Good advice for many things in life and in weaving.
The particular why I'm puzzling through in this post is:
"Why were the drafts I loved successful or unsuccessful for the Ruby Leslie Color Workshop warp?"
(Warning: I tend to think out loud....or on paper or using a keyboard....so this post is long and might not be even slightly interesting to anyone. I will not be offended if you just skim - or even bail out now!! I need to keep all this info in here so I can come back and look at it so that it sticks in my mind.)
I don't always apply my engineering training to my creative pursuits. Perhaps I should do it more often. Thinking analytically about why I like something or why I don't could help me create things I think are beautiful and avoid those projects that just don't come out to my liking.
For me, nothing is more motivating than a project that is coming out even better than I imagined....and nothing is more demotivating than a project that I don't love. For me, that feeling of loving a project is really important....worth thinking analytically to make it more likely that I feel that way more often.
I realize I've actually resisted thinking analytically about creative projects because I've often used those projects as an antidote to too many hours at work thinking along rigid engineering lines. Even though I'm not working as an engineer these days, old habits die hard.
What I want to mull over in this post is why some of the drafts that I chose and sampled looked good and some were huge disappointments. They were all drafts that I liked and thought would work, but only some of them actually worked.
First I tried this draft that reminds me of fern fronds.
When I wove it, I didn't like it with this warp. I think the issue was that the warp has strong stripes and this draft has strong horizontal elements. My weft was also striped since I didn't have enough of any one color to do the project.
I think the warp stripes, weft stripes and strong and fairly large horizontal were competing with each other rather than helping one another.....so I don't think this was a successful combination.
These crescents are OK on paper. They were on my short list, but I didn't love them.
When I wove them, they looked pretty good. I think the small scale of the shape and the fact that it doesn't strongly push my eye in any particular direction helps this combination to work.
My favorites on paper had a strong diagonal component.
I thought these diagonal bricks might look good also.
Both the fusili and the bricks disappeared when I wove with them.
Looking at the fabric again today, I realized that if I look at the back of the fabric, I can see the fusili a little bit and one small part of the bricks. (The top two shapes are fusili and the bottom shape is part of a diagonal brick.
I judged one pattern by what the back of it looked like, and the other by a very small repeat.
I'm still happy with the choice of the crescents, because I ended up using this fabric for napkins - so I'm glad that it's reversible.
My decision-making process could have been better though.
Things I learned:
- Make sure I know what both sides of the fabric will look like. If I want the cloth to be reversible, make sure to consider both sides!
- The size of the motif in the weaving and any color variations in the warp and weft will interact
- As with so many things in life, good on paper isn't always good in practice!!
- Analyzing why you either liked or disliked something is a good way to learn and improve as a weaver!
Finished napkins on my autumn table
Samples from the workshop
Day 1 of color workshop
Day 2 of color workshop (I guess I was too tired to write about day 3!)
Ruby's Teaching Schedule