The focus of my own weaving is usually some aspect of the natural world that has inspired me, influencing my choice of colour and textures. For example after having a very close encounter with a pair of Kingfishers whilst in a canoe, I was inspired to weave in oranges and turquoises, a vivid and dramatic colourway.
Understanding Double Weave.
During 2020, which has been the strangest of years for us all, my weaving has been one of my go-to activities for peace and relaxation.
I have used the extra lockdown time to develop my own practice which has been precious time well spent for me.
Having upgraded my own weaving looms last year, I have been learning new techniques and practices and been on my own little adventure.
Part of that learning was taking an online course on 'Understanding Double Weave' tutored by the very excellent Cally Booker, who is based in Dundee, Scotland. (Fully recommend)
Apart from opening up a whole new way of weaving to me, it has helped me understand design and structure of cloth.
An added bonus that I was not expecting was a whole new weaving community which turned out to be global and was a sheer joy for me being connected in such a disconnected time of pandemic.
Limes and Raspberries.
This Summer commission was inspired by my client, who has a beautifully renovated home. Very wisely she has decorated in neutral tones so that she can change her colours with the seasons. She was inspired by the combination of the limes and the raspberry pinks to bring a 'zesty and summer' feel to her home. It was a lovely uplifting piece of weaving to work on and the surroundings made it look even better.
Spinning yarn to achieve the colours and textures is very important to my work. I love colour mixing and being able to card and spin my own fibre to get the effects that I desire.
Recently, I had a commision to weave three scarves for three special friends of a friend. They all had their own favourite colourways.
It was such fun to work with other peoples favourite colour selections for a change and see how different they looked on completion.
Occasionally I dye some of my fibre. This is great fun and especially natural dyeing. Last summer I had a fun day with natural dyeing in the garden with a friend. I found weld growing very near to my home on waste ground, so we popped it into the pot and got an amazing yellow which I later spun into yarn and used to weave a coffee cozy commission.
From fibre to finish!
Early on in my weaving adventure I dyed silk to make a scarf, one of my first great achievements. I used a pattern on a greetings card as my inspiration and built my palette around the subtle blues, lavenders, greens and a splash of yellow. I used acid dyes to space dye the different silks, this is a process where you paint colour with the use of a pipette. I used these threads in my warp as well as my weft. I was completely hooked by the time I had finished this scarf, and couldn’t wait for the next project.
SELLING MY OWN PROJECTS
Maker's Markets and Artisan Craft Fairs are usually where I sell most of my products. In my experience Maker’s Markets are a great way to stay in touch with customers, get ideas and understand what people enjoy. I would say that most comments I receive from people are about colour. Having fun with colour just adds to the joy of making. This is something I encourage in my workshops , enjoy colour, be bold and experiment to find out what works for you.