Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bead Leno Workshop

Yesterday was the first meeting in 2009 of the New Hampshire Weavers Guild.

Patricia Morton taught an excellent morning workshop on Bead Leno. I attended the workshop mainly because a weaving buddy of mine has been weaving bead leno lately, and Dust Bunnies Under My Loom has some recent posts about it too. Try as I might, I could not picture how it worked without seeing it in action.

The workshop was great! Patricia started at the beginning, explained the basics and then built on the basics to cover ways various weavers have used bead leno. I felt like I really understood it by the end of the workshop (which is no small feat with me!!)

Plus she had many samples and finished objects by several talented weavers for us to look at and pass around the class. She also thoroughly reviewed the literature and provided a great bibliography.

Bead Leno and Basketweave

As if that weren't enough, she had two looms set up, one with 4 shafts and one with 8, where we could try weaving bead leno. It's a really weird feeling to weave it - because as the yarns twist around the weft it feels really strange to try to pack it in with the beater.

Beads between reed and heddles (top view)

Shed with beads down and floating selvedges

Constricted shed with beads in action

I left the class totally fired up to weave a summer project with bead leno. I even managed to buy yarn at the yarn table that I hope will work well for what I have in mind. (Note that I'm not promising to weave it this summer.....although it will be nice if I do!)

8H Bead Leno with Blocks so bead leno and half basketweave can weave independently

There were lots of books and even some weaving equipment for sale on the yarn table.

I didn't photograph the library, but I love libraries, and the guild library is no exception!!

We meet at the beautiful Kimball-Jenkins Estate in Concord, NH. I was surprised at my first guild meeting a few years ago to see close to 100 people in attendance. I was picturing something much smaller! Fun stuff!!


Deanna said...

Cool to see the bead leno sheds. Thanks!

And wow - 100 people at a meeting. We've NEVER had that many here, even when we had ~ 150 members. Now our membership is down to ~ 85.

Janice Zindel said...

Enjoyed seeing the bead leno pics, thanks! Always wondered what that was. FYI, in case you wish to go further into it someday, Complex Weavers has a fairly new study group for leno/gauze/bead leno.

Meg in Nelson said...

I saw the referenced link as well, but not sure what I'm looking at. It's been ... years since I last tried Leno, too.

Anyway, glad you enjoyed the workshop, and look forward to your summer leno project. (Summer is just about finished here, so you have nearly a year, or two, or three.....)

Life Looms Large said...

The NH guild has over 200 members, and gets good attendance at meetings. I was very surprised to find that many weavers around me when I started to weave!

Janice, thanks for the info about a CW study group. I don't think I'll venture far into it, but I know some one else who might be interested.

Good point Meg about summer ending in the southern hemisphere.....that way my projects are never late! It's always summer somewhere!


Jennifer said...

The bead leno is interesting, but like you I would have to see it in action to understand. I look forward to seeing what you do with it!

charlotte said...

Bead leno looks very exciting, thank you for sharing this interesing technique. I have no clue what it is called in a Scandinavian language, nor how to weave it. I will forward a link to this post to the teacher of our weaving class and ask her.

Life Looms Large said...

I just found an online diagram that shows the draft including beads for bead leno.

Click the Bead Leno Draft and go to page 17 to see it.