Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Poi taaniko

I have been discovering poi taaniko. These are not something I've done before so I'm trying to nut it out.   I have made crochet balls before so I think the same increasing  process might work.

I have used 3 long strings to start. Cross them over each other and work one round of taaniko.

Then add three bent strings as below.   I found tying a knot around the last string in the round helps to identify the end of a round. There is one stitch between each addition.   Go from 6 stitches to twelve. Stitch one round adding in then one extra round

 The second add in of strings has two stitches between the additions. Go from 12 stitches to 18.

Each adding in round should be on top of the last addition and should increase by 6.
Keep a look out for that end of round knot.

I increased from 6 12,18,24 30,36,42 on one smaller poi and up to 70 on the bigger one.
The inside shows the increases on top of one another.

This poi started with six  strings tied together.  The tuft could be outside or inside.

Once all the additions are made just keep going round and round.  This is where I did the pattern. 

Then to complete the poi you decrease by dropping the strings and stuffing them inside in the same pattern as the increases were done. I needed to fudge this with a few extra plain rounds.

As I said, I am only just figuring this out.  So if you have any ideas and extra tips please add to this post. 

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Bill's Weka cloak

I started Bill's weka cloak before my surgery.  The weka feathers had been gifted to him from some whanau on the Chathams.  I find weka very wasteful with lots of feathers that can't be used, so it takes a lot of sorting through.  However I got a lot of bundles made despite my sore arm.
Surgery in May put me out of action for a few months.  However I kept myself sane by doing embroidery with my left hand.

But as my arm improved I was able to work on it again and finally by the end of October I finished his cloak.

I was unable to handle the big cloak when I was able to go back to weaving group so I took along this other project.  It is a bag to hold a small casket.  I started on the bottom using an under and over weaving technique working row by row.

Now I am looking forward to the next thing on my list.  Another Arapaki I think.

2018 was a very busy year.  Lots of kakahu got made and lots of things were learned and used.

A peacock arapaki made early in the year.

A small arapaki in which I learned how to do the taaniko within the cloak.  I used this technique on Paula's cloak.  Much of my learning is trial and error which is why I often do a trial piece first before something important.

 This arapaki was an extension of a small cloak I had made years ago. The extension process helped me with the Hargest cloak. Unfortunately I haven't got a finished photo of this one.

Paula's cloak.

Bill's pukeko cloak finished in August

The Hargest Cloak

In August I tore a tendon in my right shoulder but this wasn't diagnosed till the end of the year.  It wasn't till 2019 that surgery was decided upon and booked in for the end of May.  Meantime I had a little time to finish a few orders.

Another Peacock cloak

Harriet's cloak.  This was great fun because Harriet and I had a real collaboration on this.  We had some professional photos taken.

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Are you waiting to a reply to your email?

I endeavour to reply promptly to all emails however sometimes things get missed and emails occasionally go astray. So if you haven't received a response to an email try sending it again or send me a Facebook message.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Starting Bill's Pukeko Cliak

It's been a busy May but at last I've finished Paula's panelled cloak. She was pleased with it and it looked good on her. 

I've started extending another small cloak for a client and that seems to be going well. I'll be able to undo the top part and put taaniko in for her when I get up to there. I have extended it twice now and I'm sure it will be a good size now.

And I've started Bill's pukeko Kakahu. I don't really like using pukeko but this seems to be going ok. One week in to June and nearly 30 cm  done. I'm only getting about one feather row per pelt so many thanks to feathergirl.co.nz for selling the Pukeko pelts. Even though he doesn't want a pattern the blue and black feathers are making a nice random spread.

And, fourthly, a start has been made on the James Hargest College Kakahu. This is being done by people learning to weave under my supervision. We have had one planning day and two work days so far. I am very pleased by their progress. It is being done in 7 panels so more people can work on it at one time. There will be feather, mawhitiwhiti and taaniko panels. I have designed some taaniko panels for them and we'll see what they like next Tuesday when we have a session during school time.

Southland REAP are going to run a beginners class for me in Wyndham in September if any one from there is interested. And we have our usual group meetings at Ocean View on the first Saturday and first and third tuesdays of the month. All welcome.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Facebook post put on blog at last.

April already. Where has this year gone. Still I have finished the peacock arapaki and it's ready for Ella.
Also the Rooster arapaki is done and extended. It has two rows of shaping as well. Sorting out how to add more whenu on the side of an almost completed piece has helped with adding on to another korowai and also encouraged me to think that the making of a korowai in panels is a possibility. This idea will be very helpful when we do the James Hargest College cloak in collaboration with the teachers and Whanau of the school. I think 7 panels with 4 feathers ones, 2 mawhitiwhiti ones and 1 taaniko panel in the middle will work nicely.
I have extended the korowai for Paula and have now started with the longer rows. You can't really tell where I have joined on. Yippee.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

February and Paula's cloak

February already. We have had our first Saturday weaving and has great time catching up. Now it's back to work in earnest. I need to catch up with Matenga Russell too if anyone knows him. His phone number wasn't working when I rang him.
Paula's cloak is coming on although it takes ages to do the rows when doing the taaniko in the middle. Now that I have done three types of feathers it's looking better.
I have continued with my trial for Paula's and am still learning from it.

 The third one is a shoulder cape of peacock feathers. I do that one when I'm tired of the other two. It's a little easier to transport too.

I have moved my work into a lighter, brighter room in our house. It's lovely to work in.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Fresh start

Sorry I haven't posted for a few months. I've been busy with a death in the family. But now I've started weaving again. Yesterday a few of my weaving pals and I delivered quite a few angel korowai to the hospital. It was interesting hearing how they are used and the other options available to families dealing with little people's deaths. There are other groups like embroiderers making wee garments etc. I hope we all help at a very sad time in people's lives.

But now I have started a new cloak to practice an idea for a friend's new cloak. She wants panels within the  cloak with taaniko patterns. Quite tricky. I'm having to train my brain to weave in both directions. It was done by Rangimarie Hetet and I'm trying to replicate her technique.

It would be easier if I did a whole block of taaniko but I'm trying to work on the angle. And each row is double so forward and back are the same colours.  If anyone has done this and has some suggestions I'm all ears. It looks straightforward till you actually try it. Quite a slow process too, so I think it will take a while to achieve length. 

The other news is that while up north I found two ladies importing string to NZ. One is cotton and I haven't seen it yet to determine quality. The other is jute and I like the look of it. It is already washed and though not as light a colour as I would like it's not as dark as unwashed $2 shop string. It is also a little thicker than the fine string so could be used single. I will have a go soon so I can report on its quality but it looks good.  It's great to see people getting on and doing what I was thinking about but didn't get around to.  

Wishing you all a very Happy Christmas 

Monday, October 2, 2017

Rotorua Nursing School Korowai

Last week I delivered the korowai hihima for the nursing school in Rotorua. I was on a tour of friends and family with my mother for her 90 th birthday. It was the first time she had been on a marae so another new experience for her. After the powhiri and blessing the past students and lecturers of the school tried on the cloak and lots of photos were taken. It was well received, which was a relief. 

Even my niece, Rachel, got to try on the cloak as a past student. We are all so proudof her doing so well in her nursing so I'm glad she got the chance to wear it for a little while. 

Now that's all over I'm having a rest from a lot of weaving until next year. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017


The Pukeko kakahu is all finished.

Ready for you Sandy.

At class on Tuesday Glenda showed us her finished taaniko which looks so good. It was done on the old thick string which fluffs terribly but she has done an absolutely beautiful job of the taaniko with no fluffy white showing through.  Well done Glenda.  Now for the rest of it.

Also I want to point out the little tweak we are sometimes including in our work now. The turning row used as decoration  worked backwards.  You can see that the turns are going in opposite directions on the top and bottom of her taaniko.

This makes an interesting effect when done one after the other too. It takes a bit to get your head around doing it backwards but it is the same method as front wards but starting from the other side. This also means the edges are straight instead of slightly moved sideways as they are when only one turn is done.

We are getting more little korowai done for the hospital and hope to have a pile to take by the end of the year.  These are to commemorate the lost babies - the still borns and early death babies in the maternity hospital. There is another group who make wee woven coffins and knitted woolen wraps. Just hope it helps a little with the grief experienced by the bereft parents. 

Thursday, August 10, 2017


The Pukeko kakahu is coming on well. However I have used up the 15 pelts from feathergirl and it is only 73cm long, 11 cm of that is taaniko. I would like a few more rows of Pukeko but I'll see if I can cadge some from my friends. However it will soon be time to do the black and green for the top which will give more of a tui look to the cloak. There are feathers still on the pelts but they are too small for this project. As well as using the black from the Pukeko I supplemented them with three black rooster pelts from Lyann.

My other project was making an Arapaki cape from one rooster pelt.  It has turned out to measure 115 cm long by 22 cm deep.
So I think if you were doing a longer cloak you might need about 3 or 4 pelts depending on how clever you are at working a pattern with the feathers.

The first weekend in August was spent teaching korowai in Queenstown at Lake Hayes. It was lovely weather, views and people. But to keep me occupied at night I started another little one for the hospital. I have used the fluffy feathers from the bottom of a white and black pelt.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

July's ups and downs

I have kakahu and korowai coming out my ears at the moment.
The Nurses one is nearly done.  The top of it stalled me for quite a while but I think its coming together now.

I still have the back and finishing off to do.

And I'm on to the feathers in Sandy's kakahu. The feathers are Pukeko.  Because of the nature of Pukeko feathers, cloaks I've seen always look a bit on the messy side.  The blue feathers in particular tend to splay out rather than holding together like other types of feathers. Mine is no exception, no matter how careful I am. The colours haven't come out very well in these photos.  I am doing a poutama wahine pattern.

The third thing on the go is an arapaki (shoulder cape) using one rooster pelt.  I thought I needed to sell some more of Lyann's pelts as they are so beautiful and at $30 each they are worth it.  I am doing a design based on the pelt itself with the long feathers in the middle and the more rounded ones at the side.  I think two pelts might make it easier but shall continue with the single one to see what can be done.