The weaving book is only two days away but I can’t help but sit down for a brief session today. It’s a little bit addictive. It has occurred to me today whilst sitting at a seventies bureau, sipping coffee from a seventies mug and weaving a wall hanging in neutral tones (not to mention a few seventies tracks on in the background) that I have stepped back in time! Remind me to buy a cheese plant as a finishing touch for our bedroom!
I was born in 69 so I can remember having cheese plants. I also have fond memories of a very cuddly superchunky long belted cardigan my Mum wore. I thought she was far more stylish and glamorous than most other Mums and looking back I was right. She would have definitely been called a yummy mummy in these times. There was a lot of texture in household furnishings too. When we were very small we had a sofa in off white which was somewhere between cordrouy and boucle, next to a large deep pile off white rug which we spent some considerable time lying on, just because. A bit later we had a hessian textured wallpaper. It was obviously a very tactile era.
I can’t tell you how much faff that little grey wedge shape was! I’ve since discovered that I could have butted shapes up like this with the need for front and back warps but with closer warps instead. That way the wool kind of bridges the gap. That might be applicable when I set up the vintage loom. For now though I am really pleased with the way the colours meet without any gaps. It was a relief to get back to doing a full width stripe after that. With the small amount of flecked grey yarn I had I decided to make it up as I went along and wrapped it round every other warp to create a sort of lump. I also used the yarn doubled up so it’s turned out a little bit uneven which I quite like. I have no idea what colour or shape or texture I am going to do next. I am kicking myself for throwing out a selection of superchunky yarn leftovers which I thought would have no use whatsoever. Doh!
The temperature has improved enormously today. There was even sunshine! The dogs swam very gracefully, Riley reaching the island in the middle of the lake where the duck nests are located. He has a quick sniff round and plunges back in. It’s a bit strange. I had a Springer when I was in my twenties, called Bertie and he would have brought a dead duck back for me. Not a gift I would have wanted, believe me. He once escaped from my parent’s back garden, trotted into the neighbouring field, gently tapped a cockerel round the head with his paw, which unfortunately broke its neck and then came casually trotting back, without the bird thank goodness! Come to think of it there were quite a few neighbours who were glad not to have the five a.m. wake up call after that. Bertie eventually showed promise as a proper working dog and my partner at the time trained him, I’ve never seen a dog so happy, he was simply doing what the breed was designed to do. It broke my heart but it was kinder to let him stay working on that estate in the New Forest than have him living with me in Oxford.
Sitting on the lakeside bench it did occur to me (daydreaming about weaving!) that I could use the colours of the lake and countryside for a future wall hanging. It’s definitely a favourite spot and I’ve photographed it quite a lot, mostly with the dogs in the water at the time. It changes colour dramatically according to season, and one side has a huge area of bullrushes so there’s plenty of colour and texture inspiration.
It’s the first day of half term here. J is suffering from the nastiest hacking cough. I’ve dosed him up with everything imaginable. He’s drinking oj for vitamins and iced water and ice cream to soothe his throat, as well as the usual cough mixture and paracetamol for his temperature. He might be sixteen now but as his Mother I am feeling just the same as if he were four years old again and had some kind of cold or injury and wishing I could take it on instead. He’s a trooper though, he isn’t complaining, he just looks and sounds awful. Roll on Spring!