Like most people who make textiles of one sort or another I have UnFinished Objects (UFO's) and I'm sure a great many ‘Onliners’ do too! The start of a new year seems a good time to try and finish your
UFO's or at least pick them up again and move them along towards the finishing line. I will be looking at what I've got unfinished in my studio, show you how I get motivated to complete them and I'll be here to
help you, too.
At the end of the month we will have:
If you’ve ever hunted for unusual or feature buttons to crown your spun, dyed or woven projects, this workshop is for you! Learn to mix colours to make the exact shade you desire, have fun making kaleidoscope, monochrome, 3D and flower canes then discover what you can make with all the leftover materials to make unique and special buttons that truly highlight your special project. There will even be time to explore your own ideas and maybe explore further into this interesting craft. Using a mixture of tools you may already own plus some clay (Fimo, Sculpey, Cernit or Kato – whatever is available to your country), you can produce beautiful patterns in a couple or many different colours, however you wish to proceed. We will be making bullseyes, leaves, blends and stripes, checkerboard and flowers then mixing them together to produce a new design you might never have thought of. Have I piqued anybody’s interest yet? If you’ve ever played with plasticine or other modelling materials as a child, just let go and have a play, you’ll be amazed at what you can produce!
Today’s rare breeds were not, of course, always rare. They were the regional working breeds, whether cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, poultry etc. They developed and adapted to the area in which they lived. So why did they become rare? And why those breeds in particular? A growing population, improved road and rail communications and economic pressures forced farmers to cast around for animals that gave them more wool, a bigger carcase. Dual purpose animals lost favour: those who produced both milk and meat, wool and meat. This resulted in many native breeds becoming ‘unfashionable’ but fortunately devotees stepped in and rescued this valuable gene pool and their work continues to this day. This illustrated talk will share the insights I have gained into the histories of rare breeds.
My aim is to guide you through the handling of a variety of angora breeds and of different preparations of angora fibre. English and Swiss fibres are suggested but French, German and satinised angoras are equally welcome.
Week 1 Spinning of English and Continental rabbit fibre, experimenting with worsted and woollen spinning, either from tops or directly from a small bundle of unprepared fibre.
We’ll talk about varieties of finishing for your spun yarn.
Week 2 Combining angora singles with other luxury fibres. Exploring possibilities of two or more plies of which one is angora pure.
Week 3 Blending and spinning angora fibre with other fine fibres (animal, cellulose and regenerated) using fine hand carders, a variety of combs, hackle, blending board or blending fibres by hand.
Week 4 Aspects of art yarn including angora fibre.
Once you have mastered the craft of handling the fibre it will be a delight to spin the clipped wool of these furry creatures. I suggest the use of lightweight top whorl spindles (12-25g), bottom whorl spindles or a wheel with ratios 12:1 or faster.
What I enjoy most about work being shared among guild members is the things we learn from that sharing activity.
That is the big difference between visiting a gallery where we see picture perfect work and seeing work in a guild-setting.
So that is what we will do for a full month. Any of our core skills (weaving, spinning, dyeing and some knitting perhaps?) can be used. Pictures (show) and stories (tell). What did you do, and what did you learn from it? You will be invited to share not only your successes but also the problematic cases. Others might have found different solutions to solve the issues. Looking forward to lively discussions.
This is an immersion dyeing workshop, where you will dye wool in a variety of colours in just a couple of weeks with a limited amount of natural dyes. It’s meant for both beginners and more advanced dyers. I’ll provide you with the plan and the recipes. The colours we’re going to dye will be vibrant, bright colours. We will dye 7 colours that, together with natural white, makes for a basic painter’s palette. After that we’ll dye an extended palette with exhaust baths, through overdyeing and using some new dyestuffs. At the end of the workshop, you’ll have a range of about 17 colours.
The painter’s palette approach originated from the OLG’s Blending colours and fibres workshops (October 2008 and February 2012). Optically blended colours were made on wool carders with a basic painter’s palette of warm and cool colours. Originally, I chose colours from my collection, later I dyed specifically for it. I extended the colour range of wool tops to make blending colours a little less time-consuming.
The resulting palette of wool fibre would be great for blending colours, making batts or rolags, for felting and spinning. You could spin the colours as they are or dye singles yarn for blending in tapestry weaving. Personally, I always display the colours for a while before use. Just looking at them makes me happy! If you want to join in, please start collecting onions skins. You will be able to buy the other dyestuffs later.
A time of evaluation for the Online Guild. This week features an open discussion in which all members are encouraged to participate.
This will be an illustrated talk delivered as a three-part presentation discovering what Roman clothing was made from, who made them and how were they made. We will discover which emperors influenced the clothing and why. Was the Roman clothing influenced by other cultures before them? We shall look at the fibres, colours and techniques to make the clothing.
The workshop will begin with an examination of colour choice and the effects of weave structure in our woven cloth.
We will then examine how to create optical illusions and/or iridescence based on colour interaction and our weave draft.
Participants will be encouraged to complete actual samples as well as to created ideas for future projects. This workshop will be of interest to both 4 and multi shaft weavers.
Would you like to be able to make traditional rag rugs to enhance the floors in your home or a wall hanging to embrace your wall?
Two methods will be shown for making rugs/wall hangings. The first is called ‘hooked’ and is so named because the tool that is used is like a crochet hook but set in a wooden handle to avoid strain on the hands. The other method is called ‘proddy’ and is worked with a wooden peg to produce a shaggy, long pile rug. Both methods only require one stitch and the beginning and ending are very simple.
Woollen fabric can be used for both methods – either as it is or dyed to obtain the shade required. T shirting and polar fleeces also make lovely rugs and garments are easy to obtain from charity shops.
You will be shown how to cut the fabric into strips, draw a pattern on the hessian, how to start work on your project and how to complete the rug/wall hanging. Simple dyeing of woollen material will also be discussed as will different ways of combining the two methods of rug making, adding embellishments to wall hangings and ideas on making other items with these two rugs making methods.
Every December, Online Guild Members celebrate not only the season and its festivities, but friendships and shared activities that have been engaged with over the previous twelve months. Using at least one of our core skills of spinning, weaving or dyeing, we create, photograph and post images of Festive Cards and/or Festive Decorations into a dedicated Festive Album for all to enjoy.
There is something special about metal; it comes in so many different forms and colours and it displays an amazing range of characteristics. This year’s challenge is to explore ‘Metal’, using at least one of our core skills. You may wish to make your take on ‘Metal’ very visible or perhaps use its influence to create or modify other elements. Or you may want to try and capture its colours and patterns. Metal in some form might be a central part of your work or it may be the starting point for an exploration that takes you in new direction - let your imagination run wild. Deadlines for submission will be 30th September 2019 with a Certificate of Completion for those who meet it. All submissions will be included in a dedicated eBook.
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