More Soumak lines, warts and all

I have decided to set myself on a course of study within the parameters of things that I want to weave on the Mirrix. Below is a bad picture of some soumak lines.Soumak_lines

As you can see, there are a few problems with my practice so far—all fixable in the future, but not in this weaving. I’ll start with the vertical line in the center. First of all, there should be no gaps like what you see in the picture. Second, I forgot the direction of my wrap for the soumak and got a crooked line. On the left, there are two lines of soumak, back and forth. On the right, in the center of what should have been purple, there is a row of unlocked soumak, two picks of weft, then another row of unlocked soumak going the opposite direction. Now for my favorite one—the yellow triangle. I wove the angle, then a row of soumak along the angle. Kathe calls this soumak something on the order of the fixer because it hides the unevenness of the angle. That one row of soumak looked really good, and is something that I will use again, but then I decided to fill in the whole triangle with back and forth locked soumak. That section feels thicker, but really does not look thicker. The texture of that section is different from the rest of the cloth, though.

Just ordered three metal temples from Dawn MacFall. Better price than what I have paid before. I want to build up my size collection so that I can use a temple on each end of a piece (after cutting off the loom) to help with the draw in that results from needle weaving the ends back in to the cloth. I keep working on that, hoping that at some point I will have done the needle weaving and have a perfectly aligned piece! Yeah, like that’s gonna happen!

I am also seriously considering a skein winder from Crazy Monkey. I have been asked to dye some yarn for someone, so will need to make skeins. Skein-making is a seriously time-consuming task.

Website: http://sherriwoodardcoffey.com

Blog: http://sherriwoodardcoffey.blogspot.com/

What’s going on at Mirrix these days?

Mirrix has moved west! Well, part of it. Our marketing department (aka Elena) has finally settled in at her new place in Seattle. Hopefully this means Mirrix will be more “on the move” as this separation of departments warrants travel and lots of it. We are very excited for this and to spend some time getting to know the tapestry and bead community in Washington State.

In other news, we have just developed a new program called “Mirrix-Ware” that is detailed a few posts down. We hope it will allow future customers to see and experience the Mirrix Loom before buying and allow current Mirrix owners the chance to earn credits towards purchases in our store. The philosophy is that in-person meet-ups resulting from online meet-ups are the future of networking.

We have a new product in our store! $45:

http://www.mirrixlooms.com/yarnyarnkits.html

Mirrix Tapestry iPod/iPhone (or any phone) Purse Kit

“I got the purple, greens and blues”

Kit comes with:
Ten 20 yard skeins of beautiful wool/mohair yarn (you might be able to squeeze a second kit out of it); a 100 gram tube of Navajo wool warp (enough for at least a second project); beads for embellishment; c-lon beading thread; lining material; instructions with color photos

Purse in photo is final project and not included in kit.

tapestryipodkit2

I will try to keep these updates more regular!

Happy weaving and happy beading!

This feature is [one of] my favorites!

I finished my ‘braided cuff’, using my ‘weighted warp method’, as I shared in earlier posts below and will share photographs shortly, but first I’d like to mention how much I enjoyed one of the Mirrix features!

In the photo on the left, I show one side of my 16 inch Mirrix Loom. There is a threaded portion that fits inside of the upper copper portion and rests on a very large ‘wing nut’. The ‘wing nut’ allows you to tighten the tension on your warps by turning both wing nuts, (on each side), at the same time! I am a ‘tension bead loomer’ so this option is valuable.

I’ll bet this feature would be perfect to ‘tension loom’ different sized beads, not a design known for bead looming! In other words, loomed beads cannot be loomed with various size beads or the looming will show too much of your warps and the stability of the looming is compromised. This feature ‘may‘ allow a design to include smaller beads and larger beads, just by adjusting the tension of the warps, either right or left, depending on what is needed.

This idea came to mind, while looming my first piece on this Mirrix. I haven’t had a chance to work with this thought, yet, but will keep it in mind for my future looming projects. There is so much more to think about, but this could be another way to get the ball rolling for “taking looming to another level”!

I love this feature and used the wing nuts to loosen my warps for an edging technique I included in this same braided cuff. Now I want to work with arranging the tension of the warps more, at my discretion, and see where design ideas can take me!

Soumak

I’m getting a little bored with these squares, so I’m just going to get them done with as little fuss as possible. And I decided to experiment with a vertical line. From Kathe Todd-Hooker’s book Line in Tapestry, I found the vertical line section using soumak (page 46). Now, I have used soumak for ages, but usually as a base to start a piece and as a device to help hold the weft in place when it is cut off the loom. Also, since I am basically a rug weaver, I have not wanted areas of high texture, which might wear—probably not a problem since no one puts them on the floor anyway!

Below is a picture of the way I usually join a section with a dovetail. Since I weave across the whole of the cloth (not building up sections), each color goes around the “up” warp. Because of the weft going around the same warp thread, there is sometimes a problem with buildup in that area. To counteract that, I may alternate going around the common warp thread and NOT going around it, forming a teeny slit area. Dovetail

I decided to start my experiment with a vertical soumak line at the dovetail join area. In the picture below, the white line indicates the usual dovetail section. The green line shows the vertical soumak line. (You can also see the regular soumak line along the bottom edge of the color sections.) The orange yarn on the right is the tail of my starting spot, then the line, which looks just like a piece of yarn laying on the piece in this picture, then the tail of my working orange yarn. Right away I noticed a problem with doing soumak in this way—I have to remember direction. If you change the direction from which you go around the warp, you will get a wavy vertical line. At this point I don’t care about that, but it might be important later.

Dovetail_Line

This soumak could be fun, so I will experiment with some of the other soumak types while finishing these squares.

Website: http://sherriwoodardcoffey.com

Blog: http://sherriwoodardcoffey.blogspot.com/

Amy and her new Mirrix

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Amy is a member of the Fort Worth Weavers Guild and a fairly new weaver (but you couldn’t tell it from the weaving she’s doing). She contacted me a couple of weeks ago about the Mirrix, and now she has her own brand-spanking new Mirrix 16-inch loom. While waiting for the heddles to arrive, she decided to do some bead weaving, which she has done before.  Below is a quote from Amy. As you can tell, she also had a little trouble with warping, but she has used a small loom before with some similarities.

OK so I figured out the warping for the Mirrix for bead weaving. It is very different from regular weaving. I really like it and am making some plans for bigger pieces, but the planning is complicated and going to take some time so I will start a regular weaving for a little purse and see how that goes. I do love this loom. It is just much more solid than …

Amy already has quite a collection of looms. We went to an estate sale of sorts to see some looms that had been closed up in the house for a few years. She got some real jewels from the son of the weaver.

Look at some of the bags that Amy has been making from all kinds of materials, including the bags that newspapers come in here. Here are some other weavings she has done. You can see larger pictures here.

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Here is Amy’s Facebook page.

I have been thinking about buying the heddles also, but will wait and see how Amy likes them.

Website: http://sherriwoodardcoffey.com

Blog: http://sherriwoodardcoffey.blogspot.com/

Mirrix ipod/iphone tapestry kit

Mirrix Tapestry ipod/iphone (or any phone) purse kit

Kit comes with:

Ten 20 yard skeins of beautiful wool/mohair yarn (you might be able to squeeze a second kit out of it); a 100 gram tube of Navajo wool warp (enough for at least a second project); beads for embellishment; c-lon beading thread; lining material; instructions with color photos
Purse in photo is final project and not included in kit.



Will be on the site today or tomorrow!


Sunrise/Sunset












I got The Purples, Greens & Blues




Blues

Blues I dyed blues on Monday and took a picture today. Even though I’m not happy with the picture, you can still get the idea. The ones I dyed are on the right, but in real life, the skeins are a really deep, rich blue. Usually, the standard is to mix a 1% solution for dyeing the yarn. In the picture above, the blues are, left to right, 1/2 of 1%, 1%, and 2%. My plan is to use the 2% yarn for an ikat project. After the pattern is wrapped, the overdye process will bring the unwrapped yarn to around 4%. I hope that won’t be too dark, but there are some things that just can’t be totally planned out in advance. I always think I can weigh my yarn in advance, wrap the ikat pattern, then weigh any remaining yarn, estimate the percentage of the yarn that is covered in ikat tape, and dye accordingly. So far, this has not been an exact science! But I keep trying…

I ran across this blog which has an article about Interactive Textiles. And then I read Lynne Bruning’s Weavezine article about clasped weft weaving with conductive thread and LEDs. Lynne is truly a “textile enchantress” and very generous with her help. She put me in contact with another weaver, Marie. All of this brings me to a new Weavolution group: eTextiles. I want to do some LED lights on a small piece on the Mirrix. Next week I will begin to search the resources and order some materials. Time, time, time!imageWhile poking around on Weavolution, I also discovered a dyeing group that will be using the Munsell Student Color Set to train the eye to see colors and combine that with dyeing. At Convergence 2000, I took a master dye class with Michele Wipplinger of Earthues.

image The first part of the class was combined with Karren Brito (of Shibori fame) for the general discussion of color. We used the Munsell sheets to place the colors in the correct location. I learned that I can definitely use some practice in that area! The large group then broke up into two groups. I was in Michele’s natural dyeing group. After that workshop, I bought the student color set, but have yet to work with it. There is no answer key, but when I asked about that, Karren very wisely suggested that I place the color chips to the best of my ability, then come back the next day and check it, rearrange if necessary, before gluing down. I probably will get re-positional glue, if there is such a critter.

All in all, I’ve got a busy rest of the summer laid out!

Website

Blog

Mirrix-Ware!

The following is a description of our new Mirrix-Ware parties and individual sessions. Please email elena@mirrixlooms.com the form below if you’re interested in participating!

Application:
Name:*
Location (town and state):
Email address:
Blog:
Facebook:
Website:
Twitter account:
Biography: (This should include your experience level with the Mirrix,
experience weaving, inspirations, a brief career and/or artistic
history, and any additional information you wish to provide.)**

*By sending this form, you agree to the following:
Mirrix Tapestry and Bead Looms cannot be held responsible for any and
all incidents occurring during any Mirrix-Ware parties or individual
meet-ups. Each individual facilitating any kind of meet-up is fully
responsible for said event.

**Mirrix Tapestry and Bead Looms reserves the right to edit
information provided for consistency, spelling, grammar, etc.

Mirrix-Ware Individual Sessions: A New Way To Experience Mirrix

We are offering a new program designed to educate future Mirrix customers and help current Mirrix owners earn “Mirrix Credits.”  So often we are asked:  “Where can I see a Mirrix in person?” And so often the answer is:  “The nearest store that carries it is in another state.”  We want to change all that and you can help and earn Mirrix Credits at the same time.
How is this going to work?  We will maintain a comprehensive list of all participants on the Mirrix Loom Website including contact information such as email, Facebook, blog and/or website addresses, general location, a bio and at least one photo (or more) of work created by the participant on the a Mirrix Loom.
What happens next?  Our potential customer finds a participant who lives nearby and contacts that person.  The two work out where and when to meet.  The participant spends a little time with the customer showing her/him all the bells and whistles of the Mirrix Loom. If the participant loves their Mirrix, they will be a natural at this.  And our potential customer will have much more confidence about working with the Mirrix Loom. When you see the Mirrix Loom at work in person the fear factor vanishes.
If our potential customer does buy a loom after visiting with the participant, they will earn “Mirrix Credits” equaling 15% of the price of the loom he/she purchases*.  Here is the math in case you don’t feel like doing it:
These are the credits the participant will get:
Loreli loom: $17.25 credit
Laniloom:  $23.25 credit
Little Guy Loom: $34.50 credit
Big Sister Loom: $37.50 credit
Zachloom:  $48.00 credit
Joniloom:  $64.50 credit
Zeus loom: $81.00 credit
What exactly is a Mirrix Credit?  A Mirrix Credit can be applied to any Mirrix purchase. We will keep a data base of your credits that can be used at any time on any Mirrix website sales.
What are the checks and balances?  Once a participant has met with a potential customer, they will email that person’s name and email address to us. They will also ask the customer, if she/he makes an order, to email us stating that she/he met with them.  Once the sale is complete, the participant’s Mirrix Credit will be entered into our database or, if they like, they can simply use it right away.

Mirrix-Ware Parties: Share The Mirrix Love

Mirrix-Ware Parties are hosted by Mirrix owners who love their loom (or, oftentimes, looms) and want to share their love with their friends and, perhaps, with complete strangers. As a reward for all their hard work, party hosts will get 15% of every loom sale that is made as a result of their party. They will be given literature they can print and pass out and suggestions on how to make their party great! Everyone who attends one of these parties will receive a free bead pattern as a gift for attending!
If our potential customer does buy a loom after the party, the participant will earn “Mirrix Credits” equalling 15% of the price of the loom he/she purchases*.  Here is the math in case you don’t feel like doing it:
These are the credits the participant will get:
Loreli loom: $17.25 credit
Laniloom:  $23.25 credit
Little Guy Loom: $34.50 credit
Big Sister Loom: $37.50 credit
Zachloom:  $48.00 credit
Joniloom:  $64.50 credit
Zeus loom: $81.00 credit
What exactly is a Mirrix Credit?  A Mirrix Credit can be applied to any Mirrix purchase. We will keep a data base of your credits that can be used at any time on any Mirrix website sales.
What are the checks and balances?  Once a participant has met with a potential customer, they will email that person’s name and email address to us. The participant will also ask the customer, if she/he makes an order, to email us stating that she/he met with the participant.  Once the sale is complete, the participant’s Mirrix Credit will be entered into our database or, if they like, they can simply use it right away.
If you are interested in participating in either of these programs please send an email specifying which program you are interested in to the following two addresses:
We will email you the application form for becoming a participant in your chosen program.
We will start setting up the website page as soon as we have a few participants.
We are looking forward to hearing from you!

The Mirrix Performed Outstanding!

I have completed my base pattern, for this cuff, which includes my personal technique of a ‘wavy loomed edge’. The Mirrix did an outstanding job and is designed perfectly for this method of beading.

No finagling with the weighted warps, as I have with other set ups trying to complete this same method of looming. Depending on the pattern, each of the weighted warps move up in various lengths. This is where the suggestion of a ‘bobbin’ comes into serious thought. However, I did ‘swap out’ the outer right two weighted warps, when my right indent was the furthest inward. Notice where the bobbins lay now, opposed to an earlier picture, below, when I started.

I’ll be including finer details of the finishing process, in other venues, but I do want to share one detail that may make your looming better if you know ahead of time. The outer weighted warp is shorter because that warp has a tendency to be ‘pulled inside’ of the end bead. The picture below shows how the warp is ‘inside’ the end bead, when my needle has it’s final ‘pull’, securing a row.

So if any of the warps are in need of a bobbin, it would have to be the ‘outer right warp’, for any pattern. Don’t pull the warp so far into the bead, or your looming will ‘ruffle’ along this edge. Logically, with movement of your loomed piece, while wearing, the threads loosen up. Therefore, having too much ‘warp inside’, it will work its way out eventually. I offer a finishing technique that finalizes this ‘weighted warp method’, and limits the amount of ‘slack’ caused by the outside warp.

The base pattern is complete. Here is a picture of the cuff, titled “Ruppunzel”! (This was originally just a braid of rattan, but my friend Ness, from across the pond, mentioned she can’t help but think of this story, when she sees it!

Not much more till this cuff can be worn, but these details will be offered later.

The Mirrix Loom is a sturdy, well built loom. I have realized there are techniques that can be performed with this loom, unlike any other. My usual mode is to use a ‘horizontal’ resting loom, but I have enjoyed the option of the ‘vertical’ design, the Mirrix offers. I have a few more new and different techniques to share, again best performed on a Mirrix. I’ll be sharing them in pictures soon!

Mirrix-Ware!

We are offering a new program designed to educate future Mirrix customers and help you earn “MIrrix Credits.”  So often we are asked:  “Where can I see a Mirrix in person?” And so often the answer is:  “The nearest store that carries it is in another state.”  We want to change all that and you can help and earn Mirrix Credits at the same time.

How is this going to work?  We will maintain a comprehensive list of all participants on the Mirrix Loom Website including contact information such as email, facebook, blog and/or website addresses, your general location, a bio and at least one photo (more if you like) of work you have created on the Mirrix Loom.  We will help you write the bio because we want them to be consistent.  Plus our marketing director gets mad if she doesn’t get her daily dose of writing.

What happens next?  Our potential customer finds a participant who lives nearby and contacts that person.  You two work out where and when to meet.  You spend a little time with the customer showing her/him all the bells and whistles of the Mirrix Loom. If you love your Mirrix, you will be a natural at this.  And our potential
customer will have much more confidence about working with the Mirrix Loom.  When you see the Mirrix Loom it work in person the fear factor vanishes.

So what do you get out of all of this?  If our potential customer does buy a loom after visiting with you, you will earn “Mirrix Credits” equalling 15% of the price of the loom he/she purchases*.  Here is the math in case you don’t feel like doing it:

These are the credits you will get:

Loreli loom: $17.25 credit
Laniloom:  $23.25 credit
Little Guy Loom: $34.50 credit
Big Sister Loom: $37.50 credit
Zachloom:  $48.00 credit
Joniloom:  $64.50 credit
Zeus loom: $81.00 credit


There are other creative ways to earn Mirrix Credits such as throwing a Mirrix party and showing a group of potential customers how to use the loom (think Tupperware party, only better) or having the Mirrix Loom at a show where you are selling your work.

What exactly is a Mirrix Credit?  A Mirrix Credit can be applied to any Mirrix purchase.  We will keep a data base of your credits that can be used at any time on any Mirrix website sales.

What are the checks and balances?  Once you’ve met with a potential customer, you will email that person’s name and email address to us. You will also ask the customer, if she/he makes an order, to email us stating that she/he met with you.  Once the sale is complete, your Mirrix Credit will be entered into our database or, if you like, you can simply use it right away.

If you are interested in participating in this program please send an email to the following two addresses:
elena@mirrixlooms.com and claudia@mirrixlooms.com. This can be an email stating you are interested, asking some questions or you can send the whole package which will include:  your location (town and state), your email address and other addresses, if you have them, such as blog, facebook, website, twitter account, a bio and at least one photograph of something you have created on your Mirrix.

We will start setting up the website page as soon as we have a few participants.

We are looking forward to hearing from you!