Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Pheasant and Jute

Finished the jute Arapaki this week, and devised a new top finish which I quite like.  I was trying to work out how the old cloaks I have seen were finished. I'm not sure if I have discovered exactly what they did but I quite like this anyway.
So this is made of jute, with pheasant feathers. It has poka (shaping) and a plaited top edge with a fringe. There are black and red rope highlights.  

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Jute project 2

A few more days, a few more rows.  I have completed the shaping and hopefully the pattern is still going to work out.

In another row or two I will start the final full feather row and the do the top plait. It will be interesting to see what difference the shaping makes.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Jute project

I am still going with my weaving of the jute project. I have two sets in of a possible four. I think I will start some shaping soon as that is what this project is designed to learn.

However this next picture will show you why is taking so long. I have been busy for two of my granddaughters. 

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Coeliac Disease

Unfortunately I have coeliac disease which means I have to have a strictly gluten free diet for life. This means nothing made with wheat, oats, rye or barley. It is surprising what innocent things contain these things, things you would never expect like salad dressings and soy sauce.  As I am very sensitive I have to be extremely careful or I can very quickly have a really bad bout of vomiting and extreme weakness.
 I bring this up in this blog because I have just had another episode brought on by a salad I was told was gluten free,  by people who should know, which unfortunately wasn't.  It was just as well I got home within two hours of eating it as I was very sick soon afterwards.
So for those of you who don't know about coeliac disease or those who think it is just a fad and not to worry, it is definitely something to be aware of. For some people out there it may just be a fad diet but for coeliacs it is a question of life or suffering.
So if I come to your area to teach weaving please do not be offended if I say I can't eat the food you have lovingly prepared. I am quite happy eating what I have brought and others eating your wonderful food.  I love the smells of good food even if I can't always eat it.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

New project

My next project is an Arapaki inspired by an old cloak seen in the Masterton museum.

The original

My effort.  I started this last week and have got on quite well despite having to unpull a bit. The twisted wool bit is interesting especially as it is an old idea.  I have seen it on very old cloaks,  however it has been revived.   I still haven't quite got the finishing of a small bit of this twisting satisfactory yet though. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


Elaine, one of our Ocean View Weavers,  makes lovely outfits for dolls.  They are mostly for her family although she has sold a few.  She even goes to great trouble shaping the wee dress.

Well done Elaine

Friday, June 5, 2015

Finished school cloak

I have finished the flicking feather korowai.  This korowai was done to learn different things.

1. Using the new thick icb string. I have found this string nice to work with however I tended to do slightly wider rows which meant I had to do a feather row every row because of the curly nature of the feathers. Whether this means extra work I haven't quite worked out. The feathers were mostly ok separated by three plain whenu although sometimes I used only two between. I think it will be good for a quick cloak.

2. Using the plain chicken string feathers and using them flicked up. This worked surprisingly well. The feather bundles need to be made well but look quite nice altogether.

3. Using a brown cord twining down for an edging.  I have often seen this on old korowai but not really done it before. Worked well.

4. Doing the poka (shaping). I have never quite got the hang of why the shaping is done where it is but had another go on this cloak.  Being thicker string and wider rows I couldn't follow Diggeress' s instructions in her book 'Weaving a kakahu' to the letter but hope I have it OK. What surprised me seeing a lot of old (and new) cloaks was that the shaping was very subtle and didn't really seem to stand out much.  However I think this feels better to wear than a straight one so will do this in future.  I think a bit more study on this would help though.

5. Using a plait finish with a close cropped whenu ending. I am not so happy with this. I think I need to look into this type of top more. It may work better with finer string.