Woven pockets

Here are two, not so great photos, of what I’m working on at the moment. The chambray peasant skirt with soari woven pockets is something I am developing for my Etsy shop. I love this skirt. It is super comfortable and very cool for summer. The only problem with this one is that the weave on the pockets is too thick for the chambray, so back to the loom. I am going to try weaving the pocket out of linen or cottolin. Maybe even some recycled sari silk.

The linen “elephant” pants are something I made for myself. They are kind of like very loose bloomers. I work at home, so comfort comes first. The pockets are woven out of strips of linen and wool roving with a cotton warp. I really like them, but I had to alter the the pattern I had adapted from an existing pattern. It had the crotch hanging very low. Kind of like the old M.C. Hammer pants. Not a good look or at all comfortable. These were a little more labor intensive, so not sure if I will have them in the shop or not.

I also am working on some slow stitch and block printed pockets. Will post pictures when they are done. If any of you sewists out there are interested in one-of-a-kind pockets for your sewing project(s), contact me: val@casamarengo.com.

Have a great day everybody!

 

 

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Wall weavings and a new loom

Montage

I’ve been working on small wall hangings using various recycled and natural elements. The pine needles are particularly tricky to work with. Clockwise from top right: 1) cotton, wool, pine needles, wood, leather; 2) Wool pine needles, leather; 3) hemp, cotton, wood; 4) Wool, pine needles, leather;  5) Wool, recycled sari silk, recycled tea bags, raffia, nettle yarn, handmade paper and watercolor. All are now available in my Etsy shop.

The big news is that I finally got my Saori loom. I am so excited and can’t wait to start using it. Will post photos soon of new projects.

saori loom

Lastly, I finally finished this felted/linen/wool-embroidered and leather wristlet. Now available in my Etsy shop.

It sat on my work table for weeks just waiting for me to put the strap on. Sometimes things just fall by the wayside.

Well, that’s it for now. I hope everybody is having a great week.

Sunday’s weaving

IMG_1040I like keeping Sundays for myself to play in the studio. I either paint, weave, block print, rust/eco dye or sew. So many fun choices that sometimes I can’t decide. It’s a great time to experiment and not worry about any deadlines. This past Sunday I spent a relaxing day in the studio working with pine needles and wool. The tricky thing about pine needles is that the tips are fragile and you have to be careful not to break any off while weaving. The other hard part is keeping them steady when starting the weave since you can’t really warp them on a loom. I made two weavings, but only one of them (this one) seemed to work. I really like it and will be making more for my Etsy store.

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Roots?

I am super excited that my Navajo loom came today. I won it in a hard fought auction on Ebay. It is beautiful and it is signed by the Navajo artist that made it. While I won’t be doing completely traditional Navajo weaving on it, the idea of weaving on it makes me feel like I am reaching back to my roots. I am not Navajo, but I am part Yaqui. And, while the Yaqui were better known for their mask making and basket weaving, they also made woven blankets. I can’t wait to get started.

Saori weaving

saoriclassSpent a lovely morning at Laura Roveda’s Saori Studio LA  where I got to try out this lovely saori loom. I had a feeling that I was going to really like it and I did. Sadly, it’s out of my budget at the moment, but definitely something to save up for.

SAORI WX-60 Loom

I can easily do free weaving on this and being an abstract painter, this is right up my alley . I plan on producing pieces for bags, pillows and whatever else I can come up with for my Etsy store. Here are a couple of things I made already using my rigid heddle loom. The top two pieces are linen with handwoven wool insets. The bottom piece is linen with felting and sashiko stitching. The yellow cross body bag has grey linen on the backside and the closure and strap are still to be added.

saoripurses_1

I really need to finish up some of these half finished projects and photograph them, so I can put them in my store. Slow going, but having so much fun!

 

The weaving madness continues

Well, I have to admit it–I am addicted to weaving. I have been taking a class once a week to learn how to use my Glimakra rigid-heddle loom. My first complete project was a houndstooth wool scarf. A little hot for it now in So Cal, but I will appreciate next winter, I’m sure.

I also have a nice collection of frame looms that I am using for more artistic pieces: wall hangings and tapestries. I just ordered an inkle loom to make straps for my purses and if that isn’t enough, I have just discovered Saori weaving which is a Japanese contemporary hand weaving program founded by Misao Jo in 1969. She started weaving at 57 years old and created her own loom and style, free from the traditional concept and rules of weaving. Now, this is right up my alley. I am going to take an intro class, but in the meantime I’ve been experimenting with Saori style on my rigid heddle loom.

I am going to use these panels as insets on my purses and pillows.  Of course, I am dying to get one of the Saori looms, but they are quite expensive. If after I take the class, I can’t live with out one, I will start saving my pennies to buy one.

Needless to say, I am having a great time! 🙂

Weaving madness

Weaving, my new obsession. I love all the different textures and materials. The artistic possibilities seem limitless. I just started a tapestry based on one of my abstract paintings. It is extremely challenging and painting now seems so much easier. I have to say that I prefer weaving on a frame rather than my rigid heddle loom, but this is probably due to the fact that I am not very proficient yet. I am taking a class and maybe as I learn more, I will like it more.

On another note, I just finished the Liesl + Co Gallery Dress. I went with the Kaufman Rustic Chambray Linen in Indigo. And, I have to say, I love, love, love it! I will post pictures soon.