The weaving above was made by my creative friend Ruth Grant. She is a busy person who has a job, an important voluntary role as a governor in a primary school and is involved in a number of other activities outside her home. She also loves working with textiles, in particular with wool. She owns a spinning wheel and spins her own yarn, sometimes dyeing the yarn herself as well. Then, she loves to weave her own cloth, using this loom.
Some time ago, we were chatting over a meal at her house and she was talking about wanting to create a woven piece, but almost despairing of finding enough time for such a large task. Weaving is a slow process, where the fabric is built up row upon row, thread by thread and she couldn’t see where the space could be found in her busy life. I encouraged her to have her loom out somewhere where she could see it, and do a small amount every day.
Just recently, I was at Ruth’s house again and was delighted to be told that she had gone for this idea and had produced not one, but two, woven pieces which had then been stitched up into cushion covers.
This is a rich selection of moorland colours: heather, bracken and leaf. I love how the colours change across the surface of the cushion as they combine with each other and how the neat addition of the appliquéd silver thread adds surface interest. As you can see, the weaving is set into a gold-coloured cotton frame and the gold fabric is also used for the back.
Doing a slow craft like weaving, embroidery, hand-stitched patchwork, hand-quilting or knitting is such a valuable activity. In a world of constant electronic connectivity, these crafts constitute a bit of time apart, where concentration on the work of your hands and the beauty of the fibres and fabrics creates a breathing space, a place of calm. So don’t be afraid of tackling a big project. Just take it a bit at a time, a little every day, and enjoy the process each time you add a portion to your creation.
Which is your favourite slow craft? I’d love to know.
If you liked this post, you might also enjoy this post about Anni Albers here.
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This is my ‘Mama camel and baby’ fabric. You can find it here.