I love my printmaking work, but because I use oil-based inks it takes a very long time for my work to dry. Because I always make rather a lot, I quickly run out of drying space to put it all and therefore need to take a break from it now and again. As I’m a maker and I need to use my hands, I decided to think of something else to do.
Over time I’ve accumulated a large stock of yarns, in all colours and sizes.
Some years ago, inspired by the beautiful small weavings of Sheila Hicks, I experimented a little with weaving. It was a completely new technique for me and I had no idea what I was doing, really. Out of a small picture frame I made a loom and it was great fun to quickly achieve a nice result. I like working freely and that way it’s not very difficult to copy the style of Sheila Hicks. The only difference being, though, that she knew what she was doing and I had never touched a weaving loom before.
And of course I know that it’s important to ‘know the rules before you can break them’, so that’s why I’ve been taking a short online frame loom weaving course. It’s been so lovely to do and I made lots of little samples.
Since then I got myself a proper weaving frame loom. First of all I made this textured cushion. I usually work very fast and am rather impatient, so it’s quite a challenge to work with the relatively slow technique of weaving. But as I used lumpy, heavy threads, this cushion didn’t take all that long and I’ll be making some more of these to use up my yarns.
Another large stock I have is that of embroidery threads and I’ve made a start using them as well. It’s a different thing altogether, though. I don’t split the threads and work with all six strands over five warps per centimeter. But it’s still very fine work and it takes a long time to fill just a small section. But it’s fun to just start out and see where it will take me.
Just like my printmaking work I will practice and experiment and I’m sure I’ll eventually come up with my own style of weaving.