Friday, 30 October 2015

Stuff I need to write

Ok I am not writing this to elicit a response I just need to write it. I read this week that my favourite yarn company has gone into liquidation, a sad day indeed, But it got me thinking, I have been in a rut for a while with my weaving I seem to have lost my sense of direction, maybe in my life as well. I enjoy hand stitching but my eco printing isn't going so well either. I have masses of yarn to use so do I feel obliged to use it. Maybe I just need to take a step back. I am raising more questions than answers which is not why I started on this, I was hoping to find answers, I am not doing that.
I probably shouldn't post this, maybe one red wine to many but we all go through this from time to time, don't we?
I wish I could write like Grace, talk like India and Jude, express my feelings more often.
Should I post this, probably not but fate takes a hand every so often.


  1. Debbie, I am so glad that you posted this. It is honest, clear writing and real and when I come here, I come away enriched not only by your art, but equally by the words you share with all of us, how you see the world. We are all unique and we each have gifts to share and we also experience sometimes, the same situations, the particulars may be different for instance as I am not a weaver, but the feelings resonate.

    Right now I'm going through a bit of a "so what" time with my natural cloth dyeing...for every bit of cloth that gives me joy, there are those walnut dyed cloths that are too pale, or have some markings on them that came about who knows how or there are some attempted leaf imprints on cotton cloth that just look more like messy blobs rather than beautiful leaves. I will say as a disclaimer that I don't sell my dyed cloths so I am not under any pressure there except for my own self imposed sense of aesthetics! Lately, I seem to be reworking existing cloths rather than creating new landscape collages. I tell myself that this has more to do with the season, we are heading into winter and there are less field materials for me to forage; see I've done my bit with frozen flower petals, berries and rusty bits. What I have come to know is that inspiration, for me, is not continuous, cloth visions come in their own time and if anything, I have learned to keep myself busy with other pursuits until my dye cauldrons call out again and my cloth scraps whisper...

    Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thank you Marti we all go through these stuck times I know.
      Cloth dyeing with natural dyes can be a bit hit and miss but the option of re dyeing can open up new avenues and surprising results, winter is a good time for dyeing here, as one season ends new oppportunites await, nothing wrong with reworking cloth until you find the inspiration to sitr you forward again.

  2. ah! in vino veritas, the muse needs to be acknowledged and your words here are part of the ritual, one of the most magical paintings about weaving is William Holman Hunt's "The Lady of Shallot"

    1. you are right Mo and yes this is a magical painting, so much symbolism. I also love the Waterhouse painting 'I am sick of half shadows'.

  3. Debbie...whenever anyone speaks their Heart, i am Heartened by it...just as the most
    recent post Judy Martin gave us...
    and that one extra red wine...i smile...i know that. Sometimes i get up in the middle of
    the night and go look, thinking i've gone "over the line" with something...but really,
    if it's Honest, it's important.
    i think the feeling you might be having now is something so familiar to me...and what
    came into my mind was a vision i've had before when thinking What If I could Weave...
    how i see a woven piece with bits of cloth stitched in to spaces in the weave....i should
    draw you a picture..
    i will not learn to weave, so that vision will remain just an image...but really, it came and
    comes from the unrest sometimes, the what am i Doing?question.
    and then, i sit back sometimes and really look at what Jude she is not seemingly ever driven to do something Different for Different's she is so committed to refining her 9. And well, India, how it's her life's work.
    so...even tho you didn't find an answer in the questions, the questions are good...something is incubating and the questions nudge it, turn it, like an egg needs to be turned.
    Actually, if you continue to question this way, fool with your materials, let us WITNESS
    the process, I would LOVE that...?????
    and just in this moment as i am thinking and writing here, i remember something i wanted to remember and forgot...
    there is a's out of print....
    Papermaking for Basketry edited by Lynn Stearns
    I'll do a post on it this eveing, put some is about papermaking, but could
    so beautifully translate to weaving or cloth making or weavingcloth....
    Thank you for writing this, it allows me to feel like i know you More....

    1. Grace your writing is always so heartfelt, as was Judy's, very moving. I would love if you could draw me a picture of your vision of weaving, and yes I will 'fool' with my materials, play around, it is often the way forward, the way through the unrest, and also sometimes just sitting back, looking, thinking is the way to go.
      I wrote on your last post about the book, I have it, many ways forward in that book I think.
      Thank you for your writing.

  4. and...actually....finding this book in the dusty pile under the shelves is
    EXCITING!!!....i want to try something!!!!!
    and your words here were/are the impetus for this, so see??????
    THANK YOU!!!!!

  5. Debbie, and Marti.....I do fabric work, though my background is painting. I've spent the past 3 years being unable to paint, for various reasons...lots of life events coming one after the other....This year is the first time I've been able to pick up a brush and paint again, and it's going slowly; but it always does. Last year I exhibited a series of fabric work that expressed some of the events that had happened; it was almost as though once I'd completed that journey, I could clear the decks and think about 'where next?' After November I was empty. So I decided that I'd just spend time looking. I went to lots of exhibitions; looked at books; and didn't think about making anything. I find that I need times of taking in, so that I can 'regroup' as it were, and then take tentative steps into making again. Winter is a time for resting; and dreaming; and imagining. We have to let things be fallow sometimes. That's what I think, anyhow. Creative pauses are needful sometimes. Both of you have written evocatively about where you are. It's good to read your words. Thank you x

    1. Hi Jan, I follow your blog and and am inspired by your stitching and dyeing, we also communicate on Facebook but for some reason I hadn't connected the two.
      Sometimes we just do need to take a step back as you say. Winter is my busy time as Summer I have to be outside but I contemplate as I garden or just sit. I am glad you are tentatively finding your way back to painting, it seems as if you are finding a time for renewal. Thank you for your comments.

  6. I like to read honesty better than anything else. Bravo. And sometimes, if you view the search for "what is next" as an adventure, it is easier to live with.

    1. Hi Julie I really appreciate you taking time to comment when you are going through such a tough time yourself. Thank you

  7. I would like to thank you all for your kind, caring, thoughtful comments. I have been overwhelmed by your response it made me very emotional. What I am experiencing is a small moment in a big world and it is good to know you are all out there.

  8. Debbie~ I won't pretend to know what it feels like to feel dry when you make art the way that you (and some of the others) do. I only make art around a full-time work schedule. No one buys it. I give it away sometimes. With that being said, I have had times when no idea would come, when cloth just looked like cloth and not one creative word would enter my mind. It does feel frustrating. But, these days I look at it as a time to rest, do something else...percolate somewhere else until I feel like making or writing again. By questioning and throwing those questions out there (here) you've opened yourself up to new flow coming in. I've also (more recently) felt that there is no rule, no law that says I HAVE TO use the things I have and I have begun to pass on many materials that have just been hanging out here just being stored not used. Sometimes that can open a door too, if that makes sense. I just gave away a big bag of yarn that is really thicker than I like for the medicine bags I weave...some of it belonged to my mom. It found a new home with Project Linus and will be used in blankets for babies in the NIC units...and I am open to new ideas without the weight of feeling that I have materials I should be using. I think I'm rambling here, so I hope you understand. Whatever you choose to do and share, it will all come about just fine...even if you are sharing as a dyer-weaver with too much wine in her!

    1. Not rambling Nancy, making a lot of sense, I have been clearing out old yarn as well but still have enough to keep me going for the rest of my life I suspect. I will use it rather than purchase more which I don't really need, just get tempted by, sometimes it is good to have a restraint as you then have to think in different directions.

    2. Yes, using what we have. I did seem to leave that part out of my comment. I too have stopped purchasing (except that special treat purchase I recently wrote about). I've grown to like the challenge of coming up with ways to use what I do have, like you said, maybe leading to different directions. BTW~ I love when I do get over here and your page opens up to your beautiful and unique banner. I love the mixed materials! Have a good day, Nancy

  9. Art can be such a lonely pursuit. There is too much time alone to question and it's easy to lose the way. I know how you feel with the question of what it's all for? For me, it's for pleasure but I need appreciation too ... and reassurance about the quality of what I do to make my efforts worth while.