Thursday, October 23, 2014

League of NH Craftsmen


Hello, friends. I am just about to pop at the seams with excitement. Yesterday I had my handwoven work adjudicated by weavers from the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen. I provided seven woven samples of my latest work (also, I wore one of my favorite pieces). Here are a few of the pieces that I took with me to Concord:





The jurors were very supportive and offered suggestions for continued development of my work, which is terribly exciting to think about. I need to learn about complying with truth in labeling laws for apparel before I can have my pieces available for sale at the League's retail shops. I'm making good headway here and will hopefully have everything ready within a few weeks.

The loom is currently being dressed for new waffleweave dishtowels. I have a warp on right now in a very jaunty grape purple cotton and plan to weave some colonial blue and sage towels as well. These have been customer favorites over the years, and I'm looking forward to having these available again.

Be well,
Kate

Monday, September 15, 2014

Hello, September

Hello, friends. With temperatures in the thirties this morning and my vegetable and flower gardens suffering from a serious case of the shaggies, there is a definite sense of fall in the air. I was pleased to issue in the season last weekend at the Apple Country Craft Fair here in Londonderry, where I sold my wares along with many other New Hampshire artisans and crafters. This year I was very happy to bring "Bug" along with me for demonstration purposes!


My booth at the Apple Country Craft Fair, Londonderry, NH

With the craft fair behind me, I am focusing on preparing for my jury session with the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen. The jury session will take place in late October. I'm to bring between 6-10 handwoven pieces with me for the panel to review. I will keep you posted!

With the advent of cooler temperatures and some upcoming exhibiting opportunities on my calendar, I have been working on some winter wearables. Here is my latest ladies' scarf, woven from a lovely alpaca and silk weaver's yarn. I kept this piece simple: just one color (this is a silver grey) and included regularly spaced lace squares throughout the scarf. I dabbled with a two color design (a sort of windowpane plaid that surrounded the lace squares) but didn't like the result (the scarf was reminiscent of a picnic blanket). Here's the scarf:


I'm thinking about another scarf using this pattern made from a raspberry pink -- a bold color for my otherwise subtle palette, but I figure it is good to keep things fresh, right?

Be well,
Kate K. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

DIY warp weights that really work

Hello, friends. As we all know, necessity is often the mother of invention. On Saturday I took "Bug," my 4 harness Harrisville Designs small loom, out for her first field trip to demonstrate weaving at Londonderry's Old Home Days event. There was a warp on the loom (rayon chenille) and after unfolding the loom and getting everything ready to weave, the first three threads on one side of the warp were really loose and the whole thing was just a big kerfuffle.

Since I was on the road and didn't have my hemostats handy (my preferred method of suspending, for example, floating selvedge threads), I had to fashion something that would work out of the items I had with me in my "artisan-show-disaster-kit," which includes things such as screwdrivers, scissors, and cup hooks (which I use for display purposes for signs, etc...).

Here is what I came up with on Saturday:


Supplies needed:
film canister
cup hook (mine have a threaded screw-like end, which is great)
pennies or other weights

I have to say, these work great. Here's a  photo of the weights on the loom:


I like the way that additional weight can be added to the film canister, and the cup hooks have shown to be securely anchored into the lid of the film canister. "S" hooks or even a paperclip can be fashioned to add a bit of length/distance between weights.

There are all sorts of ways to tension a misbehaving warp thread (I recently read filling milk jugs with water or using "plastic bags full of rocks"), but I think the film canister method is a bit more tidy and compact.

Let me know what you think! I only wish that there were more film canisters around the house!

Be well,
Kate K.