More Than Wall-Hangings

Often people associate tapestry weaving with just wall-hangings, but you can make a lot of different things with a tapestry. This week I made a set of tiny tapestry pillows, perfect for a tiny dog to rest his head or as a pop of accent color in any cozy room. 

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Join The American Tapestry Alliance, Save 10% on a Mirrix Loom!

It can be tough to find a Mirrix Loom on sale, but if you join American Tapestry Alliance you'll get a code for 10% off any size Mirrix Loom good for three months after you join AND you get  to benefit from being a part of a wonderful organization dedicated to the art of tapestry weaving.

American Tapestry Alliance offers inspiration, networking, education, discounts  and more. Interested? Click here to learn more about membership!

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Tapestry is Weaving but Weaving Isn't Always Tapestry

You've seeing these adorable woven wall-hangings on Instagram and Pinterest and you're ready to take the plung e to learn how to make your own woven art. Maybe you take a class on a basic frame loom or you make your own loom from a picture frame and follow some instructions you find online. Now, you're ready to take this craft to the next level. What's first? A high-quality loom! You've heard of Mirrix Looms, but they're tapestry looms... is tapestry the type of weaving you're interested in? What exactly IS tapestry?

Tapestry is...
 
Weft-Faced

This means you can see the weft (the threads that go across the loom horizontally) and not the warp. Imagine a piece of woven fabric. You can usually see both the warp (the threads that go around the loom vertically) AND the weft. With tapestry you are actually COVERING the warp threads with the weft.

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A residency at Fibreworks Studio & Gallery

 

Hello!

Last week I did the first 7 days of a summer residency in the yurts of Fibreworks Studio & Gallery in beautiful Madeira Park on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. It was the hottest week of the year so I experimented with weaving both inside the yurts where I've got a fan, and outside in the shade. The two spaces were about the same comfortable tempurture so I opted to stay inside on most days since I had the best of both worlds with a skylight above me and the kind of shade that I didn't have to chase all day. I did end up spending plenty of time outside for a natural dye adventure which had me dyeing and overdyeing a single skein of yarn to achieve the perfect yellow, over two days. I ended up dyeing with osage and then overdyeing with fustic to achieve the dark yellow-orange seen in the photos below.

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The Mirrix Looms 2017 Summer Weaving Challenge

Summer is here and we’re looking forward to sunshine, longer days and weaving in the sunshine on those longer days. To help keep our wonderful community inspired this July and August, today we are launching Mirrix’s very first Summer Weaving Challenge. 

Every Monday through the end of August members of the challenge group will get an email with a new weaving-related (we are going to focus on bead and tapestry/weft-faced weaving, but all weavers are welcome to join) challenge. Challenges will be about the weaving process rather than the product and can be completed at any time through the end of August.

Here are some challenge examples:
-Give someone a weaving lesson. This could be a young person, a family
member, a friend, a stranger… anyone! Even if you’re a beginner, there’s always someone who can learn from you.
-Take your loom out of the house. Go weave in a coffee shop, on the beach, in a park… somewhere where you’ve never taken your loom before. 
-Weave something totally out of your comfort zone. This challenge gives you permission to make mistakes, to do something crazy or silly and wildly creative.  

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The Newbie's Guide to Pick and Pick

I remember learning the tapestry technique Pick and Pick. I was trying to follow instructions in a book and found myself constantly making mistakes. The middle of the piece would look great, but my selvedges were riddled with errors. My "aha" moment came when I stopped for a moment and considered how lines in tapestry work and how that creates the Pick and Pick pattern.

The key to understanding Pick and Pick is the same key to understanding how tapestry weaving works at a very basic level. In tapestry, your warp threads are always covered. When you weave one pass through your weft, you have successfully covered HALF of your warp threads because you are weaving over and under warp threads as you go across. When you weave a pass going back the other way, you cover the other half of those warp threads. Therefore, two passes with your weft makes a complete line. 

With Pick and Pick you weave one weft in one direction in one color and then another weft in that same direction in another color to make a line instead of weaving in one direction and then back in the other direction. 

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Living the Woven Life

This will be my last blog post as part of the Social Marketing team for Mirrix Looms and I must say it certainly was a fast year!  What a joy it was to represent an amazing company so full of passion for weaving and design!  Thank you Claudia and Elena for giving so much of your life's effort to make Mirrix such a strong and successful company!

So it got me to thinking ... what would I like my final blog post to be about?  The word Connection kept coming to mind and how could I relate that to living my life as a Tapestry Weaver?  Weaving is all about connected threads; fibers crossing over one other, creating a texture or a single design.  Isn't that what our lives are truly about as well?

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Creating my Tapestry Woven Pouch ... Part Two!


I have been weaving on my Tapestry pouch pretty steady and I must say, these handyed silks of Claudia's are not only beautiful in color, but such a joy to work with!  I wove at a 10 dent sett and the weaving process just flowed along for me.  I decided to add a few beaded rows along the way!  Sometimes that can be a little tricky, but with patience it all flows perfectly.

I wrote notes along the way during the entire weaving process.  Things I discovered, didn't want to try again, things I enjoyed and wanted to remember.  In honor of Poetry Month (always in April) I even wrote a poem!  Why not write about what you love . . . right?

This has been such a fun project for me.  I have woven many pouches with chunky fibers, mixed threads and elements of nature, so weaving with strictly hand-dyed silks, at a fine sett was a different experience for me. I really enjoyed the slow rhythmic feeling it gave me along the way. I do encourage you to try something different, we all learn from new experiences.

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Win The Tapestry Bracelet Kit for Weave-Along 24!

Mirrix's 24th Weave-Along is a FREE online event. In it participants will learn how to make a beautiful tapestry bracelet. This weave-along was designed specifically for beginners who hope to get some extra support learning basic tapestry skills.

To learn more about this fun (and free) event, click here.

Want to win the weave-along kit? 

(If you already purchased the kit and you win we can either issue a refund for the full cost of the kit or send you a second kit.) 

 

 

TO WIN: Tag a friend you think would like to take part in Mirrix's 24th Weave-Along on [ONLY] one of the following three posts:

On Instagram
On our Facebook Group (pinned post)
On our Facebook Page (pinned post)

Winner will be chosen at random on June 1st and contacted via social media. Contest ends at the end of day on May 31st, 2017.

Good luck! 

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Weave-Along 24: The Take-Your-Loom-Out-Of-The-Box Tapestry Bracelet

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