Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Old School






We weavers met again at Kindred Threads , nearly everyone present. Everyone had something to show, or show and tell. Joanne's news was the best: she's a grandmother of a new baby girl. It seems like we were all just new mothers ourselves, but imperceptibly time has passed.

Jan brought a collection of old hankies from around the world. Kathy showed a new stuffed Kat with handwoven leggin's. Angela wove a long and beautiful shadow weave of 5/2 perle cotton, in rich colors. This she plans to make into two bags shown on our favorite weaver, Donatella 's blog. We are her fans. As usual, we discussed literature, politics, art, and other delicate matters, of which there will be no report here, but which has probably already changed the world.

Barb (of the Dell) brought in a stunning piece she wove of bamboo and cotton yarn, in a rich, dark chocolate brown. The solid color, warp and weft, was a very contemporary looking weave, with a supple hand. She said she made it from the pattern "Jean Lilly" in Marguerite Davison's classic book, A Handweaver's Pattern Book. Marguerite Porter Davison (b.1887 d. 1953) was an assistant to Anna Ernberg, collecting traditional colonial weaving patterns in the Appalachian mountain region. Hardly a modernist (see her picture above) her collection of hundreds of old 4-harness patterns is the Joy of Cooking of Weaving. We all own it. (My copy came as a gift, by way of my alert son-in-law, in a thrift store, who thought it looked like something I might like). It's amazing to see the old "Jean Lilly" look so modern.

Evan appeared in our group for the first time, bringing her notebook of weaving samples woven by her grandmother long ago, many out of this book. Each woven sample on a page was complete with roman numerals for the sample treadlings, and yellowed cellophane tape, a true artifact. I was inspired to come home and locate my Marguerite, and stick in a bunch more book marks while drinking coffee this morning. ( Jean Lilly? Upholstery from Finland? Swedish Lace?) And to write this post to the memory of Marguerite P. Davison.

4 comments:

humblebumble said...

i've got a copy of that book :)

mines is dead tatty though

Brittany Noel said...

I love this book. My weaving teacher at school references this book nonstop. We get photocopied pages for our first several assignments. Such a wealth of information.

Sounds like your meetup was a great night!

Susan said...

"Dead tatty?" Can't imagine what that looks like, but it sounds good.
I've never yet used my book to make anything, I just put a lot of bookmarks in.
Brittany, if you're ever in Wisconsin on a second Monday you should come visit us

Brittany Noel said...

Susan, I can tell you this much: if I go to or through Wisconsin for any reason, I will be sure I go through on a second Monday :)