Thursday, May 13, 2010

May Inspiration

The one thing I had trouble with in warping was bending down to the floor to change colors. I just read in Handwoven a suggestion that you put Velcro tape in a place to conveniently hold the thread while you are using another cone. I think I'll try that for my sister's scarf. Another thing I had trouble with was when I went to wind on the warp, the planets were looser than the rest of the warp. Not sure why, but I'll be more aware as I wind on next time. Finally I wanted to wind more than 1 thread at a time and had never done it in a way that I needed to keep the sequence. That was a challenge! I only had one miss at the cross. But luckily your thread by thread color pattern helped.

On the edges I put 2 black floating warp threads per side. I think 1 would have been plenty. That helped a lot to keep my edges straight. The weaving went smoothly. I could advance the warp every 3 to 5 inches (I hate advancing the warp!). It didn't take me long. I used a weft color that I love the name of as much as I love the color - UKI's Quarry. I liked it better than the Black. I tried several warp colors, Quarry worked best. You can see on the loom picture I wanted to use up black at the end. There are 2 colors of weft in that picture - black and Quarry.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Kathie's Story

Hi Bonnie,

Here are the promised photos of my shawl.

When I saw the Horoscope Shawl in Handwoven, I was immediately drawn to the project and decided that I could do this (it was plain weave, and being a beginning weaver, this was within my realm). I ordered my horoscope from you and the kit from Cotton Clouds in Bambu. Prior to this, my experience in weaving was limited to some scarves on a RH loom and some classes on a multishaft loom. 2 scarves and some Huck placemats were followed by the purchase of an 8 shaft loom.

Once everything arrived, I read through it all and then the questions started coming. Foremost was "OMG, what was I thinking?". I had what I'd call "a crisis of confidence", and everything sat for about a month or so. I started sending you my questions and with your kind assistance, I realized that I actually could do this. I knew how to wind a warp and get that warp onto the loom. I was allowing myself be intimidated by things I hadn't done before, i.e. changing warp colors at each end of the warp, working with a very wide warp. It all seems silly now that I've woven the shawl, but it was a fantastic learning experience for me. Thank you for your patience and understanding at having to answer all those questions. You're a wonderful mentor!

I did exactly as you suggested and took my time with each step and actually enjoyed all aspects of the project. I learned a great deal from your suggestions and tips which helped my refine my techniques as I progressed.

I purchased 2 clamps to use for the floating selvedges which worked beautifully - I've never has such uniform edges! I also took your advice about the skipped dent in the reed.

I was somewhat concerned about the colors, but again you were correct. The color combinations are amazing and I'll never look at color in weaving in the same way again. You've opened my eyes to so many beautiful possibilities! I'm planning to do at least 3 more shawls for my daughters and granddaughter.

This has been the most challenging, rewarding and inspiring experience for me and I feel that I can now call myself a weaver!

Thank you for being such an inspiration!

I hope to take a class from you someday in person. You enabled me to make beautiful cloth!


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Colorful Maggie

Hi Bonnie,
RE: color horoscope weaving kit
After receiving the horoscope instructions, I looked at the warping order and groaned. Winding off warp is my least favorite task. but the little sample you included was motivation. I ordered my bamboo from jane stafford in BC.I also enlarged the width by adding about 8 ends in each of the color groupings to make a shawl.

After getting it all beamed, I wasn't sure I liked it. As much as I love color, it was overwhelming. I had put on extra yardage to experiment with weft colors. tried out black, both a dull and shiny. sampled with a grey thinking it would tone the whole thing down. looked dead. even tried a cream. that was way wrong! In your paper work you had commented that I had a lot of orange and red. I had a cone of red cotton the right size. bingo! I love it.

Only have about a yard woven at this point but it will be finished hopefully by Christmas so I can wear it to the family dinner. Will send you a finished photo after the holiday.

It's done. I love it. but. . . . I'll never wear it. Way too bright. I should have used pastels of my colors. Am thinking I'll use it for a table cover.

RE: horoscope shawl doneRe: horoscope shawl done
I had taken a front view photo but the picture had the dog's butt and tail in it but it also didn't show the stripes as well. My weaving space is also my quilting space so the floor does get really trashy.

I think I had promised you a finished photo by Christmas. didn't happen. It was off the loom but not cleaned up. twisting the fringe took almost as long as the actual weaving.

Thanks so much, Bonnie.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

More Memphis

Hi Bonnie!
Nature has been kind to some of us, though most don't see the weather we've had this weekend as a blessing. Schools were closed on Friday and are again today because of the ice. (Lucky we didn't have your workshop this weekend!) Those of us who teach got bonus weaving days.
In my usual manner of having to do everything two or three times to get it right, I used most of that time making my fringe.
Anyway, here it is, my finished piece. It is hard taking your own picture.
The workshop was terrific. And I am so inspired. I need more snow days!
Mary Anne

Dear Bonnie,

It has been said “that good things come to those wait” and I know this is true. Taking your Horoscope Weaving Workshop was a long anticipated dream of mine. In December of 1999, I saw your “Horoscope Scarf for New Millennium” on the cover of Handwoven magazine, loved the idea, and put it on my Future Projects List. It took ten years to bring this to fruition, but it was well worth the wait.

Your workshop went beyond all expectations. Bonnie you are a great teacher. You gave us so many wonderful ideas using color and showed us countless gorgeous samples. I am so thoroughly inspired, that 48 hour days are needed, just to weave a small portion of them. Oh, the joy!

My piece was woven using Pearl Cotton from my stash, 10/2 for warp and 20/2 for weft. Due to my workshop loom size limitations, it does not have a border. The finished width of 11 ½” and the beautiful hand of the cloth make this perfect to wear as a scarf or use as a table runner.

Thank you Bonnie. Memphis loves you!

Mary Jorgensen

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Memphis Medley

The Color Horoscope Weaving Workshop, presented to the Memphis Guild on January 23-4, brought together a fabulous group for an exciting foray into color exploration.

Hi Bonnie. !!

Fringed, washed and dried the horoscope shawl made in your Memphis class.
It was exquisite until the 2nd round in the dryer !
The wool weft just took over, but it feels wonderful, is much softer than expected and a great color experience. Since we didn't have to decide which colors to warp with, it took away the 'decisions, decisions' problem.
Although, we *did* have to decide what weft to use for the shawl after we wove samples of different wefts. I have enough warp left so that I can play some more with wefts and maybe make little things like pouches and sachets.
You filled our heads with many things to ponder as life progresses. The
*desires* wrappings are next on my list and will tackle before the end of the week. That will be fun as well, since the colors are so beautiful. As you said many times "There is no right or wrong." so they will all turn out as wonderful as our shawls. Thank you for such a fun and positive experience. Hope you will visit us again. !!
Kaaren Reid

Kaaren's shawl picture was waiting for me when I got in from the airport on Monday the 25th. By the time Thursday rolled around, I received 3 more pictures of finished weaving. I felt very inspired (grin).

Here is Bobbie's
Hi Bonnie,

Your Horoscope Workshop was the best workshop I have ever attended in my 10 years of weaving. In addition to providing the opportunity to warp and weave something new and different, I learned a lot from the tips you shared with us, gathered from your 50 years of weaving.

Warping the loom was somewhat of a challenge, because of the many changes in thread colors and the fact that I was doubling the Bambu 12 yarn I used. Your directions were clear and easy to follow, though, so that helped me get through the warping process successfully.

The actual weaving was a breeze. I wove plain weave with a single thread of Bambu 12. After washing the scarf, I trimmed the fringe to 2 inches.

I finished my scarf Tuesday and washed it Wednesday. Even though I planned to twist the fringe, I changed my mind and just trimmed it to 2 inches.
The warp is Bambu 12, doubled and the weft is single threads of Bambu 12. The finished scarf has a wonderful drape and softness.

If your ears are ringing, it is because we are still talking about how much we enjoyed your workshop and that we learned so much. Thanks again for a great experience.

Elizabeth's--still waiting for her words.

And Joloy's
I enjoyed the workshop. I learned about color and ways to figure out how to put more color in my weaving. It was very inspiring with so many ideas to work with once you get home.
I would say to my friends that this is one workshop that they should take.
My color horoscope scarf is woven in 10/2 cotton warp and weft is 20/2 cotton in black.
It took longer to measurer the warp than I expected. It is worth the extra time to weave this scarf.
Thanks for a great weekend.
Joloy Watlington

Mary Anne's will follow soon, and I hope the rest of the class. This was surely my best workshop to date!