Monday, 28 December 2009

Festive holiday weaving

In between the endless eating, sleeping & being merry - this festive season I have also been working on my second tapestry sample. For this I used two colours of axminster yarn from Texere Yarns. The final piece is approx 26cm x 6cm.
I tried a variety of different techniques in this sample, many from Tapestry Weaving by Kirsten Glasbrook. I initially started by trying to merge one colour into another, imagining each tapestry bead as a pixel, with each colour gradually being taken over by the other.

The middle section contains horizontal stripes, regular spots, pick and pick, and my first attempt at distorted wefts and irregular shapes. The distorted weft gives an unusual movement and texture, and is certainly an area to explore.

Finally in the last section I tried to create different textures, carrying loose wefts across areas, soumak, exposed warps, hatching and rug effects. Next I hope to experiment with using different materials for the weft.

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Christmas tattoodles

I hope Santa was good to you all!

As a present to myself I got new tattoos to represent my crafty & science sides!
The only problem with new ink, is that it makes you want more & more!

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Merry Christmas!!!!

Have been rushing to finish Christmas presents, firstly cute catnip filled crochet mice for cats Bill & Marsha. The pattern is available here.
Handwarmers for Kate, made from altering the pattern I used for these.
Last Saturday we went off to Falkirk to Callender house. As well as looking around the house and the working Georgian kitchen (freshly baked mince pie - with real mince anyone?), we also saw the Winter Warmth exhibition at Park Gallery. Some of the many highlights of the exhibition including tapestry weavings from Louise Oppenheimer. I love the movement of colours within her work. There were also intricate embroidered mixed media pieces from Midge Gourlay, as well as retro prints from Clare Nicolson and fun cross stitch from Miso Funky. Whilst inside in the exhibition, the snow came to Scotland! Here is me in the snow outside the house:
The snow covered ground is great for spotting animal footprints, check out these squirrel & bird prints - I wonder where they were off to?
Have a great Christmas everyone!

Monday, 14 December 2009

Tapestry Weaving & some silliness

At the end of November I attended a 2 day workshop at the stunning Stirling Castle. The course was an 'Introduction to Tapestry Weaving' tutored by the very knowledgeable and very lovely Louise Martin. Louise is the senior weaver at Stirling Castle for West Dean Tapestry Studio, producing the hunt of the unicorn tapestries. Louise took us through the basics of warping a loom and starting to weave. After 2 days of hard work I had managed to produce 12cm x 10cm - which certainly makes me realise the huge amount of hours that would have been needed to produce the tapestries seen hanging in our museums and stately homes! I have finally finished the exercises given to produce a 12cm x 26cm sample. The final exercise was to weave a circle (this I was dreading) and was pleasantly surprised with the outcome!
Having been bitten by the tapestry bug, yesterday afternoon I went to visit Burrell Collection. Sir William Burrell gifted his collection of over 9000 items to the city of Glasgow, of which over 200 are tapestries. Currently these tapestries are being catalogued to produce an accessible archive. The Burrell Collection is within Pollok Park, a huge park on the south side of Glasgow, and well worth a visit. On walking through the park, I was reminded that it wasn't just humans who could weave.
Finally, some silliness. The combination of Movember and craftster lead to some fantastic knitted facial hair! (PS: It is not my stubbly chin in the pic! But that of my boyf).