Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Fun at the Flower Show

On Friday my mum and I tootled off to the Hampton Court Flower Show. I'd never been to a flower show before and we had such a lovely day. What struck me most was the riot of colour and I thought I'd post a selection of the photos I took.

My favourite show garden was a tiny little black and white one with a summer house - it was so simple and so striking. I don't tend to think of black as being a 'garden colour' but it worked really well with the bright white gravel and the fresh greens and greys.

After blood, sweat and instructions...comes a bit of fabric

After spending hours fiddling about with the loom I've finally produced a tiny piece of fabric! I spent the last few evenings going one step forward and two steps back, realising that I'd got the tie up completely wrong or totally misunderstood what I was supposed to be doing. At one point I had put the warp on the loom but missed out the knee beam completely! Very frustrating at the time.

Still, there are some mistakes I know I won't make again - I think I was just so excited that I wasn't thinking logically. A bull in a china shop springs to mind. So when I stepped back from the loom and read some of the weaving blogs out there and read the Glimakra instructions on how to set up the countermarch I actully started thinking about things logically and then the penny dropped. I tested the tie up with one treddle first and then it all seemed so obvious.

I know I've still got some work to do on the shed and the tension of the warp isn't the greatest but the weft is straight and overall I think it will do for my test piece.

I've only managed two repeats so far but it's huge progress and I wanted to post this before I carry on. Needless to say I slept like a baby the night that I got it all sorted out!

As you can see from the photo I haven't got a pirn on the shuttle yet - I've cut some bamboo from the masses that we have in the garden and thought I'd use that.

Monday, 6 July 2009

New loom!

My husband, Ivan, was generous enough to give me a loom for my birthday in July. So I am now the proud owner of a GlimÄkra Ideal with 8 shafts which I purchased from a very nice lady in Poole.

Having only used a 4 shaft table loom until now, progressing onto the floor loom with the added complexity of another 4 shafts is very exciting - and a little overwhelming! Studying the loom while it was set up in the lady's living room was a real eye-opener and luckily my husband remembered to take some photos. When we got the dismantled loom back home it suddenly looked like a giant wooden jigsaw puzzle!!

Needless to say we had fun putting it back together so now it's sitting patiently upstairs waiting for a warp and tie-up. That's the bit I'm struggling with now - the mass of string in a heap underneath the loom. Having finally convinced myself that the idea of jumping into the deep end and following a complicated pattern can wait, I'm going to make a nice easy warp of one or two colours and practice. Practice makes perfect - fingers crossed.
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