June 2014

The term ended with a flurry of activity with many projects being completed.P1040773Tuesday finishes a wrap woven in a loopy mohair and fine wool.

P1040774Pauline finishes another scarf. The ends still have to be twisted. The yarn used for the weft came from one ball of knitting wool. The ball of commercial wool had four different yarns knotted together. Pauline separated these as used them as separate stripes.

P1040777Isobel finishes a colour and structure sample.

P1040778Bev finishes a length of plain weave. She intends making placements with embroidered hand worked hems.

P1040775A new loom has been donated to Sturt. Currently the countermarche loom has only 4 shafts. There is space for twelve. A group project will be first woven commencing at the start of next term. Thanks go to the Moffett family for this very generous donation.

At the end of term, I had a few days at home. Some English relatives visited. We spent a stunning day at Stradbroke Island. You will just have to believe that we saw a very spectacular display by a pod of Humpback whales. I was so enthralled that I forgot to photograph.


Then there was the highlight of the month: Complex Weavers Seminars. They are held every two years in various locations, usually in the USA. This year they were held in Tacoma in the Hotel Murano. The Hotel had displays of glass on every floor and in public spaces. This was located in the foyer.

P1040924Weavers come from all over the world to attend. The lectures were informative. I heard great discussion from weavers as they gathered after each session, no matter what seminar they had attended. The response across the board was very positive. The fashion parade and off the runway show provided opportunity for weavers to show their work in a very informal setting while the travelling exhibition  hosted by CW, Complexity was also on display. It will next be shown in conjunction with Convergence. There was opportunity to attend study group meetings. I presented two seminars: East Meets West and Ties: Functional, Decorative and Unconventional. I was delighted with the response.  For me, the real highlight was the opportunity to catch up with friends and colleagues and have great discussions on all manner of topics. This years seminars were fantastic. In two years time they will be on again. The word is that they will be somewhere in between Detroit and Chicago. I can hardly wait! I don’t have many images but here are a few. Over the next weeks I’m sure some will appear on the Complex Weavers web site and in the magazine. http://www.complex-weavers.org

P1040915An attempt was made to officially record the attendees. The official photographer stood at the bottom of the grand staircase while everyone crowded on the stairs. There were just too many to fit. I was at the top looking down and only caught a fraction of the crowd.


P1050022 (600 x 450)Judith Krone and I completed another challenge. The theme for this year was  set at the last Seminars, two years ago, and was “black and white stripes”. We each wound a warp of two scarves in 2/20 silk. Last year we exchanged the warps and then had a year to weave the challenge. We could do whatever we wanted. Judith chose to do some traditional shibori after she had woven the scarves. She gained a very unexpected but delightful effect caused by the separation of the black dye. The front and back of the scarf are totally different. I chose to weave mine in a plaited twill with woven shibori. Mine also provided an unexpected result. The dye used for the black stripe had an acid base while I also dyed it with a soda ash (alkaline) procion. When discharged the dyes were removed at different rates. I decided that I would leave in the pleats even though the dye pattern/effect is less noticeable. At the time I had great difficulty in deciding whether to iron them out or leave them in. They will drop out over time as silk will not hold permanent pleats. We had a bit of fun presenting the Challenge in the fashion parade.


Mt Rainier was on show each day. This is the view from my room.

P1040933Post Seminars was the opportunity to go on a tour to see the work of Dr Bateman. Firstly there was the collection of some briads and woven textiles inspired by South American textiles. The Museum had brought out some of their collection. Then onto the Seattle Guild who have several binders of his work. It is amazing to consider how the quantity of sampling he did in his retirement.

P1040951The binders include drafts based on his records followed by the samples he wove.


Following the Seminars, I had some time out driving through the Rockies with two friends. The discussion started at the Seminars continued in spectacular scenery.



P1040962Hope, a town where we stayed, had  very interesting sculptures created by artists wielding chain saws.

P1040968An interesting sign? It made us smile.

P1040993Then in the terminal at Calgary I found this. It was the start of the Stampede. The sculpture is made from 500kg of pure chocolate!

Onto Vancouver:

P1050004I have followed the progress of Maiwa for many years. www.maiwa.com. Of course I would make the effort to go there: to look, to shop and to say I’ve been there.

P1050003A visit to Van Dusen Botanical Gardens where as well as seeing a beautiful garden, I found squid swimming in the tall grasses.P1050009The trip concluded with a workshop with the Richmond Guild with a workshop; Recycle! They brough along a very interesting collection of “stuff” to explore structure and design approaches.





2 Responses to June 2014

  1. Trood says:

    What a comprehensive blog! thanks for sharing it with us. Am most impressed with the look of the looms at Sturt – so different to the old days! And looking forward to catching up with you at Warwick qld tomorrow….

  2. Helen Halpin says:

    thanks for the great blog Kay – I found your road sign interesting as I work in the Traffic section at the Council – have sent a copy to some of the traffic engineers! See you next month. Helen xxx

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