Thursday, December 31, 2015

New year's greetings

A new year and new adventures.

 But the finish of the old has brought the finish of the Masterton museum Arapaki.

I have really enjoyed using the jute string especially this fine stuff. The top has several rows of Mawhitiwhiti (crossed warps) and a plaited top turnover. There are several plain rows at the back before another turning row so that there are no strings loose at the back. The kereru feathers are not the best to work with but that was what the original one had. I tried to makeep this Arapaki along the lines of one they showed me in the museum. I have changed it a bit so it is not a real copy. Here is the one I saw.

I do hope they accept this gift and it gets used occasionally. 

May you all have a wonderful year ahead. 

Monday, December 21, 2015

Masterton museum arapaki

I have finally got back to doing the Kereru Arapaki for the Masterton museum gift. It's coming on slowly. This time I thought I would try a different way of doing the shaping. I like trying different things on cloaks as I learn things by trying them out.

I have done the shaping before from the middle ie short rows that cover the middle of the row and subsequent short rows get wider towards the edges.  But this time I tried the other way round, which I had seen on some old cloaks in the Museums.
The first short row is wide and the next starts in a bit further.

It will be interesting to see what difference this makes to the feel of the cloak on your shoulders.

I need to get it finished but will have to wait till after Christmas now. It really seems to be an 'on again off again' piece of work.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015


After nearly 40 hours work I have finished this Arapaki (shoulder cape). I am happy with it. I hope the recipient is too. The shaping has made it less rectangular but it feels right and should sit well.

 The storage of Korowai is a difficult question that I haven't found a satisfactory answer to yet. However one of the ways the museum uses for storing their old cloaks is by suspending them rolled up on padded poles. As this cloak is smooth with all the feathers lying down I thought I would try this method to send the cloak away. So I padded a pole with a bit of stuffing and the rolled the cloak on it in acid free paper. Then made some polystyrene ends to suspend the pole on in the box.
I'll get some more bubble wrap and another box before sending it off but we are nearly there.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Top finishes

We decided on a combination. Black/brown twist with cream aho in the mawhitiwhiti. Just a bit more to do. Nearly finished.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Finishing ideas for commission

I have been thinking about what to do at the top of the commission cloak. Trying out ideas by starting the rows.
Firstly just plain. Well sort of plain with the aho cotton (warp) being the same colour as the whenu (weft). The mawhitiwhiti is whale's tail pattern.

Then I tried the twist in brown/orange and black with black aho. 

Now I am wondering if the twist with plain aho might be better. Anybody got any comments? The twist takes a lot of effort but is effective. Is an old technique I have seen on cloaks in museums.