Linen Weft Colors Tell the Story

Two-block broken twill is a soothing pattern to weave because of its regular rhythm. Even though this is eight shafts, it is not complicated. Simple is good.

Four colors of weft are arranged in a repeated order. Warp is 22/2 cottolin. Weft is 8/1 tow linen. This is the second of twelve placemats on this warp on the Glimåkra Julia.

Instead of assigning a different solid color to each placemat, I am using all four weft colors in each one. The colors are arranged in an order that gives the appearance of gradated color. 8/1 tow linen: blue, then green, then teal, then black; repeat, repeat, repeat. There is no set number of picks for each color. Instead, I am changing from one color to the next in an irregular fashion, letting each color softly flow into the next. Regular two-block pattern; irregular color changes.

Keep it simple. The Lord’s pattern for our lives is not complicated. The Lord goes before us. As we follow him, all those irregular changes that happen in our lives turn into a lovely display of softly flowing gradated color. We can rest in that. From this color to the next…

May you find a soothing rhythm to life.

Keep weaving,
Karen

Have enough Colors of Yarn?

I don’t want to tell you how many different colors I have of wool yarn. Most of it is 6/2 Tuna and 6/1 Fårö, but I have a good collection of other wool yarns, too. If it’s wool, I include it in my tapestry weaving. I have all of it arranged according to a 5-step value scale.

Yarn butterfly is equivalent to about 4 strands of 6/2 Tuna. I’m composing a color in the medium-dark value range.

If I combine the colors of wool just right, I can make the exact color I need for a tapestry detail. This is the challenge on which I thrive. There are never enough colors. Or, so it seems. The truth is, I have more than enough color options. Besides, for tapestry, the exact hue of a color is not nearly as important as the value of a color in relation to the colors around it.

Tapestry in progress. I carefully select yarns, mostly according to color value.
The cart beside the loom holds all the possible colors I may need for this Figs and Coffee small tapestry. I stop frequently to evaluate the colors and the value contrasts in the weaving.

The Most High God, Creator of heaven and earth, Creator of color, makes himself known. Take a look outside. Everywhere we look there is more color than we know how to express. So, in our humble attempts to make yarn butterflies in exact colors, we are showing that we are indeed made in our Creator’s image.

May you see all the color around you.

Your friend,
Karen

Handwoven Napkins for Real People

I have never woven napkins because napkins that are used get soiled. Why spend time weaving something you have to be so careful about? That is about to change. I am dressing the drawloom for napkins!

Drawloom 22/2 cottolin warp is beamed.

The napkins I have in mind are family-friendly napkins for all ages. They will get soiled, of course. They are made with grandchildren in mind–Cottolin warp and linen weft. I have a fun design for each napkin. And we’ll be ready to wipe any messy mouth. Napkins are made to get soiled.

Next step is to tie ends into threading groups to prepare for threading.

Wisdom is marked by a sense of calm. There is no dread of something ruining the day. If a little (or big) person soils a napkin, so be it. That will just serve to add a bit of history to the cloth. With a little wisdom, I’ll remain undisturbed.

May you listen to wisdom.

Happy weaving,
Karen

Let it Snow! Drawloom Treasures

Let it snow indoors! New Christmas snowflake banners are suspended up high, above our kitchen counter, facing our open living room. The three mostly-blue banners hang in mid-air so they can be viewed from either side. These are lasting treasures from the drawloom that I can bring out year after year. They’ll never get old.

Making loops from a handwoven band for hanging the banners. First, I zigzag to secure ends, and then cut the strips apart.
Handwoven linen band is cut into segments.
Loops are machine-stitched to back of banner hem with two rows of straight basting stitches (easy to remove later).

Christmas is new every year. There are new sights and sounds that add to the season. The message of Christmas is the same as always, though, that God loved us in this way—he sent his Son Jesus to be born into our world so that whoever believes in him may be born into God’s family. The newness is in God’s mercy, new every morning.

Ready for display!

Raise banners of joy to celebrate. Glory to the newborn King.

Merry Christmas!

May you celebrate from the heart.

Glad tidings of Christ’s birth,
Karen

Enough Time to Weave

The best things take time. Time (years) to know what you want to learn. Time to study, time to practice, time to put into practice what you’ve studied. By the time you finish a work of art you have invested more hours than most observers will ever realize. If you have ever made anything, you know the most common question you are asked: How long did it take you to make that? Answer: A lifetime, really.

Tapestry progresses row by row.
Cartoon under the warp is held in place with a plastic clip on each side. Center warp end is marked so I can line up the cartoon horizontally. Horizontal marks on the warp and on the cartoon provide for accurate vertical alignment.
Boat shuttle with 6/1 tow linen rests on the side frame. Linen picks are woven between pattern rows of wool colors in this style of tapestry.
As I weave, I pay attention to the cartoon that is visible beneath the warp to see where to make color changes.
At the end of my time at the loom I stand back and look at the progress. And then, I stand up on a stepstool to get a good view from above. And then, I pull out my little monocular and look through the back of it to see what I can see from a distance. What I see: one cut fig and a couple more figs emerging. You will see what I see when this is off the loom and hanging on the wall across the room. All it takes is time.

Time is the greatest gift. We always have enough time. How will we invest it?

May your lifetime reveal the good investments you’ve made.

Happy weaving all the time,
Karen