Now This Year

New year 2017 is beginning! It’s time again to take account of where we stand in our life’s dreams and goals. What can we check off the list? And, what is still in progress? And, maybe there’s something new to add. But first, let me count my blessings. I’m filled with gratitude, thankful for you! What a JOY it is to have friends like you to walk through this weaving journey with me.

Here’s what you’ll find on my looms right now:

Striped cottolin warp for towels.

Glimåkra Ideal loom: Striped warp for the sample kit is all set! Winding quills is next. Then, weaving! If all goes well, a few pre-warped plattväv towel kits will show up in my Etsy shop.

Transparency with linen warp and background weft. Cotton chenille weft inlay.

Glimåkra Standard loom: Weaving a transparency. 16/2 linen warp and background weft. The weft pattern inlay is cotton chenille.

Practice piece on little Hokett loom.

Hokett loom has the start of a simple stripes tapestry practice piece. 12/6 cotton warp, 6/1 Fåro wool weft.

Thank you for joining me through 2016!

May you have joy in the journey.

Happy Weaving New Year,
Karen

22 Comments

  • Beth says:

    I love the “Year in Review” and see so many favorites. Your work is simply beautiful and inspiring. You are brimming with talent!

    Happy New Year, Karen!

  • Jennifer says:

    A lovely and inspiring post! I enjoyed the video of your weaving year.

  • Truly Blessed, thanks for all you share.

  • Loyanne says:

    Thanks for sharing. Seeing the Faro piece bring to mind a question. I am working on a Whig Rose scarf. Trying to weave according to tradition and the warp is 8/2, weft is Faro and 16/2 for tabby. Just wondered if you had used cotton and wool and how you wet fingers she’d it ? Thanks

    • Karen says:

      Hi Loyanne, I’m sure your scarf is beautiful! The monksbelt does use 16/2 cotton for tabby, and Faro wool for pattern weft. I’m not sure of your question… I have a feeling that spellcheck gremlins took over. Could you try asking again?

      Karen

      • Loyanne says:

        Boy did the gremlins take over. I wondered how you wet finish a piece out of cotton and wool?
        Thanks.

        • Karen says:

          Ok, now that question makes sense. 🙂 That’s a great question! I did not wet finish my piece because I am going to use it for a hanging, so I wanted it to soften up or get distorted through washing. I did steam press it, though, which helped to tighten everything up and straighten it out.

          I think if I were going to wet finish this cotton and wool combination I would gently hand wash in cool water with mild soap, like Eucalan, with as little agitation as possible. And then hang or lay flat to dry. If I had a sample piece, I would try washing that first, before submerging the main article.

          I wish I could give you a better answer…

          Thanks for asking,
          Karen

  • Fran says:

    A year of accomplishing lots! You do black and white especially well. I enjoy your posts.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Fran, The black and white was a new experience for me. It was a surprise to me to find out how much I enjoyed working with it! Thanks for stopping by!

      Happy New Year,
      Karen

  • Cindy says:

    I just joined in on your posts! It’s part of my goals for 2017 to surround myself with others who love weaving, and to be inspired and motivated to continue learning from them. Thanks for having this blog!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Cindy, A big welcome to you! I do love weaving, and you will find many who comment here are the same way. I love it that we can all learn from each other.

      Happy weaving new year!
      Karen

  • Lynette says:

    Hi Karen,
    I enjoyed seeing your transparency, because I have used the same 16/2 linen to weave pictorial transparencies for the last 10 years or so. Is your sett 12 epi? How many selvedge warps are doubled on each side? I have never tried using chenille for the inlay, but this gives me a new idea to try!
    Happy New Year, and God bless you and your family!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Lynette, I’m excited to hear that you weave pictorial transparencies! This is my first attempt, and I’m enjoying it very much. I would love to see some of your work. Can you send me pictures?

      I am using a metric 50/10 reed, which is just a little more dense than 12 epi, but pretty close. I doubled 4 selvedge warps on each side, as instructed in The Big Book of Weaving.

      Happy weaving new year!
      Karen

  • Liberty Stickney says:

    Hi Karen, Happy New Year! Thank you so much for all the work you do for us, your posts are always beautiful and informative. I have been sick for a bit but I can’t wait to get back to my loom soon.
    Happy weaving,
    Liberty

    • Karen says:

      Hi Liberty, It’s no fun to be under the weather. I hope you’re all better very soon!

      I always appreciate your sweet encouragement.

      Happy weaving,
      Karen

  • Tom Z says:

    The year in review is so Inspiring Karen!

    Sometimes we don’t look back to view where we’ve come from. We just keep plowing forward. The past gives us a much needed perspective on where we’re going. Your video reminded me of that simple face. And the music was perfect for that reflection.

    Thank you Karen. Keep up the ‘good’ work.
    Happy weaving new year!
    Tom Z in IL

    • Karen says:

      Hi Tom,
      I completely agree! Perspective can make a world of difference.
      I appreciate your thoughtful words so much!

      Happy weaving new year to you!
      Karen

  • Pat McNew says:

    I love your web page. I look forward to each one. I have learned a lot from you even tho I have been weaving for about 12 years.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Pat, This is such a sweet thing for you to say! It’s my goal to be a help to others, so I’m thrilled to hear you’ve learned some things here.

      Thank you so much for taking the time to spread a little kindness. 🙂
      Karen

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Quiet Friday: Going through Phases

You will not often find a bare loom here. But every loom has its phases. The “Big Loom” (Glimåkra Standard 120cm) is in the empty phase right now. I finished weaving the coarse linen twill with rya knots. Now, I wait for the 16/2 linen that I ordered for the next project. Big Loom, don’t worry; you’ll be dressed again soon.

Rya weaving just completed.

Rya pieces ready to make into interesting shaggy pillows.

Glimakra Standard Countermarch Loom 120 cm

Affectionately known as “The Big Loom.” Seldom seen undressed. Glimåkra Standard Countermarch Loom 120cm / 47 inches weaving width.

 

The “Baby Loom” (Glimåkra Ideal 100cm) is in the weaving phase. It has plenty of warp on it, so I am still happily throwing a shuttle. I should get two more towels from this warp.

Red and brown goose-eye towel on the loom.

Color stripes of brown and gold break up the red in this towel on the goose-eye warp.

 

I want to start weaving a band to match the towels on the “Baby Loom,” for the towels’ hanging tabs. That means I need to put more attention on finishing up the current warp on the Band Loom (Glimåkra two-treadle), so I can start the new warp. This is the hurry-up-and-finish phase.

Two-treadle Glimakra band loom in use.

Band loom is situated for weaving in short bursts. I often stop and weave for a few minutes on the way to the “Big Loom” or the “Baby Loom.” Three sisters look on from the stairway wall. (One of those girls is a younger me. Can you guess which one?)

May you make the most of the phase you are in.

Happy Weaving,
Karen

(The discount coupon on my About Page is good for another week. Thank you!)

2 Comments

  • Deb says:

    Karen,
    Do you use an aluminum beam protector on both beams or just the front?
    Thanks!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Deb, I have an aluminum beam protector for both beams, but sometimes I remove one (for instance, for taking a picture), and forget to put it back on. Thanks for the reminder! I see I forgot to put it back on the back beam. I like to have it on there especially during beaming, when the cords are going over the beam, and at the end of the weaving, again when the cords are going over the beam.

      Karen

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Now What Are You Counting?

Have you noticed how much counting there is with weaving? I am constantly counting something! This time it’s rya strands. Wrap three threads around a four-inch cardboard template, counting eighteen times around; cut the ends; repeat. Separate into nine groups of three strands each. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine groups. Tie rya knots–one knot, two knots, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine knots; repeat.

Prepared groups of threads for rya knots.

Åsborya wool, Mora wool, and linen are wrapped together around a template, and then cut. The group of threads is held together in a clothespin until ready to use.

I like to count the good things that touch my life. Family, friends, health, beauty in nature, and pleasant adventures, to name a few. These are the things that shine through, even in difficult times. These are the things worth counting.

Separating threads into "triplets" for rya knots.

Group of natural color threads are separated into wool-wool-linen triplets for rya knots.

Thankfulness to God acknowledges that the good things woven into our lives come from his benevolent hand. God is always inviting us to walk with him. Thankfulness steps us into that inspiring walk.

What are some of the good things you’ve been thankful for lately?

May you have more blessings than you can count.

Thankful for you,
Karen

(There is a discount coupon code on my About page just for you, my reader friends, to use in my Etsy Shop during August, 2014.)

2 Comments

  • Betty A Van Horn says:

    “Thankfulness steps us into that inspiring walk.” Yup, God has been laying this on my heart too for the last year. Thanks for sharing Karen. As always the weaving is gorgeous my friend!

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Rya, Rya, How Does Your Garden Grow?

Lay the groundwork; add a row of rya knots. Because of the coarser sett, and the thickness of this doubled linen weft, this rya weaving is progressing faster than the previous one. Tying all 36 knots across the warp is still the slowest part. But I can see progress. I like to see something happening, don’t you?

Rya knots (wool and linen) covering coarse linen cloth.

Green strands of thick Åsborya wool, fine Mora wool, and 16/1 linen, sit in a cluster, ready to be separated. Each rya knot is made of three strands, one of each type of yarn/thread.

I weave about an inch / 2.5 cm of point twill linen background first. It provides a framework to hold the mixed wool and linen rya knots. This means throwing the shuttle at a good pace for a short distance, and then stopping to add another row of rya. Through this moving – stopping – moving – stopping, progress is made. A little green and beige garden is growing on the surface of the linen structure. It is during the slow part that the “growing” happens.

Are you troubled about anything today? Don’t lose hope. If progress seems slow, you may be in a growing season. The Lord rebuilds ruined places and replants desolate fields. It feels slow now, but in time, you will look back and see a garden covering what once was ruins. Keep going, you’re going to make it.

May your garden grow.

(I did finish the previous slow rya project and turned it into three fun pillows. You can find two of them in the Warped for Good Etsy Shop!)

Making progress,
Karen

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Rya Over Linen This Time

Slow and deliberate, rya knot tying is a satisfying exercise of patience. This background cloth feels like coarse canvas. You can imagine how robust the fabric is, with a hefty 8/2 linen warp, and the same, doubled, for weft. Threaded in a point twill, the cloth is simple, but texturally vibrant. The yarn pile, called rya, is made with combined threads of thick Åsborya wool, fine Mora wool, and fine 16/1 linen. (You can see my previous rya project in the post, Are You in a Pretty Mess? And if you want to see exactly how to make rya knots, check out this post –  Quiet Friday: Making Rya Knots.)

Forming rya knots in coarse linen fabric.

Rya knots are formed one at a time by wrapping around, under, and through each pair of raised warp ends. The background is woven between rows of rya knots with doubled linen weft, using a double bobbin shuttle.

I simply step on the “pile” treadle, which raises only shaft four, and tie rya knots around pairs of the raised ends. This process works because the fabric was planned and designed to have rya knots inserted on its surface. In a similar fashion, people are designed to receive God’s helping hand.

God wants to give us the ability to flourish in life. That’s his grace. We are made for that, and it happens when we offer “humble” threads. We must wear the cloth of humility as we interact with each other, revealing our coarse, simple, honest self. This is where God inserts his grace. In this process of his, he patiently makes us his work of art.

May you flourish in the things that matter.

Respectfully yours,
Karen

2 Comments

  • Thank you so much. We serve such a great GOD. I need to know how to double weave and with that, browsing through your vocabulary list to identify and refresh terms I needed, I found this entry that not only showed me the function of the double bobbin shuttle, but gave me the encouraging words of GOD’s love for me and that HE wants me to succeed. Thank you, Karen for the encouraging word.
    Pam

    • Karen says:

      Dear Pam, Our Lord is so timely. I love it when He sends a word at the moment we need it–even through a blog post about weaving. Thank you for giving such a sweet reply.

      All the best,
      Karen

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