Shimmering surfaces

Today I took a class – a “textile taster” with ATASDA. A Taster is a one day workshop, technique rather than project focused. You add some skills to your “toolbox”, maybe a refresh, a change of mental gears… plus have a fun play day with like-minded people.

Our tutor was Claire Brach, an expert embroiderer with an adventurous mind-set. You can see some of her work here, showing experiments incorporating metal in her textile pieces.

Claire had prepared packs of materials for us, including various weights of copper and brass shim, copper mesh, a fine woven copper cloth, sequin waste and that great source of aluminum – beer cans (VB, and already washed and cut into a sheet). We cut, coloured by heating with a blow torch, embossed, twisted, crumpled, pounded, stitched, punched and lots more verbs. For light relief we made crunchy beads with cellophane, synthetic organza and a heat gun, and coiled beads with wire and “wibers” (wire and threads twisted together).

How am I going to incorporate any of this into weaving? I don’t know – yet!

There has been weaving, in fact a lot more weaving than blogging and I have some catching up to do given this is meant to be a complete record of my learning.  A checklist:

  • diversified plain weave blogged here
  • some “freeform” weaving (somewhat saori-like) blogged here
  • a series of experiments in different rates of shrinkage leading to a nearly finished scarf in silk and wool/cashmere blogged here
  • currently on the loom, silk bookmarks in advancing twill. blogged here

I think that’s all.  Oops, no –

  • making a little treasure bag on a cardboard loom – tomorrow my family is gathering for our traditional solstice lunch, and I’m hoping to give my nieces and nephews their first taste of weaving. blogged here

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June 2009

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