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Simple Beaded Bracelet

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Bead Weaving, Products, Projects | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

I wanted to make a simple, quick beaded bracelet. I haven’t woven beads in a while because lately I’ve been kind of obsessed with hand-painted silk bracelets and small tapestries. But the beads started calling.

Sometimes I just really crave simple: simple materials, simple design, but great colors. So I wanted this bracelet to be just that.

I decided I wanted to use the same clasp I’ve been using for the hand-painted silk bracelets. I figured out that I needed to use either 11/0 Delica or 15/0 beads in order for the bracelet to fit correctly into the clasp (obviously, smaller beads would work but that’s my limit!).

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It’s time to GO BIG!

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Deals, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

gobigTHIS SALE HAS ENDED

Are you ready to GO BIG?

For FOUR days only (Wednesday August 5th – Saturday August 8th) we are offering a brand new basic tapestry loom package with any loom 22″ or larger for up to $80 (actually, $81) off. That’s a discount of 15% off the retail price of each loom.

This package comes with a loom, heddles, Navajo wool warp, an unweighted tapestry beater and a tapestry needle. All you need is some weft and you are all ready to get started weaving.

Take advantage of the price while you can!

Click here to purchase this amazing package!

Please take the time to read the terms and conditions below

Terms & Conditions:
Cannot be combined with any other offers
Only one loom package per customer
Mirrix Looms reserves the right to deny, or change any discount
Expires at midnight on August 8th, 2015
Only valid at mirrixlooms.com
This deal is only valid for purchases of this loom package on August 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th, 2015. These discounts CANNOT be applied to orders made before these dates.

Customer Feature: Maureen Kenney

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Bead Weaving, Customer Stories | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

maureen kenneyWhen/how did you first get into bead weaving? What inspired you to begin weaving?
A few years ago, my youngest daughter learned how to inkle weave at a summer arts camp, and it intrigued me to expand my bead work in that direction. She seemed to enjoy it so much, how could I resist?


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5 Tips To Sell Your Work Online

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Ask Elena, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

mobile-payment-2We field a lot of questions every day here at Mirrix Looms. From, “When will my order ship?” to “How do you make this project?” and even questions from customers about how to sell their work.

I  happen to have a bit of expertise regarding this last point and I thought I would share a few tips for artists and crafters looking to sell their work online.

1.) Be visible.

This may seem obvious, but a strong and varied online presence is important to your success selling online. Don’t rely on just one platform to share your work. A website and/or blog is typically the foundation of any online presence. You can use it to tell your story, share your work and even sell. If you choose to sell instead on a site like Etsy or ArtFire, a website or blog is still important to bring customers to your selling page.  You should also maintain a diverse presence on social media sites. Consider creating accounts on Facebook, Ravelry, Weavolution, Pinterest, Twitter and/or Instagram. Remember to not start with more than you can handle, though, as you want to keep these accounts active. A social media account can be a very powerful tool, but only if you use it consistently (more on that in tip five!)  

Looking for a cheap/easy way to get started with a website? Consider an easy sitebuilding program like Squarespace or Weebly. If you’re looking for something free, WordPress and Blogger both have free blog or site options. 


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Customer Feature: Michelle Dixon

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Stories, Tapestry Weaving | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments
michelle dixon: handsHello, my name is Michele Dixon and I’ve been learning to weave tapestry for the last four years.  I actually remember trying to weave tapestry as far back as 1970 on a cardboard loom I made myself. I still have the Leisure Arts books I used to guide me. I didn’t try again until 1975 when I was home with my infant son. I was interested in learning more about Navajo Weaving then so my husband made me a loom. Again, life has a way of not allowing you the time to pursue all of your dreams, so weaving in general was put on hold.
Skip forward to 2009, yep, that long a stretch of time. My husband and I moved to Texas from So. California in 2007 to be near our new granddaughter. I was very fortunate to find a nice group of people interested in weaving. I started taking lessons and learning how to weave cloth. In 2011, my weaving instructor at the time, Letitia Rogers, gave a two day workshop on Rio Grande Weaving and I was hooked. I continued to hone my skills in that style of weaving, but quickly found I wanted more. In 2014, I was lucky enough to sign up for a 3 month online course given by Rebecca Metzoff in Contemporary Weaving. That course changed my life. I fell in love with weaving the way she teaches it and I plan to take more of her online courses as they come available. As workshops come available in my area, I take them, but they are few and far between. Luckily, my original weaving instructor, Letitia Rogers, gave another two day workshop in February of 2015 on weaving the traditional Aubusson way. I enjoyed that workshop also and learned more about building shapes instead of weaving from selvage to selvage as Rebecca Metzoff teaches. However, Rebecca’s weaving style is my preferred weaving style also.


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The Tapestry Weaving of the Coptics

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Color, Inspiration, Tapestry Weaving | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Looking at fragments of tapestries online is frustrating at best. Any one who loves fibers knows that there is nothing like seeing fiberart (whatever that entails) in person.  Being able to touch it is even better. And being able to see the back, invaluable. Because I cannot see the many Coptic textile fragments in person (and there are many that have survived even from the very beginnings of the Coptic culture, way back in the first century A.D.) it took me qute some time to unravel the first mystery:  why did it seem like so many of the tapestry fragments were attached to a linen even weave background?  I would like to say I solved this mystery on my own, but in fact I found the answer in a textile text book. I have discovered that some times the most comrehensive explanations for the orgin and structure of textiles comes from text books. They talk about all the geeky details from whether the yarns are S or Z spun, how many plies, what kind of weave, etc.  Answers that are not commonly found in history books.

C-116D-Coptic


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Handpainted Silk Braclet with Clasp

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Tapestry Weaving, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

I discovered some new findings. The light bulb appeared. I could use them to make bracelets out of woven silk tapestry. I patiently waited while they winged their way to me and was thrilled once they arrived to find out my light bulb was shinning on something very possible indeed.

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I quickly wove a strip of silk tapestry and attached a finding. It was perfect.

We started selling the kit for this a couple of weeks ago and they have been flying off the shelf. The kit allows you to make two bracelets: one half an inch wide and one three-quarters of an inch wide. I thought it was time to write an instructional blog about it in case some of you need some operating instructions to get started (and to finish it).

Four Silk Bracelets

Four Silk Bracelets


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Up to $100 off The Spencer Power Treadle

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Tapestry Weaving, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

These deals are valid through Wednesday, July 29th 2015. Cannot be combined with any other offers. Can only be used once. Only valid at mirrixlooms.com. 

loom and spencer treadle

The Electric Spencer Power Treadle is an electronic foot treadle that changes the shed so you don’t have to do it manually. It’s perfect for weaving tapestry on a Mirrix Loom!

This new treadle (it has been around for barely a year) has been tested and tested and the unanimous opinion is that it makes weaving tapestry and/or fiber much faster since your hands are free to just weave and not change the shed.

It also gives the shed-changing arm a break helping to eliminate shoulder stress.

Now is a great time to invest in a treadle and a Mirrix Loom (or a treadle for your Mirrix Loom): the perfect tapestry-weaving package. Add on a loom stand and you’ve got what amounts to a portable floor-loom!

Get $100 off the Spencer Treadle* with the purchase of ANY Mirrix Loom through 7/29/2015 with code pt-100 at checkout.

Get $60 off the Spencer Treadle* through 7/29/2015 with code pt-60 at checkout.

Click here to learn more about the treadle and to purchase with this amazing deal.

 

The Tapestry Weavings of the Incas

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Tapestry Weaving | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

To presume I can impart the Inca history of tapestry weaving in a blog post is of course absurd. I won’t pretend I can even chip away at the surface, but I will try to extract the salient points to give you a sense of what tapestry meant to this huge and ancient culture.

Collection of Bryn Mawr College: Tapestry Tunic Fragment with step zig zag pattern, ca 1476 - ca. 1534

Collection of Bryn Mawr College: Tapestry Tunic Fragment with step zig zag pattern, ca 1476 – ca. 1534


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A Brief History of Tapestry Weaving

Posted on by mirrixlooms / Posted in Inspiration, Tapestry Weaving | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Tapestry (or weft -faced weaving) has been with us for a very, very long time.  The richness and diversity of tapestry is a fascinating history of both ancient and not so ancient cultures.  The oldest fragments of tapestry that have been discovered came from Egypt and date back to 1500 B.C.  I found these photos of such fragments here.

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The Coptic tapestries were made in Egypt from the 4th to 8th century.  I found this  Coptic Curtain Fragment made of wool and linen for sale that was made in that time period.

C-146D-Coptic
C-132D-Coptic

The Incas of Peru also produced tapestries, a few of which have survived such as this fragment from the pre-Columbian area (found at this website)

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Almost any culture that practiced weaving had tapestry as one of its techniques. Tapestry is decorative, strong and versatile. It can be used as a saddle blanket, a bag, a wall hanging, a rug . . . the list goes on. It can withstand the ravages of time like no other woven material and hence fragments of it have survived thousands of years.

Tapestries have graced the walls of castles and the interior of tents as well as the hallways of modern buildings. No other art form is as noble and awe-inspiring. The richness of dyed fiber seems to reach out with its depth and beauty, pulling the viewer in with its amazing magnetism.

I was looking through my favorite book on tapestry:  “Tapestry” by Barty Phillips and found my all time favorite fragment of a fish woven in Egypt sometime between the third and sixth centuries. This fish looks like it could have come straight from a modern tapestry. The techniques included: eccentric wefts, hatching, slit tapestry, outlining, weft and warp interlock. The colors were a rich blend of oranges and yellows and browns that seemed to have not faded over time. When I look at that fish I feel like time has not moved on at all, that  I could see in my mind the person weaving that fish in the same manner that I could have woven that fish. In fact, I am so in awe of that fish that it has taken great restraint not to try to copy it!

I could pepper this blog with examples of all the cultures that have embraced tapestry over thousands of years, but I suggest that you take your own journey and explore both on the internet and through books such as the one I mentioned the varied and expansive journey tapestry has taken throughout history.  It’s mind-boggling. If you are a tapestry weaver it will serve to connect you to the past as if an unbroken thread has spun its way through the centuries to reach you. It gives me chills to think of it.

If you are looking to explore modern tapestry I suggest you start with the American Tapestry Alliance website: http://americantapestryalliance.org.  I could spend days and days (and have done so) just exploring the artist pages. The diversity of style and subject matter all contained within the rather rigid restraints of tapestry technique will give you a greater and global understanding of what tapestry really is: a very serious, very controlled and difficult art form that can be as diverse in style and subject matter as, let’s say, oil painting. In fact, during the middle ages oil painting was seen as the poor man’s tapestry (I love that!).

I have to admit, I am very prejudice when it comes to tapestry. I consider it the highest form of art and one of the most difficult. It is no easy task to create a tapestry that is both technically and aesthetically correct and pleasing. In fact, it’s difficult at best. It is no wonder that there are very few dedicated tapestry weavers wandering this earth. The number is actually tiny compared to other art forms.

But don’t be intimidated by this art form.  After all our ancestors were not. It’s not something you will master over night. It is a slow and beautiful journey that can engage you for a life time.

May yours begin here.