Weaving

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.

 

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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!

 

Back in Town; studio is up and running again.

It’s been a while since I last wrote a post on this blog.
I have been busy with a new job and I had to move to another city for a few months, from April to September, but now I’m back again!
Finally back to my studio and, obviously, back to my loom.
I’ve been missing weving and designing fabrics so much! Now that I have some spare time I can focus on my winter collection. I haven’t posted pics on Instagram either and I bet my followers were wondering what I was doing… Well, I can assure you that working for Gucci was a great experience indeed but very tiring as well!
I am looking forward to create an interesting collection of scarves this fall, trying to combine traditional tartan and innovative designs. So many things to do and so little time…
Truth is that I’m still looking for a job, something that gives me time to weave at least on weekends (any advice is welcome). I’m planning to keep running my business on Etsy but I’ll have to work a lot on my brand image and style in order to sell.
Enough with the talk, I want to show you my latest work:

 check my Instagram for updates

and my ETSY shop too

Woven Stories | Collaboration Project with the artist Serena Nello

This month I joined the #marchmeetthemaker challenge (by @joannehawker ) on Instagram. Each day we, the makers, are supposed to post a pic regarding a different aspect of our business: pics of the studio, materials, latest creations, fav things to make, packaging and so on. Day 14 challenge was about “creative friends” so I thought I would share one of my sister’s artworks (Check her Instagram gallery @serenart90 ). While selecting her paintings I found few watercolors that matched perfectly my handwoven fabrics and got super excited! I started taking tons of pictures of my scarves and her works and here is the result:

You can find all my handwoven scarves/textiles in my Etsy shop: MariannaNelloTextile

Studio Update / Back to Rustic Elegance

So, at the beginning of my MA journey I focused on the trends called ‘Rustic Elegance’ and ‘Rough Luxe’ and since then I forgot about those two until few days ago when I was ready to set up a new warp. I’ve been missing those productive days when all I was doing was yarns and pattern research!

I haven’t been experimenting much these past months and I really wanted to try something new so I decided to use a twisted, un-dyed cotton for the warp and raw silk and hemp as weft. I wanted to play with textures and so I tried to create a tridimensional effect using a wooden stick to create small loops. I’ve done this experiment before with different materials and the result was quite satisfactory. From the pictures you can probably see how the pattern is working: it is a simple but asymmetrical check design. Unfortunately, the warp thread was a bit too stretchy so the fabric was bouncing and crimped once off the loom. I’ll probably try to use this woven piece to make a small pouch but I’m not sure about the final result…we’ll see how it turns out!

What do you think? Any suggestion?