Flax field

Flax field

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Studio visit by the local Weaver's Guild

The June meeting of our Weaver's guild for the past few years has been studio visits.  This year I was asked to participate and I agreed because I knew I would have to really clean out the space.  Luckily, I have a great help in my sisters.  
They volunteered to come and ended up coming two different days to work on the overgrown mess.  Besides, with their great sense of style, they helped make the room look that much better with a few well placed nails and pictures that had been languishing in boxes.

Floor covered with stuff, unable to think or work here.

I had been taking out files that I needed for my classes and then not getting them put away, and the room had become a "just for now space."  You know "I'll just put it here for now."  With work weighting so heavily on me (job going away...what will I do...why wasn't I hired for the job I interviewed for...) I was not thinking about my weaving, probably that was causing half of the problem.  I know my life is better when I get some weaving and craft time in every day.

 I could hardly walk to the loom let alone weave.  Everything was stacked up, over the allowable maximum.  At least I was knitting and still doing the teaching so that my mind still felt a little like a weaver.

My Sisters and Mom worked for hours and help me organized, throw away excess (sorry Annette I still have problems letting go of my stuff), and making my place presentable.  I even got the risers on my stairs scrubbed clean and white (I could kiss you feet for this one Annette).  I had not done any work on the risers, "the knot holes are bleeding through the paint, I will clean them up when I get some paint, brushes, tape off..." any excuse not to do it.

Now the floor is clear, you can walk in without fear of injury.

Even the loom is cleared off, and I have actually been weaving!
 One of the best things is that now I can get to my file cabinet and I have been filing the 2 years worth of materials that have been waiting for me.  I cleared out several folders that were out of date and am able to get into that closet without a major "move everything out of the way."

The Guild visit was wonderful, there were still several things stashed into other rooms with the doors closed.  My son said it was false advertizing to make people think we usually live that tidy, but I was so happy to have my studio back that I didn't care.

The space is not as great as the pictures show now, I have continued going through additional "just put it here" boxes and have even managed to throw away some pieces.  (When am I going to knit that pattern that looks so 80's?  I didn't like the look when it was in.   Why am I keeping the whole magazine when I just bought it for this one article?)  I even found a box full of framed textile pieces.

The hallway outside the studio
My Sisters found the Navajo picture showing the dyes going into a rug and hung it up with the wreath/crown from a retreat when we joined the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.  The yellow cabinet at the bottom is the piece I got for Christmas when I was three years old and serves as a storage for files and folders.  The little sheep are a fraction of the collection I have amassed  I had never put anything on that wall...Always thought I would get pictures of my family up, but I never did.  
After my sisters left, I found the box with lots of  framed work and I redid  that wall outside the studio.

Still have the Navajo picture, but added some more.
I had been thinking, I knew I had bought a frame for the photo of the spinning statue that Mom took when she was in Europe and I knew that I had other ones, but I had forgot that I had framed up that many.  The Navajo piece looks great at the top, to the right of it is a piece from South America that was given to me.  The weaving uses roving for weft and changes the weft color across the piece to build the picture.  
On the next row I have a little painting of sheep that I bought at the Park City Art Festival several years ago, Mom's photo of the spinner and a card that I got showing a back-strap weaver.  
On the bottom is a wonderful piece made in Peru that I bought at the Textile Museum in DC.  It shows a back strap weaver at the bottom, and workers shearing the sheep, washing it and dyeing the yarn.  The materials used are a great combination of anything they had available, often in wild colors.  The other piece is a fillet work lace piece.  I have collected fillet work for a while, mostly to put up as a valance in the living-room, but I also have some smaller pieces like this one and a couple of table coverings.
So now the wall outside my studio is as covered as the walls in the room.  I just keep pinning, hanging, and finding things that inspire me that I need to have on the walls.  For some people my walls are probably over crowded, but they show the many things I have been interested in and the many things I would like to do, but probably will not have time to do.



  1. Your studio looks great. I love putting things on the wall because it gives a room character without taking up any valuable space.

  2. Love those 16 shafts on your loom, yes, I really did sit here and count them! Have a bad case of shaft envy! Your studio is great, sure wish I could have been there on the big day! Looking forward to hearing what you have been weaving on that marvelous loom!