When I was very young, my parents brought a needlepoint kit back from a trip to France. There were two projects. I ended up doing my own thing, coloring way outside the lines and discovered I liked needlepoint. I was able, over the years of that childhood, to cobble together materials to make my own needlepoint designs.
And then I discovered weaving. There was a rigid heddle loom in a rectangular box in the home goods section of Macy's. I saw it and I wanted it. It arrived underneath the Christmas tree and my brother, who likes to figure stuff out, helped me figure out how to warp this new tool. I was given red, white and blue wool yarn and I wove a scarf with it. Who knows where that is.
I dabbled in weaving and needlepoint over the years until that amazing moment in my late twenties when I discovered tapestry. And let me tell you, like many newbies weavers, I felt like I HAD discovered tapestry. There wasn't the internet, there were not many books or resources, so it was a rather lonely but truly satisfying adventure. It took me probably ten times longer to figure out techniques because in many instances I felt like I was inventing them. Let's be clear, I was. not inventing anything except my own ragged style and perspective.
I sank into tapestry weaving bliss for many years. I would sit at the loom for hours on end. When the kids went to bed, I would weave for hours. When they napped or were in school, I would weave for hours. I spent so much time envisioning designs. I was addicted. I don't know why. It just embraced me and would not let go.
I continued to weave even after founding Mirrix. I also did other things (because I am not a one-medium person) such as spinning, dyeing, kumohimo, embroidery, knitting, crochet, drawing, etc. I even dabbled a bit in needlepoint, although I was pretty over that at this point.
But then something happened. My time got scarce. I signed up for what turned out to be three terms as a State Rep. and Mirrix was demanding a lot of my time as well. Dedicating myself to tapestry of any size slipped into my past. When I did weave, it was minor stuff: endless strips of my hand-painted silk, bead jewelry, smaller bead tapestries. I was spending my time divided among the other mediums that have captured my attention over the years.
"When are you going to weave something other than silk strips?" Elena would ask me. I would shrug, not willing to tell her that I just didn't feel it, couldn't remember what it was that inspired me to sit at a loom for hours on end. I just couldn't find it. I was sad about that.
And then I swam around the fishbowl. one more time and suddenly and my tapestry juices started flowing. I warped the loom, gathered my supplies, put the loom on a loom stand and attached the Spencer Power Treadle (I was serious!) and started weaving. It took about three hours before I got into the flow and then it all came back. I am back. I am back at my loom, I have tapestry back in my head and I am starting to think big. I am back to. tapestry bliss and I could not be happier about it.
Are you ready to start, or continue, your tapestry journey? Download one of our free projects and get to your loom today!