Saturday, 18 September 2010

Starting the Cloth to Cloth Workshop

I want to share what I've been doing in the Cloth to Cloth workshop with Jude Hill which started this week.  We have a private blog for the class but you can get an idea of the exciting and innovative work Jude does by looking at her Spirit Cloth blog.
I read through all the class notes and the first lesson in bed last night and watched the videos again.  Then I tried to sleep.  Even though I was feeling shattered my brain was full of ideas and plans for cloth weaving.  I suppose it would have been a good idea to get up, get wrapped in a cosy dressing gown and do a little bit of cloth-making (I could have included it in my Friday Night Sew-In) but as it was dark and cold I really thought trying to sleep was my best option!
Anyway, this morning I made a start.  I have to say this is way, way, way out of my comfort zone.  Jude is encouraging us to recycle fabrics, to tear and rip, to leave gaps, to mix fabric types, weights and styles.  It's almost too much for my controlling brain.
I rummaged in my scraps basket and decided to start with some pieces leftover from a jellyroll.  These are all cotton, colour-coordinated and therefore not too challenging and a good way to get to grips with the cloth weaving technique.  This is what I did:
The weaving is pinned on a base of muslin and I'm now thinking about stitching and embellishing and particularly using all those little frames the weaving has created.
I then decided I was up to a bit of ripping!  I would make a very small cloth, with some real scraps.  The first piece I ripped stretched and twisted.  What did I do?  I ironed it!  Oh for goodness sake Lis!  I have a few frayed edges in this little piece and after pinning it I enjoyed stitching in in a fairly random way.  Again I want to add to those little frames.  I'm not sure about the places where I have longer frames with the same fabric in the warp and weft, they'll be an extra element to the finished cloth.
In the spirit of recycling DH has sorted me out some of his old shirts.  I had asked for them because Jude suggested they are good for backing fabric, being used and soft.  I'm thinking I will use them to weave.  I have a mixture of fabrics, including cotton and silk but a limited colour palette (the colours Al likes of course) and I'm imagining a treasure box of a collection from the beach in all those greys, blues and turquoises.  Shells, seaweed, feathers and foam, waves and wind blowing though the woven cloth.  Oh, I feel all poetic! I'll see what occurs after I've had a lie down in a darkened room, this can't be happening to me.


  1. you did a great job with the weaving and color choices. i favor the first one. i iron all my ripped fabric, but carefully so they don't stretch out.

  2. Those samples look good. It is difficult to go casual and loosen up on a technique like that when you've also done Japanese techniques which are more controlled. Have fun with the weaving.

  3. Looks like fun! I would've pressed too, lol

  4. Looking forward to following this challenge and seeing where it takes you :-) It is good to step outside our comfort zone for a new take on our creativity xx

  5. I had to laugh about the shirts, I had asked H to clean out his closets and take everything straight to the trunk of the car, for a trip to Goodwill. Guess who walked out there at 6 am and pulled all the cotton shirts out of the box!
    Am enjoying this class so much...will watch your creations as they come.

  6. I'm after his ties too now CCK, don't tell him!!

  7. I love what you've got going here. The pieces have a lovely feel to them. I love Jude's work - it's so organic. I'm interested to see more of your work as you progress through the class. Have fun with it!


I really appreciate your lovely comments, ideas and opinions, they make my day. Thank you for visiting Piece'n'Peace,
hugs, Lis x