Sweet watermelon circle weaving

Here’s a quick little project tutorial so you can weave a super-sweet watermelon decoration.

I’m hanging them on the Christmas Tree this year (Yep, we have a summer Christmas here in lovely New Zealand)

1. Gather your supplies. You will need a Circle weaving loom, small amounts of thread in watermelon red, black, bright green, dark greed and white or very pale pink, some polyester fibre-fill stuffing, tapestry needle and scissors.

2, Set up your circle loom as per instructions and weave a bit of watermelon red. I used a slightly textured cotton viscose knitting yarn that was lying around. I also weave over and under two threads at a time for a little while in the start – this gives a slightly neater and flatter fabric.

3. After a while add one round of black thread but this time go under three threads and over one thread. This will create a few watermelon ‘pips’. Take the black thread to the back of the loom and let it dangle there there as you will need it again soon. Note: if you prefer you can skip steps 3 and four and just embroider a few ‘pips’ with black thread later by hand.

4. Change back to red and weave over and under each thread for another cm or so. Then Repeat steps 3 and four another two or three times. (Weave the black for one round under using an 3 under/1 over pattern and then red over and under for a cm or so.)

5. Weave red until you get very near the edge of the loom. Then weave a few rounds of white, followed by bright green and finally dark green. Finish when you get to the very edge of the loom and you can’t weave any more. Try not to pull too tight as you weave near the edge.

6. Take you weaving off the loom and tuck in any loose ends to the back of the work. Fold in half with the right side facing outwards. Using the dark green thread, begin to sew up a neat seam to join the two halves together. I like to use ‘whip stitch’.

7. Add a little poly-fil stuffing and continue to sew the watermelon closed. Knot securely and weave in your ends.

8 Tadaah! Your summery watermelon is complete. Now you can add a brooch back if you would like to wear it. Or a little loop tie near the top so you can hang it up somewhere. You can also make tiny ones using my smaller loom and then add some felt wool pom-poms and a tassel if you want to get fancy.

Looms are available from my little Etsy or Felt shops. Send me a note with your order if you would like me to put in some watermelon colour yarns in your parcel.

Wishing you a happy weaving day.

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Utilitarian

I was heading towards the end of this indigo blue cotton warp…. but there wasn’t quite enough to weave another scarf…..so I finished it with a set of washcloths.

Soft, simple and useful.

I am sharing my weavers notes here, in case anyone would like to have a go at making something similar. They would make great eco-friendly gifts, especially if teamed up with a nice hand-made soap.

Warp –

  • 3 ply denim cotton.
  • Total of 173 ends (width approx 8.5inches by 1m/1.15yards long – this was the end of a warp).
  • Sett at 20 ends per inch (10’s reed with 2 warp ends per dent).
  • Herringbone threading plan (see diagram below)

Weft –

  • a mixture of 4 ply and 8 ply cotton and linen,
  • woven in a 2/2 Twill (sometimes reversed to weave diamonds)
  • 12-16 picks per inch depending on which weft yarn was used.
  • Each cloth was woven 11-12 inches long on the loom but did shrink a bit when washed.
  • I added a fine plain weave turnover seam at the top and bottom of each washcloth using 2/20’s cotton weft. And a crochet chain tie in one corner to hang them up to dry.

Loom – Four shaft Ashford table loom, with a direct tie up pedal stand. This is the thread up pattern I used.

Denim blue Herringbone washcloths

DIY bird brooch kits

So excited that these are now ready and available in the Etsy shop and at The little Beehive Co-op, Nelson.

Each kit makes 1 pretty embroidered bird brooch and there are 5 designs to choose from.

The kits are designed and made with love in New Zealand and are a special collaboration between Twill Textile Design and Rosemary Horn  – who is an amazingly talented photographic artist, embroiderer and friend.

Ready-to-wear brooches are also available to order.

Tapestry Weaving in March

Weave your own contemporary wall hanging. Using small frame looms, you will explore simple weaving and knotting techniques and have fun with colour, texture and shape.

Sessions will be from 7-9pm every Thursday evening in March (2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd & 30th) and will be held at the Little Beehive Co-op in Nelson. Please plan to come along to as many sessions as you can in order to complete your piece – weaving is slow and steady work 🙂 Each session costs $20 plus a little more for the yarns and materials you use.

Everything will be provided but you’re welcome to bring along any special materials you wish to incorporate in your piece. You might also like to go foraging or beach combing for a strong driftwood stick (or something similar that is about 20cm long) to hang your piece from.

There are only 4 places left, so please book soon.

A5 Heart weaving kit Workshop feb 10th and 11th 2017

 

Learning something new

This week I had a lovely email from a customer. She told me she had been using the little circle looms to make ‘Tenerife Lace’. 

I was very intrigued as I’d never heard of this before. So I spent a little while with Google and having a go at weaving. It’s quite fascinating so thank you KO for pointing me in this new direction. 

  

   
I need to practice my knots but here is my first test of this technique.   

It’s pretty rough but I think Tenerife Lace might make a nice snowflake decoration or cup coaster.  And wouldn’t it look amazing if lots of these round motifs were joined up to make a lacy fabric!

 I think I will try it again but use a crisp cotton or linen thread instead. Or maybe some bright colours to make this very traditional technique look more contemporary. 

If anyone else would like to have a try, here are the two online resources I’ve been following to get me started…..

https://www.cs.arizona.edu/patterns/weaving/books/archive_012.pdf

And

https://archive.org/stream/teneriffelacewor00thde#page/6/mode/1up

Hope you have a lovely weekend. 

On the looms…..

(Oops. I have now edited this post to include the photos that should have been in it! my apologies…..)

The studio has been really busy over the last couple of months. Amongst other things, I’ve made a custom guitar strap, some cloth of hand spun wedding dress strips, some slightly Art Deco geometric wall pieces and a few little bookmarks.

Guitar strap yarn wrap and weaving  guitar strapwedding dress yarn weaving IMG_3166 prep for weavinghandwoven bookmarks

The spinning wheel has been busy too, making threads from merino/silk and also from some lovely wool from B’s sheep, whose names are ‘white spot’ and ‘bad hair day’.

twill textiles handspun

….and off the loom, possible new work is emerging and developing inside a tiny sketchbook.

new sketchbook project

The Wednesday weaving students have been really busy too with beautiful scarves, table mats, rugs, tapestries and tea towels.

Student work in prgress term 2 2015

Phew! time for a little break to recharge the batteries. Weaving class will begin again at the end of July. Ka kite.