A week ago I took a bookbinding workshop on the “snowshoe” binding. It seems to be a variation of the long stitch with some decorative touches and is used on flexible covers. Thought it was a very interesting look so I went on to You Tube to see what there was on crossed bindings. I found a very interesting one that is deceptively simple. Each stitch group always has 3 columns (signatures). The number of rows can be anything as long as the number is odd. The cover is made of 2 pieces of heavy paper glued together with a piece of tyvek in between for stability. My cover was silkscreened with one of the screens made from my design in the screen making workshop I had taken the week before. The cover is very stiff so perhaps for the next one I may add a closure.
Last year I took a workshop using the Schacht Cricket rigid heddle loom. I already owned a Harrisville Easy Weaver but the Cricket looked more ‘grown up’ so I bought one. To make it seem even more ‘grown up’, I bought the 15 incher! Well as I spend most of my time doing eco printing, prepping for indigo shibori and, of course, kumihimo, my new loom sits quietly on the shelf. One of the problems I found (which contributed to discouraging me) was that propping the loom on the edge of a table, which works well for the smaller loom, does not work so well with the larger one. My heddle kept flopping forward when I placed it into any of its positions. That being said, I did find there is a stand available for the loom. This would mean I could sit under it, leaving it relatively level so the heddle would stay in place. I did have some nice sales last year of my various items so I am going to treat myself to a stand. Hopefully, this fix will be as encouraging as I hope.
Before I put the loom on the shelf, however, I did warp it for a project. My workshop leader may not approve of my warp choice but it does look so nice with the handspun I’m going to use for the weft.
To further inspire me to weave, I found a new book on rigid heddle looms. The title is Inventive Weaving on a Little Loom. The author, Syne Mitchell of WeaveZine fame, reviews the different portable rigid heddle looms available and goes from start to finish on how to warp, weave and finish pieces as well as doing some troubleshooting. She also has several projects using different weave structures. The book is packed full of great stuff.
This is a well done book.
As soon as I saw this was available, I treated myself. It was all I expected it to be. There were no ‘little projects’ to be found. There are just some interesting ideas to get me thinking about how I could expand my eco printing and natural dyeing projects.
In the book, Alice includes ideas about collecting found objects. I know there are a lot of books containing that subject but it is good to be reminded periodically. She talks about collecting ‘colors’, how to make natural ink, how to select items for rust printing, weaving and twining with natural materials, combining techniques and more. In addition to all that, it is a pleasure to look at. It is one of the books I don’t store on the bookshelf but keep out to review.
I recommend this book for anyone interested in using natural materials and found items in their textile work.