I'm Alice Schlein, a weaver and book maker in South Carolina. Occasionally I write about Photoshop, Network Drafting, bread baking, and whatever else strikes my fancy. Thanks for stopping by! Comments are welcome.
Explorations in Double Twill Two-hour lecture at the Complex Weavers Southeast Gathering. June 17-18, 2017, at the Yadkin Valley Fiber Room. For more information on the Gathering, click on above link.
Spin Your Own Yarn Jan. 17 - Mar. 13. Learn to use the simple drop spindle to spin your own woolen yarn for knitting, crochet, or weaving. This hand tool of prehistoric origin is inexpensive, portable, and easy to use. Create a mid-weight yarn suitable for garments, accessories, and household items. Pack all your spinning supplies in a lunchbag-sized tote and take it with you on vacation! Click on Winter Brochure 2017.
The Woven Pixel: Designing for Jacquard and Dobby Looms Using Photoshop® Co-authored by Alice Schlein and Bhakti Ziek. 362 pages, many illustrations. Now available for free download on handweaving.net. The accompanying CD with 1400 pattern presets is not included with the free download, but may be purchased separately. Email me at aschlein[at]att[dot]net for more information.
Network Drafting: An Introduction By Alice Schlein. Break away from the block. Curves for your dobby loom. Originally published in 1994, now available as print-on-demand from www.lulu.com.
A Crepe Is Not Just a Pancake 52 pages of text, b&w and color diagrams, and drafts for multishaft tradle & dobby looms. Many color photos of actual cloth. Methods for drafting your own crepe weaves. Annotated bibliography. Pdf available for immediate download. $21. USD. Payment by PayPal. Email me at aschlein[at]att[dot]net for payment instructions.
Echo Weave Based on the 1996 article in Weaver's, Issue 32. With brand new diagrams and high resolution scans of original fabrics. Pdf available for immediate download. $7. USD. Payment by PayPal. Email me at aschlein[at]att[dot]net for payment instructions.
For a while now I've wanted to do a lampas jacquard fabric with no narrative content, just an overall pattern. The feeling of a calico, or an old-fashioned floral wallpaper design. Perhaps for a book cover.
I started with a loose brush drawing of a single blossom, arranged in a geometric repeat. Here's the initial result.
With this all black warp, the primary fabric is basket weave in black cotton, and there are two secondary wefts: blue silk noil and natural wool/silk. The flower centers are both secondary wefts used together for an intermediate blue shade.
The flower centers don't show up all that well. I'm thinking of changing the color order so that the background is the blue-natural blend and the flower centers are solid blue. We'll see.
It's funny how themes sometimes pair up by accident (or not by accident). Like this one. There's a camellia bush outside my studio door with red and white blossoms on it. When they fall, as they are doing this morning, there is a melange of red, pink, white, gold, brown, all together on the bench. A delicious image of decay.
And the story unfolding on my loom is about birth. It's a transcription of a graffiti I saw on a bathroom wall a few months ago in a restaurant in North Carolina (I don't make these things up).
I've put on enough warp for three shawls after playing around with the silk/wool samples. The first shawl is underway. The introduction of an orange bamboo weft changes the game considerably. As many weavers have found, the color temperatures morph depending on your viewpoint. Here's the web seen from the left:
And here it is from the right:
The almost-white filament silk in the warp is highly reflective, and the direction of the light is very low-angle. Fun and games.
My current favorite vegetable is fennel. I add it to salads, and I don't tell anyone what it is. So far no complaints. The best thing about fennel is the way it looks when you slice it transversely. I think it looks a little bit like an aerial map of a small village. There's the city center with the school and the library, and then the surrounding streets and the little houses…
Outdoors, spring has suddenly exploded. It's actually too warm to walk at midday. Soon I will have to get up at 6 am to walk. But not quite yet.
March is a pretty festive month around here. Three birthdays in the family. We like to celebrate them all at once. The youngest celebrant prefers ziti bolognese, so that's what he gets.