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Knitting an edging for my solar dyed, handwoven kimono sweater

After researching my options, I decided to knit a garter stitch edging with mitered corners for the bottom of the sweater. My most useful resource has been Finishing School: a master class for knitters, by Deborah Newton (second photo). Pablo could feel the energy vortex and had to step on the book so I couldn’t read it and had to focus on him instead.

I’ve never knit an edging on a handwoven garment (or any garment) before or done mitering. The book is all about finishing knitted garments, but many of the ideas and techniques can be applied to handwoven items as well. There is very little information available on knitted and crocheted edgings for handwoven fabrics.

Newton suggests that when making an edging:

  • choose a finer yarn than used in the main body of the garment.
  • use smaller needles than you normally would for a tight edging, which she thinks looks better.
  • err on the side of picking up too many stitches and then decrease stitches as needed on subsequent knitting rounds for a richer, fuller look.

I like her style so I followed her suggestions. I chose a sock weight yarn in a complementary colorway to the colors in the worsted weight, solar dyed weft yarns (Wonderland Yarns Cheshire Cat Yarn - Cherry Tarts from Paradise Fibers). The garter ridges are the same thickness off the woven squares, which worked out perfectly. Because I have never done this before, I decided to stick to garter stitch. I picked up stitches with a size 0 (2 mm) circular lace needle (photos 3 & 4 showing the front and back, respectively, of the picked up stitches) and then switched to a size 1 (2.5 mm) circular needle (40-inches long) and two size 1 double pointed needles for knitting the two front square edges.

The connection between the knitted edging and the weft edges along the bottom of the sweater is smoother than the connection between the knitted edging and the warp loops on the front inside granny square edges; the warp loops are more widely spaced than the weft loops. I plan to weave in one or two rows of the weft yarn in between the knit and woven areas on those two front squares after I finish knitting the edging for a neater appearance. I also decreased some stitches, which also worked better on the weft loops than on the warp loops.

I plan to make the edge almost twice as thick as it presently is in the bottom photo, giving the bottom edge 12 garter ridges (24 rows of knitting). I have not yet decided on a bind off method. Next, I will knit sleeve edgings of the same width. I have not yet decided on how to edge the kimono collar. I will probably do a single crochet edging or embroidered blanket stitch using a double thickness of the sock yarn as the collar does not really need to be wider than it already is.

www.LisaRayner.com
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DIY Miniature Loom from Fall for DIY. This is a cheap and easy way to weave rather than macrame a small piece for jewelry, a dollhouse etc… I have a loom that my mom gave me that is full size and I had to take classes on how to use it - huge, complicated and back breaking - so I like the idea of miniature weaving. 

For matchbox weaving I posted a Roundup of 5 Matchbox Weaving Tutorials and Inspiration. 

"Garden Rug" by Liz Toohey-Wiese

A month-long weaving project. This rug features a lot of plants that grow in my garden, or I notice around town. Solomon’s seal, hostas. marigolds, mustard greens, roses, daisies, spiderwort etc. Both weaving and gardening have felt really important to managing some external stresses in my life this summer. I am happy to have both practices and the positive feelings they bring.

5

So this is it. My grad work. Finally I am posting this.

It’s called "Ab ovo", which can be vaguely translated from Latin as “from the very beginning”. It’s a classic tapestry woven using cotton, wool, acryle, lurex and god knows what else, which measures 2,2 x 3,3 m and took me about 6 months of on and off work.

This is the largest work I’ve ever made and, by far, the most labor intensive. It received highly positive reviews during the grad show and was graded A+ by the board. After all the effort, I really was so, so relieved.

Don’t you mind me, I’m just there for scale : ) (But do check out my dress!)

2

Emerging NYC-based artist Lala Abaddon’s journey through the art world started with analog photography and poetry. The idea of creating works that carry more than one story always fascinated her, and Abaddon felt like she found the answer when she wove her first piece. Interested in the process of deconstruction and reconstruction, she decided to cut up multiple existing photographs and weave them into new images.

As Abaddon discovered, these pieces concealed the original photographs within the new, abstract compositions. They also had a unique texture that added a whole different dimension to flat photo prints. Soon enough, the works started getting bigger and the patterns started getting more complex and elaborate. Her initial woven works began as 8 by 10 inch pieces, hand cut using a ruler and a box cutter. Abaddon is now using a stationary rail cutter and has recently finished creating a composition that is comprised of two 30 by 40 inch weaves. This work, along with a couple of other new ones, will be exhibited at a group show organized by Mecka NYC opening tomorrow at Hotel Particulier. Read more on Hi-Fructose.

4

China as imagined by a 17th century French designer of luxury goods.

Musicians, acrobats, monkeys and dancing rats join in on the embarkation celebration as the wife of Chinese emperor Shun Chi sails away. 

This scene is one of ten tapestries in the The Story of the Emperor of China series, only one other surviving example of this scene still exists today.

See the whole series here.

The Empress Sailing from The Story of the Emperor of China Series, woven about 1697 - 1705, Beauvais Tapestry Manufactory; after designs by Guy-Louis Vernansal. J. Paul Getty Museum.

DIY 12 Weaving Tutorials Blogged on truebluemeandyou.

  1. Woven Leather Ring Tutorial at The Perfect Pear here.
  2. DIY Weave A Space Invader Tutorial by minieco.
  3. Weaving with Drinking Straws 2 Tutorials.
  4. Miniature Loom from Fall for DIY. 
  5. Woven Wall Hanging from Honestly WTF.
  6. Cardboard Loom Weaving from If You Want a Thing Done Well, Do It Yourself.
  7. Amazing Woven Rope Rug Tutorial from Free People.
  8. Cardboard Loom Weaving from Made By Joel.
  9. Wire Rack Weaving from Wild Olive.
  10. Weaving Wall Hanging from Smile and Wave.
  11. Roundup of 5 Matchbox Weaving Tutorials and Inspiration. 
  12. Woven Heart Card and Envelope Templates from minieco.
Postcard from a steam-powered giraffe

Postcard from a steam-powered giraffe

I got a postcard today from GG the Giraffe, thanking me for the shawl I made Bunny!

Although it seems GG has appropriated it for herself…

The mental image of a goofy metal giraffe wrapped in a shawl cracks me up to no end.  The signature is done in the same gold ink that Bunny uses when she signs things as Rabbit, which is a neat touch.  This is totally going on my wall.  I love it.

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