Beginnings and Beyond

by | Mar 22, 2024 | Fibre Arts, Handwoven, Uncategorized, Weaving, Workshops

This month we welcomed new members in the guild.  It was great to see so many new faces.  Many of them are fibre enthusiasts but new to spinning and weaving and they have come to our guild through our beginner spinning and weaving workshops,

The guild offers beginner courses twice a year and second level courses for those that want to go further.  The beginner workshops are good opportunites to try out a new craft without investing in equipment or materials.  Whether you fall in love with the craft or not you will gain a new understanding of how yarn is made and how cloth is produced from it.  You may also go home with a collection of mug rugs.

beginning spinning fleece to yarn

mug rug magic off the loom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three of our intrepid new weavers also recently completed a basic weaving design course.  Their challenge was to design then weave a cotton boucle tea towel.  In the photo, you can see how the design was worked out on graph paper.then translated into a striped warp.  This particular design seems to be evolving into a plaid.

boucle tea towel in progress

 

 

 

 

 

 

bound weave in progress

The March workshop program also included an introduction to bound weave.  This technique creates a thick cloth suitable for rugs and runners and wall hangings.  Bound weave is weft dominant so that the warp is completely covered.  It is probably best know in the form of krokbragd, a 3 harness version.  Bound weave is often associated with Swedish and Norweigen cultures.  We tried our hands at figurative bound weave, making motifs that resembled trees, animals, people etc.  We started with a strong, widely spaced warp that was threaded in rosepath fashion (although a point twill would do).  The threading produces a symmetrical motif.  The weft threads were thick colourful wool yarns or 4/8 cotton yarns.  If the threading uses 4 harnesses, it takes 4 picks to complete one row so progress is slow.  A piece with a lot of detail, like the lighthouse pictured below, takes patience and concentration.

lighthouse in bound weave

flower show in bound weave

 

Our samples were less than 6 inches wide.  The weaving gobbled up yards of the weft which must be tightly packed to cover the warp threads.  If you see a floor rug or large wall hanging done in this technique think about the hours and pounds of yarn that went into the making.

 

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