Saturday, May 21, 2005


Well, no cigar, but close:


Some of you may remember the start of this project last February. It served two purposes: as a public demonstration of weaving at my guild's open house, and also as an experiment in weaving without a plan. There was an update progress photo, but for the most part, this project languished.

It is knotted pile, and I like to equate the process of knotting to the process of knitting. It is knot by knot, rather than stitch by stitch. The hand motions are mostly fine motor manipulations that become habit, and unconsciously done, as in knitting. This allows time for the mind to wander, solving the world's problems, and occasionally some of my own.

This bag will be in a show, next June, in which all the pieces must be for sale. So as I weave away, I imagine the person who might buy this bag. It most likely will be someone near my age or younger, and probably someone who works. I imagine them sitting on the subway going to work, or in meetings at work, both times where, if it were me, I would need assistance with patience and equanimity.

That thought gave me the idea of putting a labyrinth on the bag, so the eventual owner could calmly follow the labyrinth path with her finger, while passing time, or pretending to look interested. It just might help her keep her mouth shut (a prop I would appreciate sometimes), or remain calm under stressful circumstances.

So I drafted out a labyrinth which fit the space, thus foregoing the *designing on the fly* quotient of the project. What I failed to do is draft the whole bag front, as it would look with the labyrinth on top of the existing graphic image.

They don't really mesh. It's not bad, terrible, throw up my hands and quit, but not as seamless as I would have liked. I like both images separately, but would have put more detail in the graphic image, so it's not such a stark contrast to the labyrinth.

I love, love, love the labyrinth. I will use it again, perhaps more than once, and in different incarnations, on other bags for the show. I like the idea of it, and the representation of it; more to come.

Success comes in small doses sometimes, and one can build on it. A series allows me to develop an idea to a successful conclusion, even if the first steps are halting. I think it's this focus, and growth through the process, that keeps me coming back for more.

Next: On to the back side, same colors, different image.


Blogger said...

Ah, I was wondering what happened to that project. The labyrinth part is fantastic (I need one of those--for all the reasons mentioned & more, cough). I see what you mean about putting more detail in the diagonal lines. As you said, you could have worked it out fully beforehand, but there's something very valuable and unquantifiable about just doing the thing itself (because it heightens the exploration aspect of the process?)and taking what you get, warts and all. Nothing is ever wasted. It's all good, and it's all connected, and whoever gets that bag, wide stripes and all, is going to be a fortunate person.

2:09 PM  
Blogger dragon knitter said...

i agree with you, that the two patterns do not quite mesh, but it is still very pretty. sounds like very contemplative type work. love stuff like that. it's like knitting stocking stitch, where your hands go on auto-pilot, and the mind wanders where it will.

9:31 PM  
Blogger Holly said...

This is one of those "beauty in the eye of the beholder" things because I have to disagree. I think the patterns mesh really well and I am crazy about the labyrinth. Please post information on it's sale, when it is ready and has been shown. I would be interested!

10:25 AM  
Blogger Sara said...

Holly, you are the reason I *don't* tear things out. People see things differently. *Someone* was bound to like this, as is. Thanks for stepping up!

The show is next June, in Michigan, connected to Convergence 2006 (Grand Rapids). It will be at the the Grand Gallery, which is, I think, in the Convergence hotel lobby. There are approx. 10 weavers in the show, I expect to have several of these bags done for it. I may or may not be there myself, so I may need an emissary to let me know how the show looks!

1:12 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Ah Sara-

I feel less stressed simply seeing it. And then again more stressed since my knotted pile project sits lonely in my fiber collection closet unfinished. I am however a BIG believer in everything has its time. mmmmmmExcuse or reason?


9:17 PM  
Blogger Knitterguy said...

Could you balance it out by turning it upside down so the lighter design is on top, then recreating a light diagonal pattern in a fringe or other edge treatment?

10:05 PM  
Blogger Knitterguy said...

Lisa said: "I see what you mean about putting more detail in the diagonal lines."

I agree with this too. Not being a weaver (yet), I don't know if this is technically feasible, but can you add detail between the lines with another technique? Specifically I'm thinking you could sew on something of interest like small coins or something to create an added geometric design between the lines that could then be echoed somewhere else.

And now I'm going to go and massage my neck because I've made it sore attempting to look at your photo upside down :-)

10:13 PM  

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