Monday, May 31, 2010

white on white

I have been commissioned by a Chicago architect to weave a set of six pillow faces, white on white. "...I have the constraints of all white and no image, so I know it is not your signature work, but I do want the weave to have character," he wrote. I have had so much fun! luxury yarns which I ordinarily don't employ in wall hangings, (bamboo, silk/merino, and linen on worsted wool) and the subtlety and restraint of expression with out resorting to color, such a nice change of pace.

Three have brocaded faces based on my Alders weaving of a few posts ago (we are calling it the Birch design); the other three are all over textural weaves. Woven in my signature 3 harness twill with simple variations in weight and treadling, they have been a pleasure to weave.

Friday, May 14, 2010


It's May, which in my corner of Utopia means peonies. We have the great good fortune of living on the corner of Fragrant Farms, who grow peonies for market -- blooms and plants to ship around the country. So on one side of my cabin are corn or soy fields, and the other side, acres of peonies. In May, they are ablaze and the colors and scents are staggering. We are repeatedly invited by Mrs Jane Owen, the owner of this glory, to pick as many full blown blooms as we please (the buds are shipped out, the full blooms are past that) and so the house, as I write this, is delicious with the un-reproducible scent of pure peony. Bouquets everywhere. When I say un-reproducible, I so wish that you could have peony-in-a-bottle for November, but of course that would make it less sublime when May rolled around again.

As I am a rather pathetic photographer, I have only shown you the deep pink peonies as the white ones don't perform so well for my camera. So just as there are fields of this magenta, there are other blocks of palest pink, white, and candy pink. Heaven.