Thursday, June 7, 2012

"Why do I weave cloth?" by Vicki Allen

I want to create for myself interesting patterns and see how they work. I want to understand the interlacement of warp and weft and the interaction of color by creating for myself a tangible fabric.

I enjoy the challenge of figuring out how a structure works and how to set up what I envision on the loom. I like working through all the little challenges that come up when weaving due to differences in yarn and mechanical problems.

Weaving engages my interest from the time I see a fabric someone is wearing that excites my curiosity, or see a weave pattern in a book or magazine that makes me look twice, to the final result of a piece that I can hold, feel, drape, share and just enjoy looking at!

I want to have a piece of fabric in my hand that I can touch and talk about and that I can show to someone else and share with them the idea that caught my imagination.

I weave to create for myself; to experience exactly what is happening when the threads interact and the pattern appears pick by pick. I love to hold the finished piece and experience the excitement I felt when I first saw the diagram… but now it is made real.

I have tried my hand at writing, painting, macramé, beading, sewing, knitting, crochet, lucet cord making, inkle weaving, bead weaving, ceramics, music making (piano, flute, bowed psaltery), needlepoint and embroidery and gardening.
My mother tried everything that caught her eye and did at least one project to completion before deciding whether to keep on with it. She sewed clothes for us all and was a talented gardener. She is 99 years old this year and her mind is still active and alert. From her I learned to try things and explore the things that appealed to me.

I love books and the endless ideas they hold. I always intended to be a librarian. At college my roommate majored in textile design. Through her I was exposed to many different artistic media formats. It was impossible to sit and watch her create something beautiful without asking for some string of my own to try it for myself.
When I had the opportunity to be gifted with a 4-shaft counterbalance loom, I jumped at the chance. That was the start of this exploration that has so captured my curiosity. Everything else (except music and gardening) fell away. Thinking about weaving and the process of weaving is challenging and fun. I have never had classes but have learned much from books and, of course, the great society of weavers on the internet.

Weaving keeps my mind active and I don’t think I will ever run out of new things to learn and figure out and think about!

So I believe I could say I weave cloth because I am fascinated with weaving and for fun!

Vicki Allen, Weaver

1 comment:

  1. This is the first time I've communicated with Vicki, and she doesn't have a blog/website/photo site/Facebook page she'd like to link to, so please welcome our mystery weaver!!

    Vicki, I'm getting to a similar place where I wonder if a particular structure would work on fiber (as opposed to the computer) and how a combination of yarns would interact as one of the most interesting things; the "finished" work at times have been secondary to the satisfaction of seeing how my "theory" work in real life.

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