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Posts from the ‘Children’ Category

Little people time

little weaver

It’s little people time again.

Little people aren’t worried about how they are weaving or even what they are doing at first.  Just using a beater to create a cardboard stiff structure of cloth is fun.  Here my one year old granddaughter can’t reach the weaving pedals on the smallest setting of the Saori Piccolo but she can get up into the seat and have a go at something.  I so wish I had these looms when my daughters were little. They might have even grown up to be interested in weaving.

When my daughters were young we did frame loom weaving and lots of inkle loom weaving but a floor loom with dimensions suited to a small growing body weren’t around.  I find a 4 or 5 year old can weave independently on these and by the time they are 7 years they are really knowing what to do and choosing design and colours.  Sometimes attention span is short but that’s ok too. Here is my niece weaving in 2008.

By 11 to 15 years they are capable of just about everything, although more application or interest will be needed for learning drafts and structure. But colour and fun is always there.






















Better than a Pool?

We love Saori weavingJanuary is a busy family time for me. It’s one of the few and mostly only time I get alot of visitors in the year and I love it. All my little people (and not so little people) come and guess what – my Saori looms get a better workout than a pool!

I’ve always wanted a pool but it just hasn’t happened. When I got serious a couple of years ago and checked out the prices they were about five times more than I thought they would cost.  Much better value to have some looms!

The great thing about having little visitors periodically is seeing their skill development  and motivation for weaving.My oldest niece, Darby, is now 11 years old and was keen to wind a warp with pretty colours. She very easily wound and threaded the 3 metre warp then wove it up in a few hours. She instantly picked up on the warping technique with 5 colours at a time! Her productivity, although totally irrelevant, also increased as she completed a Saori weave and Inkle band bag too.

Saori bag

Saori weave and inkle band bag

My little 20 month grand daughter was getting into it all on the Piccolo using it as a standing loom and beating, really beating, every row with purply pink sliver.  My step grand daughter, Ella, progressed amazingly to make a scarf for her mother. It’s all so exciting creating woven textiles. Handweaving offers an endless exploration of techniques and interaction. It never wears off.

2 year old weaving

My little weaver apprentice

enjoying saori

Ella delighting us with Saori ideas

When 4 year olds weave

It’s amazing when a 4 year old weaves. A little bit hectic and intensely industrious. Thanks to the Saori Piccolo and its mini size conversion, a 4 year old can operate this little floor loom very easily. The pedals are an easy reach, the spindleless shuttle is easily and safely threaded up and the weaving progresses despite entering at the same edge over several rows to create a little design feature…or rather a very out there design addition. How else can a little 4 year old weave up on a floor loom and learn to weave so young. I’m quite taken aback. Casey here is creating cloth for a skirt. The half metre woven will be added to next time she comes, eventually weaving enough fabric – such is the beauty of Saori inspired cloth!

Casey now thinks that everyone weaves with a floor loom so should I also set her up with a cardboard slit loom to learn the ‘basics’ of weaving? You know, the under and over, then over and under. Or can I bypass of of that and just get her loving cloth at the moment? If she really wants to get into the structure of weaving…she will…later. Or is it the wrong way round? What do you think?


Yarn and favourite people

This weekend was a long weekend (Labour Day in NSW) and I ‘m lucky to get my family visiting…for the Kombi Festival. So, of course, it was studio time as well.

Darby did the very big job of shading my colour wall. It is an enormous but exciting job ordering all the coloured yarns into an object of beauty. Casey/Katie and Lewis wove with gusto and experimentation and my Michelle was the official photographer. I know this post is rather gratuitous but it’s a chance to see show off yarn and my favourite people in the one place.

A new weaver…perhaps

A new life…and for us, grandparenthood.

Bree Vera Madigan Wong was born on 25 April at RNS, St Leonards, Sydney. Both mother and daughter (and son in law)  are doing very well. She is a stepsister for lovely Ella.

She has started off being very kind and considerate because 25 April is Anzac day and a public holiday in Australia and we were able to do the miles to get to her with virtually no traffic. I only saw about two cars at Chatswood which is usually in lockdown. I don’t need to tell you that weaving is on the back burner for a few weeks but I’m really hoping she will be interested in EVERYTHING including yarn.

Read more

Saori studio verve

At times in my studio I just feel so fortunate! How could I have been so lucky to stumble on weaving in my life? Read more

Autumn Knits

With autumn appearing my fingers start itching to knit. Nothing could be easier than knitting for little brand new bodies and I was quite the impressed knitter with this little number. It is a Debbie Bliss pattern from here.

Originally meant for Cashmerino I had a happy coincidence with a stash yarn. I used Harmony 8 ply from Bendigo Woollen Mills on 6.5mm (10.5 US) needles which met the tension requirements of 18 sts and 24 rows to a 10cm square. This yarn is quite lovely, with a texture in wool and cotton and a hint of lycra. Ok then it’s hand wash and the new mother I’m giving it to won’t know what she’s in for but it did wash and dry really easily.

Bolstered with extreme confidence I now go forth to knit more. The next  in a bamboo/cotton yarn. How good does success feel!

Colouring the underworld for babies

With so many babies being born in Australia’s baby boom I’ve taken to jazzing up singlets so the little ones feel connected to the textile world from the get go.

I used to buy the pale coloured singlets and do bullion roses on them. This looked great but the roses are a bit lumpy for their little chests. Also who wants insipid colours on a child when you can have your own shades of tie dye flocked with simple flower embroidery or applique. I was disappointed that some of the neck bands, from the same packet of singlets, didn’t dye with my cellulose fibre reactives as they must be polyester. Don’t you think the manufacturer would warn us of such horrors! Perhaps if weavers ran the world this would attract a major fine or even a jail sentence with the Textile and Weave Protection Board!

These photos are especially for Alex – the mum to be -  so she can see how to make them. I just concertina folded (or pleated) the singlet then wrapped string around them very tightly. In another lot I used clothes pegs to do the resist rather than string. You can see this effect in the two purple singlets above.