Sunday, June 21, 2009

Finishing, finishing . . . no not quite finished

Here's a photo of my latest tapestry just off the loom on the carpet; prior to any finishing. And the second one is after some finishing. See any difference?

There's a five pound chihuahua on the left to give you an idea of the size... The width started out 32 inches on the loom, quickly dropped to 31 inches at the beginning of the piece and 30 inches at the end of the weaving. After finishing it is about 29 inches wide.

The second photo shows how it looks after a nice rest, tweaking of the warps, tying of the weft tails, straightening the lines in the frame, attaching twill tape & velcro & a lining, machine sewining, hand hemming, cleaning, hanging, etc.

Is it finally done?

No not quite yet...I seem to have an odd drape on this piece. I guess it has to do with the different yarns I used. The outside 'frame' is lighter and more flexible while the inside is fairly dense. It's the inside that is bulging in and out in different places with a cardboard like texture. I am hoping by having it hang with some weight all the way across the bottom of the piece the drape will straighten out.

I'll let you know how it turns out.


Friday, June 12, 2009

Finishing up the warp

I have been happily weaving on this tapestry for the last several days. I am happy with the results so far although there are a few small slits where three turns on top of each other seem to be letting in light. Pretty much everything you see in the photo was completed in the last two days. Around the design is a three inch black woven frame which isn't readily apparent in the photo.

I am glad I didn't pull off the warp to weave one of the other two designs I had come up with. This one, albeit simple is pleasant to weave. And I get to use up my favorite warp.


Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Designing for a Specific Size

I had some leftover warp on my large Shannock tapestry loom that I wanted to use up. Typical of a weaver - not wanting to waste anything. Waste not- want not. It is indeed a beautiful warp...I had dyed it a midnight blue and had intentionally put on more than I needed for the first piece in anticipation of doing another piece.

I have had a terrible time trying to figure out what to weave on this leftover warp. I had an entire cartoon completed along with yarn selection on the theme of Pluto. It was a tongue in cheek rendition of the object being thrown out of the 'Club of Planets'. However, it didn't quite seem right on the leftover warp.

I then designed a more realistic piece using a great photo I took of a volleyball player at the beach. I even figured out a way to insert more warp in the middle of the piece for greater detail. For some reason I could not get the design to look right given the size of the warp I had left.

Next I decided to play with optical illusions and made a great piece consisting of three shapes - those impossible shapes. I am sure you have seen them. They are the ones that look right until you realize the perspective is all wrong. I came up with what I thought was an exciting design but again couldn't make it fit right into the warp I had left over. I was so excited about this design I even contemplated removing the leftover warp and putting on new warp which would fit the design.

Then I remembered how nice the midnight blue warp was and how I really enjoyed weaving with it. I took a deep breath and went back to the drawing board. I designed a simple piece. I designed it quickly. Nothing hard. Nothing complex. One shape. Golden proportions. Enclosed in a frame filling the leftover warp. Done.

And I have been happily weaving ever since.

What have I learned?

My designs dictate their size - not visa versa.