Thursday, June 18, 2009
This is a sauna towel. I've been weaving linen in these long days just before Midsummer. Linen has a gleam that makes it wonderful to look at. If there is anything mysterious about weaving to me, it is the strange compulsion I have to touch the cloth, and watch it grow, thread by thread in the loom, to watch it change when it is cut off, to knot the fringes, pulling against the weight of a book, to hold down the raw, new weave. Washed and dried the weave pulls in, almost 3 inches from side to side, and 4 inches from top to bottom. The fringes are trimmed, and the trims are almost too pretty to throw away. The touch of the cloth becomes soft, and full. The light shines though it, and across the folds, in a way that fascinates my eye.
I like to make cloths for rooms that I imagine. This is a cloth to go on the blackened bench of an old Finnish smoke sauna that I saw one time. Miraculously, I found that the smoke blackened benches do not rub off.