Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Cloths I Like and Cloths I Make

Last update: September 23, 2017

There are types/styles of cloths I admire, and then cloths I like to make, and they don't necessarily overlap. Because I often speak in hyperbole, I'm often mistaken to like only the types I make but that's not the case.

I love, but at least for now can't/don't want to work with:

* All my life I've been smitten by old-fashioned Jacquard; think drapes and upholsteries in European castles/palaces. If I can get my hands on a loom, I would in a snap, but I've been shedding this dream due to financial and other limitations. Also love it when folks are creative and do their own things on Jacquard. I once came upon a fabulous Australian weaver's work but sadly lost that link.
* Textured cloth; I love smart use of boucles in particular; think coat fabric.
* Hand-manipulated techniques on the loom. How do they do them so evenly??
* Some plain weave, but I'm super fussy about them. Some are "badly" woven by the commonly understood standards but I still like them. I also love trekking.
 * Embroidered work; I'm a sucker for embroidery and beading, particularly old-fashioned motifs, especially florals or works in one hue.
* Tapestry weaving, though this is seriously in the "Thank goodness, someone else does it" category.
* Some felt work, but I'm fussy about them.
* Interesting prints.
* Uber-cleaver weaving, e.g. works that end up 3D, etc. So many interesting things on the Internet.
* "Contemporary"-looking cloth; although they look more like Art Deco or 1950's fashion. I most often find the look in home furnishing out of London.

I love to make:

* Clothes, not fiber/textile art.
* Smooth cloth/flat cloth/some shiny cloth as in using silk, mohair.
* Sheen contrast.
* Hue contrast. Complementary colors. Most definitely analogous colors.
* Cloth with weave-structure interest; patterns.
* Deceptively simple/complicated cloth, including clusters appear three-dimensional because of hues/values, length of floats.
* Supplementary warps and wefts; I don 't do enough of these.
* Interesting/new use of "old" weave structures.

Do you have this... discrepancy? Do you have a list of textiles you like somewhere I can read?


  1. How very interesting to see your two lists. I know that I have mental lists of things which interest me vs things which don't and the "things which interest me" list is often misinterpreted -- mainly by my mother! -- as things which I want to do or want to own, when I simply want to observe and admire. It would be quite a challenge to make my lists concrete, but you're setting me a good example.

  2. I had this mental list for almost as long as I have been weaving, but never tried to put into words or on "paper" and it was harder than I thought. And at least for me, there is more than the time constraint as to why I don't want to try making everything; some cloth just renders to pleasurable planning for me, whereas others, not so much.

  3. I also have mental lists of things I like and admire but would not want to even attempt to make myself ... and things I do want to attempt or learn how to do someday in the course of making my own artwork. That second list is mostly made up of techniques I want to learn in order to make something look like I want it to look, like the vision I have in my head. I am very aware that my time in this life is limited and I can't "do everything" so I edit myself whenever I find myself seeing something that really inspires me and there is a voice in my head that says, "Maureen, wouldn't that be cool to do?" Not. There simply isn't enough time to do everything. Besides there are so many awesome amazing artists already doing this or that. My biggest problem is focusing.
    I love your lists, btw.

  4. Even within the realm of weaving, there are so many techniques and aesthetics and it's amazing what people, individually and collectively, make. Then there are techniques so difficult and time-consuming, (Ikat, my goodness!) I just can't be bothered. But the big thing is, there are works that rely on the makers' aesthetics that I can't fathom attempting/emulating, which makes weaving, and all art/craft/life, so varied and interesting, and I'd rather enjoy others' creations than, well, try to emulate. And as you say, there is so llittle time, and I'd rather delve into the depth of a few things than try out everything, because in my office work life, that's all I was allowed to do and I found it soul-destroying.


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