Monday, April 28, 2014

Ploughing on

I seem to be averaging four and a half hours a day before I have to stop.  And the korowai is growing slowly. I am pleased with it as an exercise in making a korowai without feathers. It is very tempting to put at least a collar of feathers on it but that would defeat the purpose. Some people are allergic to feathers, or don't like the idea of birds dying for their cloak or maybe they want to take it overseas and don't want to lose it at customs anyway I want to make something beautiful for them. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Taniko finished

Another four hours as seen the finish of the taniko at last. 

However there was a few mistakes that needed attention. 

Here you can see a white dot out of place and a blue space where a white should be. I noticed it on the following row so decided to continue and fix it later. I do this by running the right colour along the back with a big eyed needle, bringing it to the front and working over the 'stitch' like you would tapestry i.e.  on the diagonal. 

You can hardly notice at all when it is done. 

So now it's on to the body. 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Nearly there

5 hours work today. 13 rows and sore shoulders and I've had enough today. 

I'm starting to think about the next part. I am thinking about a very plain korowai with just tags of blue wool all over it. We'll see what seems right. 

Another day another few rows

I have done half the pattern now. I had to undo one row as I had not done the pattern correctly. But that wasn't too bad. 3 hours today. 

Sunday, April 20, 2014

On the way again

2 rows back and 7 forward. The pattern is looking much better now.  I forgot to time today but say 1 hour to fix the pattern, 1 to remove rows, and 3 to weave the 7 rows and that makes 5 hours today. 


Yesterday I had a sinking feeling as I realised my star was going to look flattened and decided that I had to fix it. Near enough is not good enough at this stage. So this morning I went to work on the computer again. Firstly I measured how many stitches and rows I was doing per cm. I counted these over 20 cm widthways and I only had 3 cm height ways. (This should have been done on a trial bit like a tension square in knitting as I was using different yarn and string from the last time I used this pattern.)  Then I calculated how many cm per stitch. This worked out at 0.25 cm per row height and 0.51cm per column width. Now I could enter these into the row height and column width of my spreadsheet. And this is what my star would have looked like if I had carried on. 

So now I added rows and adjusted the star so it looked better. 

I only have to undo two rows of work to fix the problem. I am glad to have fixed this and at the same time I have fixed the end where I had to adjust the pattern on my spreadsheet from a 260 string pattern to the 250 strings I actually had. I had already adjusted for this on my paper pattern by cutting and sellotaping. 
Now I am ready to take out the last two rows. And try to do this without cutting yarn in other rows. Then I am back on track. The taniko will be a bit deeper than it was but that is good as I wanted a deep taniko at the bottom. 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easter Sunday.

Happy Easter to everyone. May the blessings of the season be with you. 

Three quarters of an hour of work today and two rows finished. 

I think it might be a bit of a squashed star but I'm committed now. 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Tuesday weaving group

It was great to get back to the weaving group. Such a lot of work done while I was away. 

Elaine had finished her child's cloak made of goose feathers and eyelash yarn.  We had a new weaver join our group. Don't think he'll make much. 

Day three Matariki korowai

4 and 1/2 hours and my shoulders hurt. But 9 rows down today. I can start to see the pattern coming. 

Time to do something else for the rest of the day. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Day two of the Matariki korowai

It took two hours on the computer to get my pattern right. And that was based on one I had already done, and still I did it wrongly doing it for 260 strings instead of 250. So a bit of cutting and sellotaping later and I am happy with it. This afternoon I managed two more hours and got 4 rows done on my taniko. Now it's Easter. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Starting again

I still have not been able to get the silver yarn for my taniko so I'm putting that one aside for now. I made a little one to get my hand back in but I am not very happy with it. 

Anyway I have started another big korowai which I am thinking to do with just a big taniko on the bottom, tags in the body and a small taniko at the top. We will see how that pans out. It will be different without feathers but some people can't cope with feathers do someone might be interested in it. 
This picture shows my messy work room with the set aside bundle behind my newly cast on whenu. It will be 260 whenu wide of a thin string used double. 

I have also started a Facebook page for korowai weaving. I hope it works too. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Monday at Whiri Aroha

Today I am in Auckland. We have had two weeks in Sydney visiting family and now have one week in Auckland. So today I visited my weaving home - Whiri Aroha - at the Papakura marae. It was lovely to see the old faces and meet new ones. And I always learn new things.
Lesson 1: always listen to your elders. I have been weaving the new string double as it is a lot quicker but when I saw Ma's work using it as a single whenu I was very impressed by the delicacy of it. 

I am keen to get home and do the next korowai singly too. I will try a big one and see if it is stable enough. 

Lesson 2: Don't be afraid of different colours. I really liked the blue colours Ma was doing in her taniko. Also we have always steered clear of using coloured feathers as the dye can run when moistened.  But when you dye fabric you use salt to set the dye. So when you wash the coloured feathers try using lots of salt in the water. I must give this a go as I was gifted some dyed red feathers. 

Lesson 3:
Try new things in weaving, try to improve,and meet with other weavers if you can. It was so lovely and inspiring to see what everyone was doing. 

Betty showed me how to make earrings with 7 whenu. As soon as I am home I must have a go.
 It was sad, though, to hear of ones who had passed away since I was there last. 
I really want to thank this group for their love, acceptance, teaching and inspiration.