Happy New Year! 2018!
I am happy to start off the year with a textile show at GAS (Gerrard Art Space). I have four framed washi paper and stitching pieces in the group show. I will post pictures of the four pieces after the show closes. Here is a sneak peak . . .
WHAT: The Textile Show, January 10 – 28, 2018
WHEN: Reception Saturday, January 13th, 3-6 pm
WHERE: 1475 Gerrard Street East Toronto
GAS Hours: Wed-Sun 2pm-7pm/Mon-Tues CLOSED
I am looking forward once again to be offering Intro to Tapestry classes starting Tuesday evenings, November 7 & 14 and continuing through the rest of the fall at Eweknit & Craft store at Bloor & Shaw in Toronto. The store itself is wonderful and an inspiring setting for the classes. Here are some samples of student work done in my recent class at the Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design. Contact me or the store directly to enrol:
phone: (416) 530-4438; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also enrol online – click on link below
Intro to Tapestry Weaving
I am very pleased to announce the launch of my new website! It still requires work – but is ready to be seen. I have included a few images from different website galleries just to give you an idea of what’s there. Please visit it when you have a chance.
Posted in Cape Breton Studio, Galleries, Painting, print, Weaving & Textiles
Tagged assemblages, Cape Breton, painting, print, Textiles, Toronto, watercolour, weaving, website
Folks in the South Haven Weavers Guild, including myself, have been working very hard for this day. I am about to head out the door to help with the Fibre Festival set up. The Festival is open today, Friday, noon to 5, and Saturday, Sunday, Monday & Tuesday 10-5. Location is the Baddeck Fire/Community Hall, Baddeck, Nova Scotia. We share the space with the quilters so there will be lots to see. Along with lots of large and soft scarves and shawls, I am selling a few of my recent small tapestries. As part of Celtic Colours, we are happy to join in the kick off of the music festival, although just visual “music” at the Fibre Festival. Hope to see you there!
I’ve taken a simpler approach to the final set of alpaca silk scarves. The warp is all one colour and the weft will also be one colour. I threaded the warp so that there is one large section of lace that extends to two inch borders of plain weave on each side. I am liking these a lot! They are light, incredibly soft and feel oh so luxurious! This is the final set of scarves for the Fibre Festival in Baddeck, in a couple of weeks.
Ikat is a challenging technique requiring patience, strong hands, and careful control of thousands of yards of yarn. I am always surprised at the results which, despite my efforts at control, have a life of their own. This set was particularly surprising and pleasing after a few scary moments. Producing scarves with the basic white achieved through resist, but also with two other colours is particularly tricky. Choosing the right colours of dye to overlay is also a part of the puzzle. I started these scarves in July and then left the warp stretched in the upstairs of my studio until about a week ago when I finished the tying off of the resist sections, and then began the dye process leading up to the weaving. I had to wind skeins of cotton yarn for the weft to be dyed in colours as well.
In dyeing ikat warp with two colours, I use the darker dye first. In this case that was a purple dye – yikes! It looked pretty ghastly, and after all that work with the tying off. Nothing for it but to move to the next step. Then it has to get rinsed, about half the ties removed, and redyed. This step involved overdying the purple with a mix of primary yellow and golden yellow dye. The results were amazing, thank goodness! I don’t aim for a fully saturated dye process – I like the somewhat varied look that comes with how my dye bath works on the yarn that is held between the tightly tied sections. So you can see hints of purple in the yarn. The yarn is then rinsed again, soaked in fixative, the rest of the ties removed and left to dry.
Finally, the warp is put on the loom – this can be tricky for a couple of reasons. The resist-dyed sections have to be split up and spread across the warp which can cause a bit of tangling, and the dye fixative makes the yarn rather rough causing more tangling. Patience! And this is just warp ikat – brilliant artisans in many places in the world produce what is called double-ikat where the dyeing of both warp and weft creates elaborate patterns as a result of incredible skill. Warp ikat is enough for me. It is challenging enough that sometimes I wonder why I do this, then I see the finished cloth and it was all worth it! I hope you agree! These five beautiful and soft cotton/silk scarf/shawls are headed to the Fibre Festival in Baddeck in October.
The alpaca silk scarves are so beautiful – I keep making more. I am building stock for the upcoming Fibre Festival which is part of Celtic Colours held at the Community Fire Hall in Baddeck, Nova Scotia in early October. This is the last set I finished and I have another set on the loom as of today.