Thursday, December 31, 2015

Still here, still weaving!

It's the first project on my new-to-me Shannock Loom!

Sunflower Tapestry : A work in progress

Hello very neglected blog. It's the last day of 2015 and I haven't been here in a very long time.

Well, I'm back. I think. I've got a lot of things in the works these days, but it's all good.

My current project is a tapestry of a sunflower. This is the first tapestry on my new-to-me Shannock Loom. She's a beauty. I still haven't got the whole treadle thing working the way I want, but I don't mind picking the warp as I go.

This project is special not just because it's the first on this loom. It's special because of the yarn I'm using. Most of the weft was spun and/or dyed by the late Helen Bryant, a friend of mine, and a very creative weaver, spinner, dyer, potter, and basket maker.

Helen was very opinionated about, well, just about everything. She had no use for chemical dyes, and was often seen collecting dye plants in the wild. She had no use for purples, blues, or pinks. The blue yarn is some that I spun and dyed myself. I figured she'd forgive me the use of blue in the piece since it was hand spun.

When Helen went into an assisted living facility, a friend brought me several bags of her yarns. I've been hanging on to it for a while. When I was casting around for a design for my new loom my eyes fell on Helen's yarn. I'd been growing sunflowers in my garden, and loved them. It seemed like it was meant to be.

Here's the current project. I've been working on it for over a year now. But hey, I'm in no hurry. Just enjoying the process...

Gratuitous weft photo

Where I left off today, 31 December 2015.
I'm almost to the halfway point. So maybe by this time next year it will be done!

Have a Happy New Year world. I wish everyone peace, happiness, and lots of time to do the things you love!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Tapestry in Unexpected Places : Origins

I've been meaning to write this post for a while now. Please forgive the poor quality of the photos. I took them with my iPad.

Last summer we were dealing with old dog Pyper's mysterious skin condition. Our regular vet got us a referral to the Veterinary Hospital at Virginia Tech. I had forgotten that my friends Lynn and Bernie had commissioned and donated this tapestry to the Vet School, so it was a special pleasure to become reacquainted with it while Pyper and I were hanging out in the waiting area.

"Origins" was designed and woven by Jean Pierre Larochette and Yael Lurie. I quote from the informational sign:

"A husband and wife team, Jean-Pierre Larochette and Yael Lurie created this multi-dimensional tapestry to showcase the coordinating dimensions of veterinary medicine and the natural world. It is woven in the classic French Aubusson style, from the back rather than the front. ... The piece has many layers of symbolism and meaning. Serpents are especially appropriate for the College of Veterinary Medicine as they symbolize the vital forces in life and are a long standing symbol of the medical profession. The serpents are entwined to form a double helix, the genetic code of life. Hands represent creativity, compassion and healing - all essential to veterinary medicine. A vast variety of plant and animal life can be noticed throughout the work, tucked away in different layers of the tapestry."

 You can see more of their work at the American Tapestry Alliance web site in an extensive on-line exhibition.


Friday, March 15, 2013

Truckload of Tickle

I never knew you could get tickles delivered! :-)

Monday, March 11, 2013

January Photos

Yes, I know it's March. I'm trying to get caught up.

I took these in early January on the Huckleberry Trail.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Random things of awesomeness.

So, you know when you go to the thrift store and see something kind of cool but you can't figure out what you'd do with it so you don't buy it? And then you go back a while later and it's still there, and you still can't figure out what to do with it so you don't buy it again. And then you go back a month later, it's still there, and you still like it, but this time, even though you don't know what you'll do with it, you buy it anyway. Because if it's still there, you were meant to have it.

That's what this is. Yes, it's a red ceramic tile toilet paper holder. Crazy, right? I love the color and wish I could see a bathroom that this was used in. Really. My bathroom is pink and I hate it, but I might be able to love a bathroom that had awesome red tile. Maybe. Anyway, when I got the roll holder home I had my lightbulb moment. This little beauty is going to become a dispenser of garden twine. Oh, yeah. I'm off to the hardware store to get a replacement springy thing to go in the middle.

The second brilliant find of the day, also at the YMCA Thrift Store, was the discovery of this ginormous roll of vintage Con-Tact paper, pictured under my new twine dispenser. Seriously cheerful, isn't it? And the roll is huge!

You may be wondering how I know this fab Con-Tact Paper is vintage. Well, look at the back of the roll...
Hints for covering walls!?! That explains the size of the roll....

Isn't everything easier when you read and follow directions?
And wear a little frilly apron.

I think everything in this room that isn't fabric has Con-Tact paper on it!

Seriously. Awesome.

I see a Con-Tact desk set in my future.
If there's any Con-Tact paper left over after I paper my kitchen...

And on to the kitchen. Check out the dining set.
So vintage, so hip, so now.  And Con-Tact on the fridge, too!

Saving the best for last.
She's also faux wood Con-Tacted all of her kitchen cabinets.
Check out the roll on the floor.
Wow. Just wow. I'm not sure how many yards of this stuff I have, but I'm getting inspired.