Thursday, December 21, 2017

A little holiday cheer

We have put down our shuttles and moved the spinning wheels to one side while we work on the holidays.  Even the knitting needles are silent.  So we are busy shopping, wrapping presents, cooking and of course eating. 

Which brings us to the Qualicum Weavers and Spinners Guild potluck.  Now this event is special in two regards.  First we get to eat, drink and be merry together and second we get to distribute the proceeds from our Elegant Threads Show and Sale.  The sale was a great success thanks to a horde of volunteers and an even larger horde of shoppers.  Our silent auction brought in almost $1,000 which will help with the rent obligations we now have.

cable yarn
Earlier in the year our president had set guild members a challenge.  Weavers were asked to pick (without peeking) a series of cards with suggestions for designing a woven piece.  Spinners picked from a  series of cards specific for  creating yarn.  Participants were told to bring their results to the December pot luck.

The spinner who produced the blue variegated yarn was challenged to use many values of the same colour, print or paint the yarn and use a cable technique.  If you look closely you will see many different shades of blue.

baby sweater and legings

The knitted outfit is hand spun yarn dyed with mushrooms.  The jacket design is asymmetric.


Unwaxed candle wick is the unconventional material used for weft in the small mug rugs.  Also look for a block weave structure, curves and shades and varieties of white with a cut fringe.  Now that is a challenge!

overshot&finger weaving
The overshot runner on the right had to incorporate overshot as a weave structure, monochromatic colouring with stripes of different lengths, wool as a material and finger weaving as an embellishment. The fringe is finger woven.  The wool warp was painted in shades of blue to create background stripes of different lengths.
The colourful mats required a natural vegetable fibre as one of the materials.  The weaver used iris leaves and cat tail stalks.


bright colours, holes, chenille

Another weaving challenge included Bronson lace as a weave structure, holes as a design feature, bright colours only, chenille as a material and crochet as an embellishment.  A crochet trim in chenille was added to create a colourful border.  The piece looks very Caribbean.

painted warp, Fibonacci series


Or how about Fibonacci series in the design, yarns of two different thicknesses and an 8 shaft weave structure on a painted warp.



The wall hanging required shades of grey, texture as a design feature, a supplementary warp structure, Danish medallions for embellishment and boucle as a material.  The weave structure was based on Theo Moorman's technique for inlay which uses a supplementary warp.  Danish medallions outline a rectangle in the centre.
shades of grey

Executing the challenge piece is only part of the learning.  The real value comes in the group discussions and problem solving.  So, while not everyone produced a piece in the end we all had an opportunity to generate new ideas that will resurface in some future project.






Have a great holiday season.  Enjoy the Christmas lights your neighbours when to heroic and sometimes dangerous lengths to put them up.

Xmas lights and snow men
January will be a busy month for guild members with knitting and weaving classes for beginners, study group meetings and on January 22nd we have our Annual General Meeting.

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