Friday, 7 March 2014

Weaving project - number 6.

Trying to catch up on some time with this weave project....
the last one to complete my HNC course!  Gulp!

What kicked it off was my blue and white quilt and simply wanting to weave with white....
then I took a group of photos on the way to work one morning,
the gorgeous winter sky and bright white clouds echoed the colours in my mind
so this was really my source point.

First stage is to work on the sketchbook so today I've been playing with collage bits
and my new 'Brusho' inks.  :0)

.......remember those school days, of playing with bits of tissue paper?

....more on the abstract side, I got hold of some plain old masking tape,

.....and set to creating thumbnail colour washes.

Then I let loose the inks, keeping the theme of clouds and sky
in mind....

.....using some hand made paper for texture,

....adding the ink powder to wetted paper and letting it do its
own thing!

.....then masking the paper with white candle wax.

Yep, I've had a really good play-time today.  :0)
See ya!  x

Monday, 3 March 2014

Holding memories......

It has been quite a while since I have been near blogdom
but that is because I was spending some very precious time with my older brother
 who had been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

I just wanted to put out into the ether so to speak my sadness that he lost his fight recently 
and that we, his family, can no longer be near him.
We didn't live in each others pockets over the years but we all knew 
that the others would be there if needed.

There is a big gap in our family now and I guess it is only time 
that will make that any easier.
I only hope that now there can be a little peace from, and for, everyone that has known him.

Remembering you kid.  xxx

David,   July 1960 - February 2014

Saturday, 4 January 2014

A working Mill

I thought this might be of interest to some of you, it was an eye opener for me
and something that helped me connect to my families past!!

As part of my last visit to college, just before christmas, we went
as a group to visit a local, working woollen mill at Bradford.
Compared to the huge working mills of the last century in this area I guess
it is actually quite a small affair but it was so fascinating!

.....all this gorgeous wool set up for cleaning, mainly merino and shetland.

.......vast drum carders where colours begin their blending process.

......yarn being spun, machines in huge ranks!
This was the part that hit home for me as I know my maternal grandmother,
as a young teenager, worked in a spinning mill in close by Wakefield. that's what I call a yarn stash!
Enormous bins of stockpiled yarn singles. The in house textile designers
get to play with all this....oooo, the envy!  :0)

......ranks of weaving looms in action, just a small number I guess compared to what used to be,
but the noise!  You do begin to appreciate what it was possibly like when our
wool and cotton industry was at its height!

.....a close up on just one loom, the speed at which these machines work
makes you feel sadly slow when in front of your table loom!
To actually see the fabric growing before your seconds.
I'm sorry, it was simply a wow moment for me!

....lengths of cloth, having been washed, are swept into these trolleys
to be moved to yet another machine for the drying process.

......and at the end of the process all these gorgeous bolts of fabric
that simply get your fingers twitching.

It is just simply wow, fantastic, and to think that it is still happening in little old Yorkshire
in this new century......its wonderful. I am so pleased that some companies
still manage to hang in there and to produce such gorgeous textiles.
 ......just a small snatch of part of their collections.

One day, maybe this could be me!!!!!!!  ;0)))
Cheers!  x

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

New year...

I'm quite glad to be seeing the back of 2013 I don't know about you!
An awful lot of ups and downs, GP visits and the rest. ugh!  :0)

I know that 2014 has a lot in store already  - college finals, GCSE exams
for my daughter, my son is likely to be out and about on the roads 
(when did he grow up on me?) , deep breath here...
after 5 years of turmoil I am no longer a married woman ...
 and my older brother is suffering
with terminal cancer.....

However...I am hoping that there will be bright
skies along the way though...:0) I thought I might post this photo with that in mind.

Here's hoping that you all find your bright horizons
in 2014.

Hugs and best wishes,  Ash  xx

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Seasons Greetings

Just wanted to wish all of you out there the very best
for the winter season and hope you have a lovely christmas-time.

Went a little silly with the lights and the fibres!! :0)

Ash  x

Saturday, 30 November 2013

Panic.....who me?

Definately some calm needed around here.....
focus on the candles!!!  ;0)

These courses sure take up a huge chunk of your life don't they!
........especially weaving.
Trying to force creative endevours to a deadline just feels like
 you are trying to swim against the flow, well the tidal wave right now!  :0)

Just two weeks left before our intrepid group meets up again
at Bradford Art College - Hey guys, you feeling as stressed as me?

I think I've got my practice weaving swatches tied down now,
guess there is plenty that could follow through, but then if I tried
it would all feel so rushed and incomplete!

Just thought I'd show you the two weaves I have on the go for the
final item/s we have to produce this time.

I'm using card spacers in this weave hoping to give the yarn space to move
 when I come to giving it a wash. The green and black yarn is one that I overdyed
and is slightly elastic and gorgeously soft as it has alpaca in the mix.
It is only a scarf width but I had in the back of my mind
that the warp could be extended to make a throw.
Seriously expensive that would be though as I've also used silks,
mercerised cotton and a fine wool boucle. So maybe not right now!  ;0)
Fingers crossed the washing works!

This is the last panel that I will be weaving....I call it freestyle,
using weft threads as I go along, guess it would be designing on the loom?
The whole project is supposed to be about the yarns, their textures and colours 
rather than the actual weave pattern. 
I've worked up a fairly open twill here, really its there just to hold the
fancy yarns in place. A collage I had made in my sketch book set
me off on this adventure.....
no more warp left after this one and I don't think I'll be pushing
to put on a second now, I've still got all my college paperwork to do yet!  Ugh!!
Bad planning?  Yep, you bet!  
Organised, jest surely!!!!!!  :0)

See you when I resurface in a couple of weeks I guess!
Busy at my part-time job too right now too and as for fitting in helping a colleague with
curtain making.....mayhem!!!!!

Hoping you have a good time as we head into December,
what already! Can I have this year back again!  ;0)

Hugs.  Ash  x

Thursday, 14 November 2013

How to end a working day.... home over the hilltops and see this.....
Need I say any more!!  :0)

Ash  x

Friday, 8 November 2013

Wensleydale wool again!

Hello again from a very wet Yorkshire Dales!

I'm still trying to keep on track with my college course....hmmmmm!
but have managed to squeeze in a teeny-tiny amount of spinning.
I'm still on my wensleydale and still in the middle of using bright colours...
such a nice change to the dreary skies outside... :0)

 I'm trying a slight detour too, I've recently discovered another fibre with a reasonably long
staple  (Romney, from the Romney marshes) and figure, well I'm hoping,
 that it will blend well with the wensleydale.
Here is a little nugget of the two carded together....its looking like
it might make for a slightly fluffier yarn......

.........we shall see!  :0)

Hugs everyone, catch up soon.  Ash.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Autumn....some good points....

Winter may be on its way, autumn may be giving is so much rain 
we feel sodden half the time but in between we get something quite glorious too....

....some mornings, after overnight rain, turn up bright and fresh
and 'newly polished'.  The low angle of the sun makes for some
lovely light effects.....

Even huge puddles on the road,
 (because they haven't got the drainage organised!!),
become mirrors to the skies above!

On these mornings the whole sky simply becomes a dance floor for the clouds
that bright blue against the Dales green of the grass is
just, well scrumptious! :0)

Then sometimes, only sometimes mind this is a collie-x after
all!, my lovely companion will sit still for two seconds
so I can capture her shining in all this lovely light!

Then on finally getting back home there is yet another
of the mornings treasures...... bright, shiny, wonderfully
purple-black elderberries fresh off the hedgerows....

.....which later in the day are to be found bubbling away together with some windfall
apples in my jam pot.....yum!!  :0)

Enjoy autumn if you are in my part of the world.

Best wishes,  Ash.

Monday, 21 October 2013

and so to........!

Well that would be 'and so to bed' which is true.....I've reached the end of another day,
I'm going to make myself a 'brew', chill for ten, maybe another
chapter of my book and then, hopefully, catch the Zzzzz's...ah, bliss!
the other and so to is..... 'and so to yarn'.
I've managed to get some of my lovely newly dyed fibre
into yarns, just thought you might like a peek! 

I've chosen some colours,
split the fibre down ready to spin,

...and here are a couple of the results - my very own,
self-striping wensleydale yarn.
Totally outside of my usual 'box' for colour schemes, but they
are growing on me and its good to live outside of the box once in a while isn't it!!!

Sweet dreams,   Ash.