Tuesday, April 15, 2008



Last week I listened to an episode of Weavecast on sewing handwovens. The episode is number 26: Sew Your Weaving. It focussed on a wonderful interview with Daryl Lancaster. The interview was so inspiring that I recommend it to any weaver who has even had a glimmer of a notion of weaving yardage for clothing.

I have the yardage I have woven more or less recently.


When I started on that project, I did know that I wanted to use it for a jacket., And I still want to use it for a jacket. I have not, however, felt compelled (inspired?) to do anything about it. I have looked at my jacket patterns. I have looked at other jacket patterns at the fabric store and also online. But everything leaves me flat.


When Daryl weaves her yardage, she frequently has no particular plans for it. When she is done she treats her finished yardage simply as yardage she might have purchased in a store because she liked the fabric, not because she had any immediate plans for it. And it goes into her stash. For one, two, three years.

I have never had a fabric stash. Not in all my years of sewing. Creating a fabric stash was simply not economical.

Daryl, however, has clearly accumulated a stash of handwoven yardage. But she does not simply leave it stored away. She watches for patterns. Ultimately one strikes her fancy that will be perfect for one of her pieces in her stash. And she is off and running.


I do something similar with spinning. I spin yarn because something about the fiber calls to me. I may think I want to weave with it or knit with it. But really, I don't know. I just enjoy the process. And I collect a stash. I occasionally look through the stash to see if I want to do something with any of it. Often I do not, but once in awhile, ah, yes. And I am off and running.


My spun yarn stash creates no guilt. Why should a (small) fabric stash create guilt?

Is it wrong to weave solely for the pure pleasure of it?

I think I will pack my fabric carefully away (but not too far away---Daryl uses banker boxes). And let the guilt go. And wait. Who knows, perhaps I will weave some more yardage in the meantime!

Listening to Daryl Lancaster on WeaveCast relieved me of guilt. At last.


Ety W. said...
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Leigh said...

(Oops that was me in an out of date experimental blogger id.) Let me see if I can remember what I said. I appreciate the link and the recommendation of that WeaveCast episode. Liz Spear spoke about weaving and sewing yardage at last week's WNCF/HG meeting. Very inspirational. I'm working on a post about that, as soon as I can get the yardage out of my own stash!


My mom is a fabric stasher, she has a walk-in closet full of all kinds of fabric, sometime I ask her why and she always tells me that when she wants to create she has what she love on hand. I don't think I can blame her, I often go there to get what I need. So I think you could weave to the shear pleasure of the process, to your enjoyment and relaxation. If you find one pattern that you love you may already have the yardage you need to make it. It can only be win/win.

Dorothy said...

I only have a little stash of my woven fabric, it was worrying me a bit but now I feel happy as I realise it's just waiting for it's moment.

I guess there's times for weaving and times for sewing. I already decided that you need to know how a fabric feels and behaves before you can know what sort of pattern it is suited to. I think the worst thing you could do is feel you have to make the fabric up and to use a pattern you aren't entirely happy with - handwoven is far to precious for that.

Time I tuned in for that Weavecast episode, so bye for now ;)