Saturday, 14 September 2019

It is a long time since I wrote a blog. I have been busy catching up meeting deadlines and generally getting on. I have made progress in weaving. The last thing I finished was a tablecloth with trees on it, intended for the Guild exhibition. I have put in two stewarding sessions at the exhibitionand lots of questions asked.
What I then put on the Schacht was a Swedish overshot which I got from 'The Weave of the Month Club'. It seemed rather interesting. On four shafts with a black and white ground and, in my case a red pattern. The draft was given with instructions and they used a brown linen pattern. After a few repeats, I decided against this colour scheme, finished off that one and started gain with maroon which was thicker anyway and looked much nicer.  But I did not like it, mostly because the repeat is 40 wefts and it is difficult to keep all the throws correct. Although I worked out a method of reducing errors, I would not swear I got everything correct. I will not be doing this draft again. A couple of photos are shown below.

So all tidied up and ready for the next project and I have just changed my mind about that. I was going to do some Quigley on the Schacht. Sure enough, it is only 8 shafts but the treadling is horrendous. I have a lovely draft but not for the Schacht. For the Megado and this needs another 7 yards weaving. So I will do something less taxing.

I have done another job which took the stuffing out of me. A friend of mine is currently editor of the yearbook for the British Iris Society and she decided that it was time an elderly member told the BIS all. Because I live very near him, I was nominated for the job of taking down his words (He cannot write well these days) and then I discovered it had to be done by the end of September so a mad scramble. It has been delivered to the editor. But - - much shaking of head.

The other thing (nice thing) that is coming up is the start of the autumn print classes. I have been to a wonderful exhibition of 1930s lino cuts at Dulwich Gallery. In October, I am off for ten days to Valencia, our summer holiday.

Friday, 23 August 2019


It is five years since we last rented this house. We have done it five times since the start which was 2000. Interesting that there is a full family turnout. Even one grandson,currently working in Australia has returned to be with us. So there is a fair assortment of cousins.

Today is my turn to cook and, by request it is French fish soup.A lot of work for 13 people. Work is dished out equally. This means some days you can do what you like and just sit down to supper! On Wednesday we made a much longed for trip north to the viaduct de Millau. We extensively patronisedthe service station at the north end where there is a good viewing platform. The station also includes a fine cafe and a deli!

The point of the visit was photography. The views that I could get were not the best I could imagine. I reckon the best place was in a helicopter down the valley about level with the road!

Wednesday, 14 August 2019


I have completed a couple of weeks o bookbinding. Not bad considering how long since I did any. Firstly I repaired a favorite thriller. The cover was completely detached and I had lost the spine cover. End result was this.

So that was easy. The next one not so. I bought the text-block of 'Peter Pan' from Volcano Arts and it was pretty well a miniature book with dimensions of 3 by 4 inches but very thick. So much so that it was 6 cm at the spine when sewn along the spine and 4 cm on the fore-edge. 24 hours in a book press sorted that out. The cover was a design by me and printed on linen cloth.

Now I have moved on to weaving although I am off to France in a day or two so should be packing!

Friday, 2 August 2019

A Small Tablecloth

Not sure I like it. And not my best bit of weaving. I washed it in the 30 minute cycle and something has shrunk. The brown yarn is cottolin and so is the blue. The green is cotton. Oh well, I did wonder whether I should wash before the exhibition but it will have to be washed in its lifetime anyway.

The other two lengths of fabrics have been found and their ends sorted out. All forms have been filled out and entries parcelled up to hand over tomorrow. And I have done the accounts for the last two months. I got a bit confused over the accounts when I was out of action for three months. Now I am completely up to date, paid various bills and generally tidied up.

I also found the next warp for the Schacht and have cleaned up the studio, ready to start the next weaving project.  But also I have investigated what books need binding, have put them in order of priority and started on one. This is a decayed paperback which I do not want to throw out and so have started to rebind it as a hardback. Rather a lot  of waiting about so have done yet more tidying up.

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Lots of weaving

Our Guild is 30 this year and is having an exhibition in Newbury Museum (by invitation!) and the theme is 'the Woods'. I think, but I was ill at the time, that originally the theme was 'If you go down to the woods today'. Anyway my contribution was designed months ago - but not woven and, since the deadline is fast approaching, I started. It is a small table cloth, suitable for teddy bears, in Biederwand, with a row of trees at each end. However (amazing how there is always a 'However'), I ran into trouble. It is on 8 shafts on the Schacht and the problem was that most of the treadles had to lift a lot f shafts, like 7 out of 8!!!. So since the threading was okay, I turned the draft upside down so that I can see the back of the fabric. Much much better for weaving and I am now weaving at high speed. But I do not like not seeing the front when weaving. I keep looking at the true front with a torch and a mirror and it looks okay but - - -  I do not trust myself.

I am working on the assumption that I can mend anything awful. I started weaving Monday after lunch and finished one row of trees. This morning I have completed the centre section and have started on the second row of trees. I should finish this afternoon and be able see how good/awful the front is. I will take some photos.

About the only rule for submission is that the work is recent. I have two lengths of fabric which I will also submit. I need to find them first!!  

Sunday, 28 July 2019

Trip to Malvern

Yesterday was very tiring. I drove up to Malvern, starting at 0900 hours and it rained all the way so much so that it was foggy and everyone on the motorways was driving slowly. Then had lunch with a friend, napped for an hour and finally attended a rather wet wedding. They had set up a marquee and that was waterproof  and so that there was time and space to gossip. The people getting married are my sort of age and so they have friends of similar age and people were present whom I used to work with. A bit disconcerting to be greeted with happy shouts of 'Pat Foster'!!! The time passed quickly and I was back on the road  to get home at 1930. No rain just a sunset which was rather good.

I spotted two sites from which I should be able to get a good haul of photographs. Life is going to be easier. Various deadlines have been met and I need to finish weaving a table cloth by next Saturday to hand it for the Guild exhibition. Should be doable. Watch this space. 

Friday, 19 July 2019

A Treat

Yesterday Dorothy and I went to Kew Gardens. I have not been for years and expected to enjoy it. But in addition we went to see the Chihuly exhibition and that was fabulous. Large coloured glass works of art all over the Gardens. There was also an exhibition in an art gallery which I did not like so much. I decided because the works looked better sited amongst greenery.

We also looked at the Marianne North paintings which need another visit. All in all a lovely day and the cream tarts in the Orangery Café were fantastic!!

I do not seem to have done much this week. Off to printmaking now. I have run into problems with the tablecloth I am weaving in Biederwand. Without paying any attention, I have created a draft which needs 5 or 7 lifted shafts and there are too many mistakes! So I am going to try reversing the draft and as the deadline for submission is rapidly approaching, I must do that soon.


Blog Archive

About Me

I am weaver and - -. I dye my yarns with acid dyes, I paint my warps, put fabric collages and stencils on my weaving. I have three looms, a 12 inch wide, 12 shaft Meyer for demos and courses, a 30 inch Louet Kombo which is nominally portable but has a stand, two extra beams and a home-made device containing a fan reed. And last a 32 shaft Louet Megado which is computer controlled, has a sectional warp and a second warp beam and I am the proud owner of an AVL warping wheel which I love to bits and started by drilling holes in. I inserted a device for putting a cross in. I have just acquired an inkle loom and had a lesson from an expert so I can watch TV and weave at the same time. I am interested in weaving with silk mostly 60/2 although I do quite a bit with 90/2 silk. I also count myself as a bookbinder with a special interest in Coptic binding.