Fashion

Life update….and PATCHWORK scarf :)

I haven’t been posting lately and I also neglected my Instagram page….shame on me!

I used to enjoy spending hours on Ig, posting, sharing ideas, seeing what others creatives have been up to recently…. but right now my free time is limited and i have to prioritize (this basically means that, after a long day at work, I always end up on my sofa watching one or 2 episodes on Netflix). I haven’t been weaving at all since March really….this NEVER happened before! But you know, Italian summer is hot and laziness is contagious, especially when you work full time in another city and you are stuck in traffic everyday for more than 3 hours.

I felt like I needed to write something here to explain my current situation; my job contract ends in September but the company asked me to stay longer (till December). I like the job even though is stressful being a Soft Accessories Product Developer for an international brand. I enjoy the environment and I get along well with my colleagues BUT it is a shameful internship position. I really don’t understand why, at 27 yo, I must be an intern to get a job. Looks like my country has nothing to offer and this brakes my heart. I’ve studied for so long, I’ve been doing my best, went to 100 of interviews and yet…I am never stable for a decent position. Should I give up a job I like, in a well established company just because they won’t offer me a permanent position and a fair salary? Perhaps I should.

Enough with my “life updates”, here are some pics of my latest project: a patchwork scarf! Made combining 3 different patterns and a lot of colors.

This was a striped warp I made for a check scarf for man. Then I decided to weave another short scarf for women, adding different texture and a bit more color! It was initially inspired by spring flowers…but I finished it just few weeks ago! 🙂 Anyway, it is made with extra fine wool (a mix of alpaca and merino wool, super soft and cozy). I’ll probably list it on Etsy in September…when it’s less hot! Let me know what you think about this crazy combo of color and patterns!

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Mood boards and design process

Last post was about my latest collaboration project with DHG.

Today I’d like to share with you some of my mood boards, inspirations and mock ups.

I used to make loads of mood boards while I was at uni, cos I love to collect inspiring pics/images/textures together in one page… lately I’ve been using both Pinterest and Instagram to collect images I like and interesting ideas.  What do you prefer? How do you collect ideas?

 

April Update

Once again, it has been a while since I last wrote something on my blog…

I’d love to write more but I have nothing to say, so I keep quiet. At present I resolved to quit weaving for a few months as I have started a new job (full time) and I don’t have any spare time unfortunately. Even though this job is only a temporary position and although I’m constantly surrounded by beautiful fabrics, cashmere scarves, unique prints and jacquards weavings, I miss weaving so much!

I miss the feeling of creating something beautiful; I miss having crazy ideas and translating them onto woven designs… I miss dressing up the loom and even making warps (which is the part I dislike most).

Anyway, I’ll be kept away from my studio until September.

Here are some pictures of my latest commission, a set of handwoven cushions made with the softest and most adorable yarn I’ve ever woven with…QUIPA yarn from DHG shop. If you saw my previous post, you probably read about this collaboration project. It was hard to weave with this extra fine yarns (a mixture of alpaca and merino wool) but the result was stunning!!

I actually made 4 cushions, 2 squares and 2 rectangles. Two of them will be soon available in my  Etsy shop.

 

Berlin Trip

Just came back from a 4 days trip to Berlin, who would have thought that a trip could be so inspiring??!

I am definitely going to use some of the pics i took while walking on Berlin streets as a mood board and my next collection will be based on tapestry and rugs I spotted in local museums and amazing street art.

I’ve always wanted to visit this european capital and this February I had the chance to  spend some time there. Luckily the weather was good and not too cold, so that I managed to visit more than 11 museums and other must- see spots of the city.

Even though it seemed busy, there were not so many tourist hanging around and it was easy to go from one place to the other without spending hours queuing.

One of the best museum was surely the Museum of Applied Art  ( the Kunstgewerbemuseum), with a nice collection of dresses and accessories dated from early 19th century to 20th century. The section of 20’s fashion was my favorite, with some great iconic pieces (see the pic below).

Pergamon Museum was a great discovery as well, with the stunning section about islamic art that had on display a lot of old handcrafted rugs, definitely worth a visit! Before going to Berlin I was thinking about weaving a rug, after seeing those incredible work of art I am so excited to start working on a new collection: color combo, pattern ideas, designs and style were all documented with my Iphone and I just can’t wait to print them out to create a new mood-board!

Besides Berlin well known wall art, I paid a visit to the Urban Nation Museum, a free entrance gallery that hosts contemporary artists’ works. A really nice space with loads of art pieces from international artists.

Last but not least, the Gianni Versace Retrospective is worth a visit if you are a fan of 80’s-90’s fashion. I’m not a big fan of Versace but at the end of the visit I wanted to buy a vintage shirt so badly!!

 

This is just a short list of places to see in Berlin,

Have you ever been there? What are your favorite places to visit, let me know!

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Lilac Cloud- Wall Hanging

Another wall piece ready to go in my Etsy shop. This one was made using fluffy white and light blue wool (weft) combined with an extra thin wool yarn (in pink, lilac and light purple) used for the warp. I tried to create a bubbly three-dimensional effects with the weft wool, what do you think? (LINK to my Etsy shop)

Barbie inspired collection

On my last post, I showed you my latest collection of handwoven fabrics inspired by girl’s toys. I thought I would take some pics with the finished products and some of my old (favorite) Barbies. The entire collection was woven while listening to P!NK (super amazing) song “Barbies“. Do you like her latest albums? I have literally been obsessed with all her songs for a while now… she is so inspiring for me!

Anyway, I had fun shooting this silly pics in my studio the other day…hope you like them too 🙂

Unicorn Shawl: first warp of the year

Haven’t posted much these past months, I’ve been incredibly busy doing stuff and now I can finally relax and think about some new project for 2018.

I spent December making a top secret collab project with a local mill; the samples are done, packed and ready to be shipped…can’t wait to share with you all the result of this collaboration!

Few days ago I bought some new lovely wool yarns from Campolmi filati (yarn shop in Florence, check it out!) and I just had to try them out immediately! So, I set up my floor loom with this fine, extra warm wool in 3 different colors: a mixture of pink and lilac.

It reminded me of a fairy tale princess’s castle or fancy unicorn hair. I decided to make a shawl for myself as I never weave anything for myself really! The pattern is a combination of twill and tabby weave and I used with mohair as weft in combination with the wool I used for the warp.

After finishing this looong scarf (1,70 m without fringes) I decided to play with the rest of the warp and so I made another short scarf, this time adding some sparkly yarn to the weft combo, and some pink pouches.

This small collection of fabrics is all inspired by fairy tales and little girl’s’ dreams….all the different shades of pink you could possibly imagine were used in combination with super fancy-sparkling yarns. It was heaven weaving all this fabrics.

Here are some pics, what do you think? Let me know!

Advent Calendar part 1

My own calendar; a pic each day to celebrate the best time of the year 😊

Day 1 to 4 https://mariannanello.files.wordpress.com/2017/12/img_8021.movhttps://mariannanello.files.wordpress.com/2017/12/img_8101.mov

To share or not to share your own knowledge? – Dressing the loom

First of all, you all know how much I love to share my thoughts and ideas with others. That’s why I’m deeply in love with Instagram. Thanks to social media I’ve found I huge community of super nice (and extremely skilled) people willing to help and share their knowledge.  Every time I am concerned about something, I share a post on Instagram and get some quick-positive response, isn’t that amazing??! The sad part is that not many people are from Italy (indeed none of my Insta-friend is, with very few exceptions). People from the UK, USA, Australia, Japan…but no Italians out there! I find it so hard to connect with Italian weavers; is it because I always write in english? or maybe because we are potential competitors?

I really don’t know but I noticed that Italians are unwilling to share their own ‘secrets’, their knowledge and the know-how.

Remember my last post about Alpacas?

The two breeders, a lovely couple, have been learning to weave in order to use the Alpacas’ wool they produce. The first thing they told me, once I told them I’m a weaver myself, was: “We asked a few weavers for help but everyone is always reluctant to give us advice”. I was ashamed and seriously concerned about that. They just wanted to know some tips on how to dress the loom quickly and how to bind the warp in an easier way…how could you not help someone who is willing to learn to weave? Why do you have to discourage them? I tried to explain them how I set up my table loom alone, just using water bottles to balance the warp. I’m afraid I failed to explain myself so once back in my studio I wrote them an email adding some pics of the process.

Anyway, this is how I bind a warp on my table loom…in a “super professional” way:

I usually divide my warp in 2 sections so that I have the right tension and it’s easier to balance the warp evenly. The warp showed in the pictures was 390 ends (divided in 2 smaller section of 195 threads each). As you can see I use a raddle to make the process run smoothly; actually, the first time I saw a raddle I was in England, I had never used it before but now I couldn’t live without it! (I don’t think it’s a popular tool in Italy but I’d suggest you to use one, it makes things way easier!). My Ikea bookshelf is essential at this stage, it is part of the process – like it was made for the purpose, don’t you think??. So, this is how I make it…what’s your method?

Ps: If you are an Italian weaver/ creative, prove me wrong! Let’s connect!