Friday, January 24, 2014

Back to Work

It is still winter here on Vancouver Island, although it is so warm that we hardly need Elfrieda's lovely mittens (see photo on right).  Even though the weather is taunting us to go outside and play we have been at work in our studios.  The show and tell part of our January meeting was proof of that.

 Angela made this interesting cape from her variegated hand spun yarn.  She claimed that the same style could be worn as a skirt but declined to model it.  The soft and changing colours remind me of a wild landscape with mosses and grasses.  In contrast, Sylvia's top is based on bold colours and strong lines that complement the shape of her vest. The two different colour schemes work well with the two different designs.
 Colour and design seem to be a challenge for most fiber artists.  Weavers have a greater challenge than some because they must consider the effects of crossing different colour threads.  With that in mind our guild formed a colour study group this year.  The group have been working on colour theory and putting some of that theory into practice.  The result has been a subtle change in some of the pieces that come to our general meetings.  Members of the group are becoming bolder in their choice of colour and many are now working with a broader range of colours than they did in the past.
One of the tools for studying colour is the "colour gamp".  A number of them have appeared in this publication in the past.

The photo above is a small section from Linda's colour gamp but as you can see,(in spite of my slightly out of focus photo) it is also a twill gamp.  This sample shows how colours blend as they cross.  It also demonstrates the impact of the twill weave structure on the colours.  Two lesson's in one project!

Blankets were on the program as well.  Here we have two versions.  You cannot see the "nap" on the red blanket but it is quite luscious and begs for a cuddle.  The multicoloured version is a twill blanket woven using a double weave technique in order to get a bed-sized blanket.

Also keeping with the double weave theme is this fine wool shawl in patterned double weave.  You will have to look closely at the photo to see the patterns.  The two colours used are close in value so the pattern is muted.  The pattern is asymmetrical with circles at one side, waves through the middle and a narrow pattern that echo's the circles at the top.
The pattern in David's rug is not muted.  He prefers bold colours and large patterns.  This rug if for his studio.

This purse is woven in one piece on a card board loom using scraps of fabric.  The fabric has different textures and bold colours which give the bag a funky look.  A simple piece of card board can make a very inexpensive and portable loom.

At our January meeting guild members were challenged to start planning their pieces for our fall exhibition.  The theme for our show is "Keep Me Warm".  It will take place at The Old School House Gallery in Qualicum Beach from October 27 to November 17.  This may seem like a long way off but all of the pieces for the show must be submitted by September 22nd.  Summer time activities usually take precedence over studio time activities, especially when you live in an area that attracts a lot of visitors so the actual studio time available is always less than it appears. is back to the "salt mines" folks and have fun designing something unique that will "keep you warm" next fall.