https://durhamweaver64.blogspot.com/2018/07/making-warp-and-threading-9-pattern.html

YouTube video: https://youtu.be/iE-my-qxFwA

NOTE: This 9 pattern slot heddle can be used to weave bands with 5, 7, and 9 pattern threads.

Using a 9 pattern slot heddle for bands with 5 pattern threads.

This blog will look at five pattern threads. Look at the threading chart. Note the empty slots on either side.

The threading chart

Here is the threading chart for using the 9 pattern slot heddle for 5 pattern threads. Note that there will be a total of four empty slots and holes on each side indicate by X.

For this band you can have a maximum of 14 border threads on each side. Look at the threading for the border threads. The sequence from the centre is long slot then hole and finishes with a warp thread through a hole. It is important to keep this sequence. Therefore there is an empty hole and an empty long slot as well as two empty pattern slots on each side.

You can see the empty slots and holes for the 9 pattern slot heddle.

Five pattern threads on a 9 pattern thread heddle. 

The Pattern Chart: noughts and crosses







This pattern chart is for 5 pattern threads. Only the pattern threads are shown on the chart.They are coloured purple and pale blue.  I think that it is helpful for beginners to have the centre pattern thread a different colour.

Here is the simple OXOX pattern which is a common pattern around the Baltic.

When weaving with only five pattern threads, you will need to pay particular attention to band width. Pull the weft to keep the band width even.

The heddle is lifted for the even numbered picks and lowered for the odd numbered picks. So when you start you will lift the heddle for pick A

Ignore the dots on the chart at this stage. They are a very useful guide when copying pattern charts and are particularly useful for weavers using an inkle loom.



Watch my YouTube video. 

It will be helpful at this stage to watch my video: Weaving bands with 5 pattern threads. I am using a 5 pattern slot heddle but the pick up is the same for using 5 pattern threads on a 9 pattern slot heddle. 

Here is the link: Weaving bands with 5 pattern threads

https://youtu.be/9OUkBSN8LtI


Setting up to weave. 


For this stage you will be inserting two sticks into two sheds to provide a firm straight base to start the weaving. 

Stage 1.

You need to attach the non-weaving end of the warp to a belt around your waist. This can be something as simple as a cord or a wider belt.
Tie the loose ends of the warp around the cord ensuring that the heddle is lying straight and not tilted.

Stage 2.

Deepening upon the colours of the background threads, wind some thread of the same colour onto the shuttle.
You will need two smooth sticks or coffee stirrers to start the woven band.
Look at the pattern chart.  Lift the heddle in your right hand and use the shuttle in your left hand. All the pattern threads will be in a straight line in the centre of the two layers of background threads.
For the first pick A you can see that there are three coloured squares.  Use the end of the shuttle to pick the first then the centre and then the first pattern thread. Do not take the shuttle through but turn it onto its side to hold the shed open. Now insert one of the sticks.

Stage 3

Now look at pick B. Lower the heddle with your left hand. take the shuttlein your right hand and pick up two pattern threads, 2 and 4. Turn the shuttle onto its side to hold the shed open then insert the second stick.
You have now provided a firm base on which to start weaving.


Starting the band.


You are now ready to use the weft.

1.Start again at pick A with the shuttle in your left hand.  Raise the heddle with your right hand and pick up the three pattern threads as indicated by the coloured squares on the pattern chart. Take the shuttle through leaving a small tail of weft yarn on the left side.

2. Look at pick B. There are two coloured squares on the chart. Lower the heddle with your left and and use the tip of the shuttle to pick up pattern threads 2 and 4. Take the shuttle through and bring it to the fell on the band. You can check that you have picked up the correct pattern threads. Now turn the shuttle onto its edge and take the small tail of weft yarn through from the left side to the right. Take the shuttle through to the left.
You have now secured the weft at the beginning of the band so that it will not unravel.

3. Look at pick C. It is the same as pick A. Raise the heddle. Pick up the pattern threads as indicated by the coloured squares. Take the shuttle to the fell on the band to beat in the weft and also to check that you have picked up the correct pattern threads.  Take the shuttle through to the right hand side and pull the weft taut.

4. Look at pick D. It is the same as pick C. Lower the heddle. Pick up the pattern threads as indicated by the coloured squares. Take the shuttle to the fell on the band to beat in the weft and also to check that you have picked up the correct pattern threads.  Take the shuttle through to the left and pull the weft taut.

Weaving.


You are now ready to start the pattern. The pattern for this band is 18 picks.  Raise the heddle in your right hand. Take the shuttle in your left hand.

Pick 1
Start with pick 1 and carefully choose the correct pattern thread. For pick 1 only one square is coloured in. It is the centre pattern thread of the five. Insert the shuttle and pick up the centre pattern thread. Beat by taking the shuttle down to the fell of the band. You can now check that you have picked up the correct pattern thread.
Take the shuttle and weft through to the right leaving a tail of yarn on the left.

Pick 2
Lower the heddle with your left hand. Look at the pattern chart.  There are three pattern thread indicated. Pickup the centre three pattern threads with the point of the shuttle. Take the shuttle to the fell of the band and beat.  You can check that you have picked up the correct pattern threads. Now turn the shuttle on edge and feed the loose end of the weft thread into the shed so that it comes out on the right. Now take the shuttle through to the left. There are two weft threads in the same shed. This helps to prevent the weaving from unravelling when you have finished the band. Pull the weft on the shuttle to the left and the loose thread of weft to the right to make the band width narrow. The warp threads should cover the weft and the pattern threads should be touching.

Pick 3
Look at the pattern chart. There are five pattern threads showing on the surface.  This pick is easy. Raise the heddle with your right hand. Insert the shuttle under all the pattern threads. This brings them all to the surface. Take the shuttle to the fell on the band and beat. You should see all five pattern threads.


Here are two simple bands with these two motifs. The top band is in cotton and the bottom band is woven in wool.


Colour and material can make a difference. The top band is in pearl cotton and the bottom band is in wool.


Using a 13 pattern slot heddle. 


For those of you with a 13 pattern slot heddle, here is the threading diagram. All the grey squares represent holes or slots which will be empty.  Only two border threads are shown adjacent to the pattern threads.

The border threads need to follow the correct threading order for a plain weave structure.

With the 9 pattern slot heddle you can see that there is one border thread in a long slot after the pattern area then a slot and hole which are empty.  Then another border thread threaded through a hole then another empty slot and hole. The rest of the border area can be threaded normally.

With the 13 pattern slot heddle the plain weave threading for the border would contain more empty slots and holes making it difficult for a beginner to get the proper tension and width for the woven band.  It can be done but it requires patience and skill. I would recommend just using two border threads until you feel confident.

Here is the complete threading for the 13 pattern slot heddle. X denotes an empty hole or slot.
You can use up to 18 border threads on each side.



Threading chart for a 13 pattern slot heddle using only 5 pattern threads and 18 border threads on each side. 


Happy Weaving!

Using a standard heddle or an inkle loom.

Patterns can also be woven using a standard heddle or on an inkle loom.


Threading for standard heddle.

For an inkle loom, the heddled threads are indicated by the hole and the unheddled threads by the slot. Note that the centre pattern thread is always threaded through the centre hole in the heddle. The pattern threads are twice as thick as the background and border threads. For this threading there are four border threads on each side. The five pattern threads are shown in red.

When you raise the heddle, the centre pattern thread numbered 3 (and pattern threads 1 and 5) will appear on the surface. If you look carefully at the pattern draft you will see that some squares have small dots.  This indicates the pattern threads that will appear on the surface when you raise or lower the heddle. When using the pattern draft, you may have to bring up a pattern thread from the bottom layer or push down a pattern thread from the top layer to weave the pattern.

YouTube Videos

 See my YouTube video: Weaving narrow warp faced bands.

Weaving a patterned band on a floor inkle loom:  https://youtu.be/k9Jhd80mBsQ


Using a Sunna double slotted heddle with 5 pattern threads.

Here is a video from Stoorstalka using their band weaving kit for 5 pattern threads.


Weaving hearts with STOORSTÅLKA Band weaving kit Sunna 5

https://youtu.be/d2A1K8oEWTU



A close up of the Sunna double slotted heddle with 5 pattern slots.






This heddle can be used with a back strap, in a box loom or on a larger inkle loom.















Threading the Sunna 5 heddle.


Here is the threading for the Sunna heddle with 5 pattern slots. The 5 pattern threads are numbered and are indicated in red. They should be at least twice as thick as the background and border threads. You can use as many border threads as there are slots and holes in the heddle. I have only indicated four border threads on each side on this diagram. The Sunna 5 heddle has room for 12 border threads on each side.

Threading for Sunna 5 double slotted heddle

To help beginners learn to weave, there is a  useful videos from Stoorstalka. 

Weaving Zigzag pattern with Stoorstalka band weaving kit Sunna 5.

Click here to view ithttps://youtu.be/1yY2Vm_xBPI


Pattern chart.

Weaving with the Sunna 5 heddle.

Pattern chart for arrows and a cross.

Here is a pattern for you to try with the Sunna 5 heddle. The five white pattern threads (shown as green on the weave draft) are threaded through the 5 shorter slots on the heddle. The pattern threads are twice as thick as the background and border threads. The pattern draft only shows the pattern threads which should appear on the surface of the band.

Here is the pattern chart for the simple pattern in white on a green background.

There are 40 picks for the pattern repeat but it is very easy to learn. Remember that on the odd numbered picks the heddle should be raised and the even numbered picks the heddle should be lowered.

The white pattern threads are twice the thickness of green background threads.  The weft is green.




















Top side of woven band

Reverse side of woven band

Both sides of the band have lovely patterns.


Stockists.


The Sunna heddles and kit can be brought direct from Stoorstålka.

Stoorstålka sell rigid heddles and shuttles for weaving narrow bands. They ship items worldwide. They supply double slotted heddles (the Sunna heddles) and double holed heddles (the Beavi heddle) as well as standard heddles with long slots and holes. Their web site is https://shop.stoorstalka.com/en/start.html

If you are in the USA, Canada, Australia or Japan,  Stoorstålka have a dedicated web site at

For Norway go to  https://no.stoorstalka.com/nb/


UK: London  

Here is a new outlet for the Sunna heddle including the Sunna 5 kit. They sell rigid heddles, inkle looms and yarn in very useful small amounts.Their shop is an Aladdin's cave.  Well worth browsing the online shop or better still visit their beautiful shop in London.  https://www.handweavers.co.uk/

Handweavers Studio London.



The Sunna 5 Kit:  everything you need to start to learn this wonderful craft.


  Happy weaving

Next month I will take you through weaving with 7 pattern threads.



My latest book has been published this month by Schiffer and is available from Handweavers Studio, and Amazon.



'Narrow bands woven in colorful patterns are a centuries-old part of Baltic craft tradition. The double slotted heddle makes patterned band weaving quicker to learn and easier to do, and this is the first book that offers beginners instructions for using it. The craft doesn't involve bulky equipment―all you need can be stored in a shoe box! Learn how to weave these beautiful bands step by step, from the simple 5 pattern threads to the more complex 7 and 9 patterns. Color photographs illustrate the instructions for learning to weave.

More than 140 patterns are included, along with principles for planning your own unique designs for contemporary uses such as straps, belts, bracelets, and even handfasting bands. The breathtaking range of colorful bands woven in Sweden, Finland, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Norway are explored and offer additional inspiration.'

You can order this book through the Handweavers Studio, on Amazon and the Book Depository UK.

In the USA, it is available from The Woolery who are based in Frankfort, Kentucky: https://woolery.com/weaving-patterned-bands.html


Susan J Foulkes September 2018


Wednesday, 1 August 2018

National Exhibition 2018 Textile Creations 15th - 29th July Glasgow





This exhibition is a gem.  Such wonderfully creative and inspiring pieces of work.  It is a pleasure to wander around seeing and with the sample pieces, feeling the textiles on display.


General view of the exhibition space


Sweaters, cardigans, tapestries, wall hangings - such a variety of exhibits.

I took many photographs.  If your work is displayed here and you are unhappy about it being made public, let me know and I will remove the picture. There is a lovely catalogue illustrating all the work which I am sure will be available to purchase after the exhibition for those who were unable to attend.

A particular delight is the open exhibition of non-juried work.  Anyone who submits a piece of work has it displayed here. It was to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

A small section of the non-juried work. 



A Mackintosh rose

The various interpretations of the theme are a delight.  I particularly appreciated that all the script describing the various items used the Mackintosh font. This aspect of the exhibition must have taken a long time to put together but it is a highlight.

One unusual piece was a Shetland Taatit rug.  These were intended for bed covers and were woven in two separate pieces. One half would be made by the family of the bride and the other by the family of the bridegroom. They would be stitched together just before the wedding. What a wonderful memento of the occasion.  It was created by Jess McCaffery from Edinburgh Guild.

The waistcoat in the background is by Rosemary Warren from the Somerset Guild.

A Shetland Taatit wedding rug



spinning samples




An exquisite shawl

This is one of the incredibly fine lace knitted shawls exhibited. It is by Phyllis Reeves from West Surrey using handspun Shetland fleece.  I am in awe of the skills needed to produce something so beautiful and delicate.

There were many scarves on show. This multicoloured scarf in silk and lambswool is by Janet Philips from the Online Guild.

Scarf by Janet Philips
Here is a lovely piece by Jennie Parry of the Braid Society.  They are braids made on a takadai using 57 bobbins. They are made of spun silk and paper. The background material is plain and twill weave woven using a wave shuttle.  I saw a wave shuttle in action when i was demonstrating at the heritage Centre in Durham last Saturday.  I have never seen one before and realised that it could be sued very creatively to produce some interesting effects.



Ripples on the Shore



Close up of sample piece by Jennie Parry
The close up shows the background fabric woven with a wave shuttle.


Vintage Upcycled by Cia Bosanquet
This lovely chair covering was created by Cia Bosanquet from Durham Guild.

It is always fascinating to see the source of inspiration for the pieces.  This wall hanging was inspired by N'jals Saga; a verse poem seen on a visit to the Stad Museum in Gothenburg. It is made with blends of the natural colours of Herwick fleece which is spun and then half dyed with red with the addition of black and white rovings. It was made by Caroline Thomson of the West of Scotland Guild. The poem is reproduced on the right.

N'Jals Saga retold.

Exhibitions like this are a delight to view but require a lot of hard work from the Guilds involved. The Guilds in Scotland and Northern Ireland should be proud of the excellent display.  They are Shetland, Clyde Coast, Isle of Arran, Edinburgh, Highland, Grampian, East Central Scotland, West of Scotland, Wigtownshire, Dumfries and Galloway, Tweed and Ulster Guilds. Thank you for all your hard work.

At the entrance to the exhibition there were volunteers spinning and knitting.  On the window ledge there were several Kilner jars of dyeing.

Solar dyeing takes time!

My Entry

My entry for the National Exhibition this year is a yellow silk stole. The inspiration for the weave was seeing a field of ripe corn blowing in the wind.  The corn seemed to ripple like waves on the sea.  A photograph cannot do justice to the view.

I have just received a lovely email about my scarf.  Fiona described her experience of viewing a field of waving corn and she has given permission for me to share it with you.

'On a windy day some weeks ago, I walked past a field of young corn.  I stopped to watch the wind making waves across the field, as if there were a thin sheet of very pale yellow silk billowing over it.  Then I realised that each individual stem was not just dipping and lifting, but also shimmying from side to side.  I watched in fascination for some time - knowing that I had no way of capturing it, except in memory.'

She expressed so beautifully in words my own viewing of field of waving corn which inspired this scarf.

Silk seemed the obvious choice. I wanted the stole to be a luxury item.  Silk has the wonderful property of reflecting light in so many directions depending upon the surface of the weave and how the material is draped.  I have taken a few pictures of the stole.  It is difficult to get an exact colour reproduction as the colour changes and shimmers in sunlight. Each of the photographs show a different shade of yellow.


Rolled up and displayed on my loom
I finished the stole with twisted fringes at both ends.



A long piece of weaving
The length is 225 cm and the width is 46 cm.



Close up of material

Here it is displayed in the exhibition.

My silk stole
I also had another item selected but I will show this in a later blog.

Weave Chart

Here is the weave chart for the yellow silk stole. I used a networked draft to create a swirly pattern.

Pattern draft

Warp and Weft


Warp 2/60 silk used double colour -pale straw 4085

Weft: 2/60 silk used double - colour 4020 and straw: colour 4082

Sett 36 epi

Pattern repeat is 143 ends.

Ends per inch: 36 epi

I used a  9 reed  so there are 4 ends per dent.

Silk is always a joy to weave.

STOP PRESS


At the exhibition I spoke to Liz from the Cheshire Guild.  She will be helping with the next National Exhibition. It will be held in Leigh Spinners Mill. http://leighspinnersmill.co.uk/  What an interesting venue.  I had not heard of this mill before so I must go and see it.

The theme will be Coal,Cotton,Canals   This gives plenty of scope for interpretation.

Start your creative journey now! Remember to create a small feely sample.

The non-juried section will have the theme of Still Waters and should be displayed in a 6 inch ring.


Happy Creating!

Susan J Foulkes