Starting with the studio

It has been a while since I have written about fibre fun. This is not because I have not been doing anything, quite the opposite. I have been doing so many different things that I don’t know where to start. I feel scattered, too many things to tell.

So I will start with my new studio. I have taken over the building where we used to make cheese and I love my new space.

I have lots of windows and light.

Electricity and water means I can listen to music and make a cup of tea.

My collection of woolly dolls to keep me company.

And a separate room for getting messy with felting and wool picking.

In this new space I can work on different projects at the same time. Like this weaving on my table loom.

With the four harnesses on this loom I can weave more complicated patterns, like the raised pattern on this scarf.

I have also been able to complete some projects that have been sitting around for a long time. A certain felting project that didn’t turn out right, (when felting doesn’t work) is finally finished.

I divided the strips into two colour groups and then wove them with a wool warp to make two separate wall hangings.

This month I have also been busy with my weaving class. We have been displaying are work at school shows.

There was a lot of interest in what we are doing, with a few sales and the possibility of new students.

 

Add teaching felting classes, and shearing, spinning and dyeing mohair, I have been quite busy.  But I will leave those for another post.

Is it really weaving?

I have been weaving!  Well I think it is weaving…I am not sure.  It depends on who you talk to.  The finished fabric looks like weaving, there is a warp and a weft, but the warp and weft are put on the loom at the same time with one continuous thread.

What I am doing is Continuous Weave, or Triangle Loom Weaving, although I am actually using a small square loom.  (I do have a large triangle loom as well).

Square loom and wool

This all stared a couple of weeks ago when I joined a weaving night class.  The company my husband works for runs about 20 different courses for family members.  These courses are free and range from gardening and cooking through painting and sewing.

I signed up for the weaving class.  The young woman who teaches the class is the same woman who dyes and sells yarn, Huella Indigena, which I mentioned in this post.

Woven squares with my hand spun and yarn from Huella Indigena

We began the class with square looms because they are small, use minimum yarn, (great for hand spun), and are quick to finish.  The square looms can be warped like a frame loom with the nails or used diagonally like a triangular loom, (as in the pictures).  Then, by joining the woven squares we can make different things; ponchos, sweaters, blankets.

The idea of the classes is that even with a small amount of time we can make objects, (for ourself or for sale).  Depending how quickly students learn we may use different looms, but the teacher does not want us to learn so many techniques that we never finish a project.  I can sea the reasoning behind this because some looms can take a long time to warp.

Front of small poncho made with six squares

Back of poncho

I have made one small poncho with six woven squares.  The wool is hand spun and dyed from my sheep, (see previous post).  Picking up stitches and knitting the neck is a nice way to manipulate the poncho so it is more than six pieces of fabric sewn together.

I am really enjoying the class because I get to chat with other women who enjoy crafting and yarn.  And when a group of women come together, we not only share ideas about design and technique, but also give each other support in the trials of our daily lives.