Friday, January 1, 2010

Woven Table Runner Project

We finally finished our table runner!  Just in time for Winter.  Here is how we made it:

1.  Spinning:  In the Spring, we spun up yarns out of plain wool on our spinning wheels.

2.  Dyeing:  In Summer, at the Griffin Dyeworks Dye & Fiber Retreat, we dyed the yarns with natural plants. 
Broom & Copper = Chartreuse
Broom & Indigo = Green
Logwood = Lavender
Indigo = Blues

3.  Loading Shuttles:  In the Fall, we wrapped the yarns onto stick shuttles as we sang.
Up and down, up and down
We are making figure eights
Up and down, up and down
We are loading shuttles

4.  Warping:  We found a nice cotton crochet thread that had green, blue and ivory for the warp.  We dyed it in blueberries for a couple of days so that the colors blended well with our yarns.  The ivory parts turned lavender.  The warp thread was then wound into a ball using a nostepinne (this one in the picture is our favorite "nostie", made with reclaimed wood from Hurricane Katrina).  We then "warped up" our Ashford Knitters Loom.  The warp threads are the ones that are vertical on the loom.  They are threaded through the large and small slots on the "reed" and attached to the ends of the loom.  Warping takes time and two people to do it well!

5.  Weaving:  Taking turns each day, members of the family wove stripes with one of the yarns through the "shed" which is space between warp threads created when the reed is moved up or down.  Weaving back and forth created the "weft", or horizontal threads.  Mommy and Wilson made up a song as they wove.
Warp and Weft
Reed and Shed
We are weaving on the loom
Warp and Weft
Reed and Shed
We are learning weaving

We love our table runner!  So far, we have used it for our Nativity set and on the table under candles and food during dinner.  This is our second family weaving project.  We look forward to spinning, dyeing and weaving again in 2010!Creative Weaving: Beautiful Fabrics with a Simple Loom

Ashford Shuttles 22-inchStart Spinning: Everything You Need to Know to Make Great Yarn
Natural Dyeing


Tammy said...

That is just stunning. How much joy there will be every time you look at it knowing you all took part in making it!

Eagle Loft said...

Wow, what a labour of love! Such a special family project that will evoke memories of togetherness and accomplishment.

Truffula said...

Beautiful! I especially appreciate how this was a project completed over the course of so many seasons. How many memories must be woven into this fabric!

Jen said...

Oh it's just gorgeous! Bravissimo!

Acorn to Oak said...

Beautiful! And, it's so wonderful that your children enjoy fiber arts so much. I love it! :-D

Linda said...

Hello dear Jennifer,
This is just amazing, wow, how talented and creative you all are! This is so inspirational. Thank you for sharing your wonderful creativity.
Many happy wishes for 2010.

renee ~ heirloom seasons said...

Truly a family heirloom! Your colors are just wonderful!
Happy new year to you all!

Hannah said...

Lovely! I fancy a go at some weaving this year.

onegoldensun said...

What a beautiful and inspiring family project! I can see you all coming out with a beautiful book filled with the wonder and creativity that you share as a family. Such sweetness!

Grandma said...

The table runner is so beautiful!

Kathleen Scott said...

What a wonderful piece! I love that you know the trail of every bit of the piece. Makes it a living material. Thanks for posting pictures of the entire process.

Andrea said...


slim pickins said...

this is so beautiful and inspiring - what a meaningful experience to create something lasting as a family!

nicola@which name? said...

look how beautiful your kids are! that table runner is wonderful! my mom was a professional weaver.i love seeing weaving projects with kids!

Naturalearthfarm said...

How special - this is sure to become a family heirloom...
Warm wishes.Tonya

Beth said...

This is so beautiful - and such a treasure for the whole family! Many memories and much love have been woven in - it is sure to be a family hierloom.