Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Weavers' July meeting

 The topic for this meeting was teatowels . . . and what a collection we proved to have between us. A couple of hours flew by while we discussed the merits of the various materials, techniques and tricks we found on investigation. Who knew the topic could be so varied and so interesting. There was also a certain amount of reminiscing about previous challenges and exchanges, and remembering friends in different parts of the country and some who are no longer with us. We were also reminded that we have a tea towel exchange at the end of the year so there was plenty of inspiration to start planning for that.

Show and tell was rather sparse and wasn't helped by me forgetting my camera. Thanks to Nancy and her trusty I-pad we do have some photos, first a multi-colour, multi-block crackle weave blanket made by Win. This must surely have been a stash-buster with so many different yarns.

Chris also had a generous-sized throw rug in natural colours with bright flecks making it sing, and a luxurious handspun weft. Chris's family and friends must all be keeping warm during these winter days and nights.

Rose brought along some fine woven linen and also a sample of her lacemaking. The latter consisted of short white and silver lace strips, some of which had been stiffened and shaped into spirals for Christmas decorations - although Joan thought they could be made into earrings!

A "post mortem" on the recent Guild exhibition agreed that it had been a resounding success and several members had made sales.

Monday, 19 June 2017

Handworks 2017

Marlborough Weavers met today at the Yealands Gallery in Blenheim where the Marlborough CF Guild Exhibition "Handworks 2017" is on show along with an exciting 2017 Scarf Expo. This is the first time these events have been held together. Here are the Award winners at the Exhibition.
Creative Fibre Award: Winner Chris Beech's "Palindrome", handspun, hand woven floor rug

Creative Fibre Merit Award: Francey Nicholls' After Dinner Puzzle :Jigsaw", felted placemats and coasters

Creative Fibre Merit Award: Judy Bool's handwoven Silk Shawl for the "Laird's Lady"

Creative Fibre Merit Award: Cherrie Mitchell's "Against the Odds" felted sculpture, a reference to the rising sea levels on the South Island West Coast
First Time Entrant in a Marlborough Exhibition: Winner Marion Wood, "It's Been a Long Day" needle felted alpaca fibre
First Time Entrant in a Marlbrough Exhibition: Merit Award, Carolyn Chapman, Handspun, hand knitted, Merino and Silk
First Time Entrant in a Marlbrough Exhibition: Merit Award, Shirley Thompson "Old School Collar" in vintage style, superfine Merino, silk sliver, vintage silk fabric

Saturday, 29 April 2017

Entwine - Creative Fibre Festival, Christchurch April 2017

Interrupting the tranquil activities of the countryside with news of when the Marlborough "Country Cousins" went to town. Many of our Guild members attended the Festival in Christchurch, at least 18 of them in one motel complex and many others elsewhere. Several members had work accepted for the exhibition and Win Currie and Chris Beech won well deserved awards for their work. Even more exciting, Joan McLauchlan was awarded Life Membership at the AGM. 

The Marlborough Mead Divas had worked hard to collaborate on an entry in the Medieval themed Runway Show, and it succeeded to stunning effect. The Top of the South did well in this segment, providing about a third of the entries. Well done all.

Here are some photos of some of the team celebrating with shared drinks and nibbles.


Friday, 14 April 2017

Guild Dye Day

Remembering Dye Days of the past, many Guild members were looking forward to a day in the Marlborough sunshine with dyepots bubbling in the woolshed at Burnside, Wairau Valley where Joan was our hostess. Newer members did not know what to expect but were excited to find out.
It didn't happen the way it was planned with the after effects of a cyclone bringing rain, rain and more rain!  However, with Joan's house richly furnished with textiles handwoven by Joan herself and more collected from her overseas travels, there was a wealth of inspiration to keep us all absorbed.  
Some dyeing did happen, in Joan's new kitchen which was only hours old. With a  microwave oven and an electric frypan - non-food appliances, designated for dyeing - various yarns and fibres were sprayed, sprinked, dipped, painted, wrapped, heated, washed or whatever and colour magically appeared. Here are a few pics of the activity. More of show and tell in a few days.


Sunday, 26 February 2017

Looms -- Many and Varied

The topic for February was to look at various types of looms that we might not otherwise see or use, as well as looking at tools and weaving equipment we find useful. 

Wendy brought along a great collection of looms, the star being this one dating from war-time Holland. The design is complex, the lifting system utilising linen thread leashes (still in excellent condition) which are made as the threading progresses. There is an attached board to ensure they are all the same size. Several different lifts are available made possible by simple slits and notches in the sides. The designer was a carpet restorer in Holland and during the war he was instrumental in leading the resistance movement.

 Rigid heddle looms included a NZ primary school scarf loom from the 1940s, still in good condition, warped and looking great, and bringing back memories for the "oldies." Hundreds of scarves were made on these, though the quality of the yarn was not great! The main restriction is the short warp - no rollers, just once around the loom. Sorry, no picture of this one. Some who used one would say they never want to see another one again!

Ashfords are the 'king pins' in the rigid heddle department and Wendy uses (and uses and uses) hers. Here it is, warped up in gorgeous colours.
 Also from Ashfords is this "Knitter's Loom" which seems a contradiction, but its clever design and compact form, which folds up into a bag, is seducing a number of knitters and spinners to consider taking up weaving. We may well be in for some new members before long? Note the variable sett available  with the multi-part reed.
 And there's more. . . Circular looms of various sizes. Woven with a blunt needle these can make mats and cushions quite quickly.
And smaller and slower, a bead loom, warped with fine copper wire. Below is a sample woven on this loom.
There was 'show and tell' as well but that will have to wait for another day. Some of it is bound for the Festival in Christchurch at Easter and so is under wraps will then.

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Out and About to celebrate a good year.

Joan's cheerful honeycomb and rag weave cushions would brighten anyone's day.     

Wendy uses a circular loom and a rigid heddle loom, both of which she makes good use of.

These are some of Wendy's hand dyed scarves.
And this is some of her custom-dyed wool.

These creatures and other items of comfort are part of a collection
gathered up by Wendy and her mother Cynthia and distributed as a
goodwill gesture to families affected by the severe earthquakes
 in the Awatere and Kaikoura areas.

Thank you to Chris for the photos and apologies if formatting of this post is all over the place. Blogger does not want to cooperate this evening!