It seems that every day this month has been filled with fiber action. I was so busy having fiber fun that I failed to find the time to write about it all. Let me make up for that. I want to share some of my Month-of-May fiber activities and I’ve decided to share them in reverse order.
So, I’m starting with what I finished yesterday: my first tapestry.
Last weekend (May 17-19), I attended Spring Fiber Fling, a fiber retreat in Pickford, MI sponsored by the eastern Upper Peninsula guild, Country Spinners & Bridge Shuttlers. I had fun teaching two workshops, Seams to Be and Mohair Locks Rock!
But more importantly, I was able to actually take a workshop. I got to take A Taste of Tapestry taught by Kristin Majkrzak. I hadn’t signed up in advance as I should have. I am ashamed to admit that I asked about taking the class just a few days before the retreat. Lois Robbins, one of the organizers of the retreat informed me the workshop was filled. So, I thought I was out of luck. But when I arrived at the camp, Lois informed me that a space had just opened up in the workshop. WooHoo!
I’d wanted to try tapestry weaving for awhile. A few years back, my friend, Dianne Little had given me a Schacht frame loom. Since then, it’s just been sitting in the corner … waiting … waiting. With this workshop under my belt, I think that loom will not have to wait much longer.
Kristin’s class was only 3 hours long. That’s not much time to introduce students to tapestry weaving. To make the most of the time, she had warped the frames for us in advance. We students then got to prepare the warp for weaving. Then we learned twining as a way of creating a tidy starting edge and ending edge. Kristin provided a number of colors of Lamb’s Pride worsted yarn for the weft. We learned how to make “pig tails” at the beginning and ending of colors at the edge of weaving (you may notice a pig tail mistake on the right edge of my tapestry…). She also showed us how to wrap “butterflies” of yarn for easy weaving. And we learned the “meet and separate” style for using two colors in one row of weft.
She showed a number of folks how to use three colors in one row, but I decided to restrict this first tapestry to just one or two colors per row. At the end of the workshop, Kristin allowed us to take extra yarn home to finish the weaving. I grabbed some. I wish I’d grabbed more; I would have liked to make this tapestry a bit larger, but I ran out of yarn, and the only Lamb’s Pride I’ve got in my stash is bulky and not in the right color range.
Anyway, I was trying to go for an impression of water and trees. I’m calling this humble beginning “Lakeshore”.
Although far from perfect, it's a start. I hope this is the first of many tapestries I get to weave.