Thursday, March 12, 2009

Embarking on an adventure...

of a different kind for me--having a textile woven of my design on a jacquard loom.

Bethanne Knudson standing beside jacquard loom at Oriole Mill as group fabric is being woven

This came about when the members of SEFEA--Southeastern Fiber Educators Association--began talking about the potential of this opportunity for a future exhibit. The conversation about a collaboration grew into this project.

One of the SEFEA members, Bethanne Knudson, is design director of Oriole Mill in Hendersonville, NC. Those who were at the fall SEFEA meeting provided Bethanne with a tiff file, developed from whatever source we wanted. Then she prepared and wove the pieces at the mill, five of our image across the width of the fabric for each of us.

We received the fabric recently and our creative task now is to manipulate jacquard woven textile in anyway we want to. The end goal is for a joint collaborative work that will be exhibited in an upcoming show of SEFEA members, at Gray Gallery, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC in June.

The drawing was done while I was at Hambidge Center in October 2008. Here it's hanging on the wall along with the hickory leaf "model."

The drawing was done with a Magic Rub eraser, lifting lines and shapes from vine charcoal.

I cropped the digital image with Photoshop and converted to a tiff file to send to Bethanne.

So far, my fabric is simply hanging up where I can look at it and think about where it might lead me. Even though it's from my design, right now I feel detached from it since my hands weren't involved with the creation of the weaving. I'm going to have to handle it before ideas surface, I think.

The pieces are 8" square repeated five across the width of the cloth.


  1. How interesting! I appreciated the comment about the need for your hands to get involved in order to think. This is true in my work as well. And even back in the ancient typewriter days, when I wrote essays, I always had to do the final rough draft in handwriting because the physical process of writing helped me focus my thinking.

  2. These are really cool, though, Tommye! They would make great pillow tops for your studio! Though I do prefer the look of handwoven tapestry, and kind of resent that this is also markets as 'woven tapestry.'

  3. Yes, I am feeling the same way. When I get my pieces, I will photograph and send to you.
    I am thinking of cutting and adding to them. My idea in them on the collaboration was, that it is a network of branches, that are a metaphor for the network we have created.

  4. I, too, would want to live with this for a while before deciding what to do. Suddenly, the muse will arrive! They are pretty cool, though. But like K Spoering said about these being marketed as "woven tapestry."

  5. I'm very curious to see where you go with this. I can understand feeling detached and the adventure is how to work with it now. Very curious - possibly this is an opportunity to try a technique you would not risk on something you are more attached to...