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Convergence Reflections

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Events, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Last week was a wonderful whirlwind of meeting people, selling looms and soaking in the merriment that is HGA’s Convergence.

For me, the best part was meeting people. From famous tapestry weaver’s like Janet Austin, people we’ve been in touch with for years but have never met like fabulous weaver/teachers Rebecca Mezoff and Janette Meetze, some  of the great people from the American Tapestry Alliance (seriously, what an amazing group), some of our retailers and even customers we’ve talked with many times but never had faces to put to names. I also got to spend a lot of time with my wonderful mother (you may know her as Claudia) and my second-mom Miss Joni Parker-Roach of NOA Gallery, which was pretty awesome.

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Meeting the fabulous Rebecca Mezoff, and teaching Claudia & Rebecca what “photo bombing” is. 

We got to see a fascinating, eclectic small format tapestry show put on by the American Tapestry Alliance and another  show in the same building by TWINE (Tapestry Weavers in New England). Being brought up in the world of tapestry this probably makes sense, but I enjoy seeing tapestries at galleries and museums more than any other art form. You can sit there for 30 minutes and stare at one tapestry and be totally fascinated.

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At the show we got to introduce our new Spencer Power Treadle, which was a huge hit. I had a great time showing people how it works.

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Here’s our booth, with the new treadle all set up (left). 

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In the picture you can see the security we needed there for crowd control! 

In honor of Mirrix’s 18th birthday (which we were celebrating), we had a drawing to win a Mini-Mirrix. It was a huge draw to our booth, as was the birthday chocolate we were giving away. Above is a photo of the drawing. We had John Marshall, known for his antique and original kimonos and metallic threads -he’s the guy we buy the gold from- (who had the booth across the aisle) choose the winner from almost 300 names. The winner was named Ginny and was from NH! She had actually taken Rebecca’s tapestry class at the show, so it was a great fit! Congratulations again, Ginny!

claudia weaving

Thank you to everyone who made this show such a success. The people at HGA were dedicated, helpful and even managed to give us hugs and smile on always-crazy moving-out day. The teachers and weavers were amazing. The people there were amazing. It was a great show! Until next time!

-Elena

Inspiration

Posted on by Janna Maria Vallee / Posted in Inspiration, Social Market for a Mirrix 2014, Tapestry Weaving | 1 Comment

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Marcel Marois is a tapestry weaver whose work I’ve admired for years.  I just love the fact that they begin as watercolor paintings, and every time I think about his work I try to work out in my head how he blends his colors.  With my amateur knowledge I’ve determined there must be a lot of color blending on the bobbin.  What do you think?  Isn’t this fantastic?  Do you have any insight into his technique?

On my end, this week I’ve been making natural dye print samples for a workshop I’m giving which begins this Tuesday.  I’ve always wanted to create a watercolor effect with dyes on fabric and I’m close to achieving what has been in my imagination all these years.  I can see myself weaving a tapestry based on these prints too.  Below are logwood and brazilwood stenciled onto charmeuse.  For more photos and technical detail go here to see my blog post about it.

Janna Maria Vallee

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Marcel Marois photos via http://www.paperblog.fr

Secret Project 1st Panel

Posted on by Christina Neit / Posted in Social Market for a Mirrix 2014 | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Today I finished the first panel of 4. In all it probably took 3-4 days to complete. Now I have to make 3 more ;) I am hoping to have this secret project ready for reveal in 2 weeks, so bear with me as I go through the process. I promise you are all going to love the finished piece.

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I opted for the taped ends on this project as it will suit me best, as you will see in the end. The panel measure 8 1/4″ x 3 3/4″ with the 9 Delica colors.

Happiness in Readiness

Posted on by Julia Hecht / Posted in Social Market for a Mirrix 2014 | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments
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Cubist’s Delight Off the Loom

The weaving is complete!  Now “thread management” begins.  Clearly there’s a lot to do.  It is been a busy week for me with my store and with my kids. So, once again, my artistic life has been “squeezed” in when time allows.  On a personal note, lately I’ve felt that there is never enough time, for ANYTHING.  It is like a mantra I hear myself saying throughout the day, everyday.  I realize it has become a theme that now characterizes my life.   I’ve decided I am done with that. I believe wholeheartedly in change.  Yet, I do resist and procrastinate.  Nonetheless I can see that I am just fed up with what I’ve been feeling.  I am ready!  I believe that I can improve the quality of my life and lessen the sense of “lack of time” by getting myself more organized and being more efficient with my energy and how I live day to day. Towards this end, I’ve spent the entire day cleaning out my closet and drawers.  It is a start for living with less chaos and more peace.  Like these dangling threads that require attention, I still have a lot of organizing ahead of me.  However, I am optimistic that one day at a time, I am going to make the changes I need.

Wishing you all the happiness in readiness that comes just when you feel FED UP!

Julia L. Hecht

Poppyfield Bead Company

poppybeads.com

Small Progress

Posted on by Christina Neit / Posted in Social Market for a Mirrix 2014 | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Here it is the middle of the night. I haven’t had lots of time this past week to work on the surprise piece I am working I have started, but I will have lots of time in a few more days and it is going to be all about this project! I have a half a panel done so far. It seems to take me about a day and a half for half a panel. It was moving slower than I had anticipated the 2 solid days I worked on it. I am still excited though because this is going to be different. Here is what I have so far. The threads hanging on the left are the start and finish threads. I usually weave them in when I am all done looming a piece.

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I have been also plotting and planning my next 2 pieces of loomwork and have purchased the proper items I will be working with. I am pretty excited about them as well! I will be heavily back into this piece in one more day. :D

Summertime natural dyeing

Posted on by Janna Maria Vallee / Posted in Social Market for a Mirrix 2014, Tapestry Weaving | 3 Comments

I had some exciting ideas in mind for my next tapestry but I think I’ve finally settled on doing William Morris’ Strawberry Thieves using naturally dyed yarns.  This week I dyed a bunch of my sample yarns for it.   I have yet to dye the indigo ones, but I think I’ve made a good start.

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From back to front:

walnut with alum and cream of tartar

onion skins with alum at left and walnut with alum and cream of tartar beside it

osage with alum and cream of tartar

brazilwood with alum

osage with alum and iron

logwood with alum and iron

brazilwood with alum and iron

onion skins with alum and cream of tartar at left and onion skins with alum and iron next to it

osage with alum

logwood with alum

logwood with alum and cream of tartar

walnut with alum and iron

brazilwood with alum and cream of tartar

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William Morris’ Strawberry Thieves 1883. Click pic to go to its source

Janna Maria Vallee

HGA Convergence 2014 in Providence, Rhode Island!

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Events | Tagged | Leave a comment

We are counting down the days for this event.  Please see their website for more details: http://www.weavespindye.org/convergence2014.

We thought you might be curious as to what we will be hauling there.  Since we are limited to two cars and one large table once we get there, we have had to make some serious choices.  Of course, we will be bringing looms.  Lots and lots of looms. All shapes and sizes.  And if we run out of the loom you want, there will be a model available to play with and we will ship it to you at no cost.  For those of you who are flying to the event, this might be the best choice for the larger looms.

We will have display stand and one all neatly boxed up. Both will be for sale (the display stand at a discount, of course).

We will have our  yet to be revealed amazing new accessory.  Not telling you.

Hand painted silk galore.  An entire huge basket of it. You get to pick the colors and get increasing discounts for the more you buy.  Like dipping into one of those really big crayon boxes but much, much better.

Gold thread.  Lots of it.

And entire basket full of those great new two hole beads.  Great colors, great shapes, just great.

Buttons.  Of course we’ll have buttons!

A limited number of Mirrix accessories.  But examples will be there if you need to order online.

We won’t have any of our wooden clips.  Sorry, we forgot to have them shipped here.  You’ll have to hit the website for those.

Kits.  Not our full range, but ones you will love.  We will have an entire shelf of them

And did I mention the sari silk ribbon?  We will have an example of this done in Soumak knotting on a loom as well as some finished examples.  You will want to try this.  It’s easy, it’s fail-proof and the product is gorgeous.

I hope I haven’t left anything out.  But you can be sure, you will find equipment and supplies you won’t find anywhere else at the Convergence Marketplace!

 

 

Cubist’s Delight

Posted on by Julia Hecht / Posted in Social Market for a Mirrix 2014 | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

 

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Greetings Weaving Friends!  My foray into increases and decreases continues to advance.  I have one strap complete (see photo to the left).  In addition, I have  successfully added the missing piece of the work to the right side of the body, and it does appear symmetrical.  As it should.  That part was woven down, while the rest of the body is woven up.   It is has been fun to see how to add complexity by increasing and decreasing, with just a little bit of technical “know-how”.   I purchased this pattern as part of a class.  Although, according to the pattern, the assembly includes adding round beads, I’ve decided to stay “cubist” and I plan to  add cube beads.

I’ve got a lot of work left on it before that happens.  But, I am already fantasizing about how I will decorate and assemble the pieces.  As you can see, I did warp with a cream colored thread, and I am happier with the results, compared with the black I used in my sampler. Learning to “lock” my warp threads after removing from the loom was a crucial step in my mastery of the process.  Locking keeps the work stable.  I had to weave in many of the threads and that is quite time consuming.  I cannot imagine locking and weaving in the 60 threads x2 (top and bottom) that I will do, when I remove the body from the loom.

 

Using Silamide A thread

photo 1gave me a lot of room to weave in.  It is a 2 ply nylon that has minimal to zero stretch.  It is also very thin, so the beadwork did not become distorted by all the buried threads.  The threads that remain will be used to connect the strap to the body and to a clasp.  And now… back to weaving…and then locking…and then burying…and then assembling……….Yippeee!

 

Julia L. Hecht

Poppyfield Bead Company

poppybeads.com

Adventures in Extreme Shag

Posted on by Janna Maria Vallee / Posted in Social Market for a Mirrix 2014, Tapestry Weaving, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

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Can you guess what this is?  Believe it or not this is the tapestry that I shared a few weeks back.  I’ve added this extreme shag in 100% silk that I hand painted with acid dyes.  I am going to give it a hair cut and wanted to have it done that by now, but I’m waiting for my hair-stylist brother to help with that part (yes, seriously).  It was so much work to tie this silk on on two at a time, that I dare not mess it up now.  So, for now it remains looking like some strange jelly fish.

Janna Maria Vallee

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