Janet's thread

A weblog, mostly about knitting but other topics appear

Start Your Day……. March 24, 2017

17342655_774545312711136_7201039594426454023_n  Start your day with this beautiful photo of Spring in Ireland – a contrast of green and yellow – thanks to Sarah Rubalcava of Rubalcava Horticultural Services.

Sarah’s mom (and my friend) Magda Rubalcava is an award winning internationally renown tapestry weaver – wouldn’t this make a spectacular tapestry?


I Do Other Things in addition to knitting scarves but … January 14, 2015

You might think that all I do is sit around knitting scarves but quite the contrary.  Actually I’ve joined Facebook and that is a big time consumer.  It is easier to interact with readers through Facebook and also to expand one’s circle of friends, both new and old.  Still, blogging is useful in a different way.         That said, here is Scarf Number 11      IMG_5209   After I finished this scarf I found a small sample I made in a knitting workshop – note that I used similar colors.  I can also think of a rug I wove many years ago and I used a similar combination of colors.  That rug was chosen as a present to the owners of a “magic cottage” down in the west of Ireland.  My sisters and I had a marvelous visit to the cottage in 1995.

p.s. In my ongoing reorganization and tidy up of our belongings and the house, I just came a tapestry I wove when we were in Kenya for the second time (1989-1994)        IMG_5223              IMG_5226     familiar colors?






17 Swedish Designers June 4, 2011

   17 Swedish Designers, all women, touring in the U.S.   This is an exhibition of current industrial design ideas as pursued by 17 Swedish women.  Ceramics, furniture, and textiles, design for everyday use.  In black and white with a lot of bright accents.  This morning I went to a the Nordic Heritage Museum to see the exhibition and hear a talk given by one of the designers, Lotta Kuhlhorn.  Lotta is a graphic designer.  She has quite a range of work, all of which I liked – book covers, designs for kitchenware, designs for textiles.  She has her own firm,  Koloni Stockholm, along with being a designer for IKEA.  Her work, and that of others in the show, made me think of William Morris, Marimekko, and Cath Kidston.  She really likes the styles from the 1960’s – and that made many in the audience feel right at home!  I liked the colourful dress she was wearing – when asked if she had designed it, she replied “no, I found it in a flea market in Stockholm only last week”.  That is just so neat – to be a distinguished visitor giving a talk about a major exhibition and wearing a dress she found in a flea market.  My type of person!!

Here’s another website I found showing some of her work.  I think it’s fabulous. 

The exhibition was spread out over 3 rooms in the museum.  Items very neatly displayed on temporary flooring/platforms.  I was a bit disappointed not to see more in the way of textiles but then that’s my particular interest.  The exhibition as a whole was wonderful.   And here are a few of my photos from this morning.

  these knitted textiles were the work of Ulrika Martensson.

  very strong but in a way muted statements in rugs and cushions

  this photo doesn’t do justice to Lotta Kuhlhorn’s work but I want to include it anyhow

  an IKEA chair and cushion – I am a great fan of IKEA and in fact the chair I am sitting on as I type this is an IKEA chair which I bought for the sheer love of the design.

  some of the people there this morning – you can’t quite see Lotta live but she is in the mural – 2nd from the right

  Lotta live, in the patterned dress with a beige sweater – in the discussion earlier one of the questions was about a favourite colour – Lotta wasn’t sure but did say that one technique she used for getting to like a colour was to wear it for a while.  So here she is wearing beige which she doesn’t like very much but has plans to use it.  I really like her approach!

Another humourous thing that happened this morning was early on in the slide show when Lotta was starting to talk about her work.  She showed a couple of slides of her allotment in Stockholm.  Allotment was a strange word to this Seattle audience.  It was finally sorted out that allotments here in Seattle are called “pea patches”.  I like allotment better.

It was a coincidence this morning that I had a couple of emails about a big exhibition that is opening tomorrow in Kilkenny in Ireland.  An exhibition of work by leading tapestry weavers – all old friends.  Wish I could be there.


When Things Go Wrong May 15, 2011

Filed under: Flowers,Gardening,Knitting,Tapestry,Textiles — Janet @ 12:58 am

I have spent a rather frustrating day, off and on, trying to get the scanner to work properly and transfer some simple images to the computer – work that the scanner usually does quite easily but today I just couldn’t seem to hit the right buttons.  But now, at last, it seems to be working and I have scanned a couple of not very old photos.

  According to the date stamped on the back of this photo, it was taken on May 12, 2000.  That date might be approximate but I know for sure that it was taken in the gardens at Airfield in Dundrum, Dublin, Ireland.   Note all the pretty bluebells (if that is the right term).  Well here we are in midMay 2011 in Seattle and everywhere I look there are bluebells like these.  It’s such a pretty flower – and profuse.

My other test photo for scanning doesn’t  have a date stamped on the back of it but I know it was taken at Airfield also.

  would this field of daisies been later in the year?  One of my favourite flowers.

I miss Dublin but Seattle is wonderful and the month of May is great for so many colourful flowers coming into bloom.  The azaelias are especially spectacular.

  these were actually orange blossoms, the photo was taken last night around 5:30 p.m.  I was on my way up to the Greenwood Art Walk, and particularly The Fiber Gallery, a local yarn store, where a fibre artist friend was exhibiting her work.

  my mode of transport – my bike.  That hill in the direction toward which by bicycle is pointing is steep.  Needless to say, I walk the bike when I am going up to Greenwood.  My destination was  The Fiber Gallery.  (For readers in the wider knitting world, The Fiber Gallery is where Franklin gave one of his workshops when he visited Seattle a few months ago.  I didn’t know at that time how close The Fiber Gallery was to where I live.)

  Ann Maki and her lovely knitted tapestries.  The photo doesn’t do justice to the work but you can get a hint of what it was like.  This is her website.  at the Finnhill Fiber Art Studios.  For my Irish textile friends, think of Gerda Teljeur years ago although here weren’t exactly knitted.   Three dimensional textile art.  I think the 595 Group would like Ann’s work.

Back to the more mundane, I miss the discipline of going to Kilternan Market each Saturday morning in Dublin and the rhythm of the seasons according to the flowers, fruits, and vegetables that were brought to the Market each week, or not as the case might be.  So instead of the Market today, what did we do?  We went out and bought a car – more on that anon.


Two Exhibition Openings May 8, 2010

I have been to 2 Exhibition Openings this past week.  Both events are showcasing textiles by artists working in Ireland.  And each event was excellent.  My only disappointment was that I had nothing on display since most of my recent work is now in Seattle.   Nevermind, the shows gave me a lot of inspiration and I am eager to get weaving again.  And they also gave me a chance to meet up with many dear friends whom I had not seen for a long time.  Plus, it was especially heartening to receive comments like, “Oh Janet, hello, I still have one of your rugs………”  which I like to interpret as meaning I like your work and have fond memories of you.

The Exhibition Opening on Wednesday night was that of the Irish Guild of Weavers Spinners and Dyers, held in Dalkey Castle Heritage Centre.  Here are a few samples from the Exhibition.

  woven tapestry

by Patricia Gellon

  woven wall panel,    paper, cotton        by Monika Auch

  woven tapestry,    cotton, wool, silk, hemp, viscose          by Terry Dunne

On Thursday night, the second Exhibition Opening took place.  This Exhibition was put on by the 595, aka 510, Group.  This Exhibition is in Dun Laoghaire and featured not only textiles but also ceramics and wire and art work in other media.  The Exhibition is in part retrospective and included a number of works which had previously been exhibited elsewhere.

  Orange Peel flowers, in wire     by Magda Rubalcava

  Mother and daughter woven tapestry, wool & cotton warp         by Magda Rubalcava

  Welcome Mat, handwoven rug in Mary O’Rourke’s handspun hand dyed Irish wool

     Butterfly Hunt, wool & cotton warp         by Magda Rubalcava

  Handwoven floor rug, cotton    by Beth Royds


No Excuses April 20, 2010

Filed under: Coral,Crochet,Tapestry,Weaving,Weaving looms,Yarn shops,Yarns — Janet @ 9:14 am

I have no excuses now for not starting my piece de résistance for the upcoming exhibition of the Irish Guild of Weavers Spinners and Dyers.

  here’s my Ashford tapestry loom, still in its wrapper but all ready for easy assembly.  Purchased on our expedition last week to the Yarn Room in Ashford County Wicklow

  and my stash of yarn consisting of purchases from the Yarn Room, and bumper parcels from my friends Freyalyn and Maire.

I have lots of ideas but now the moment of truth has come when I have to put pen to paper so to speak.  However, it’s a beautiful sunny warm morning and I’m off to see the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef.  ((Incidentally, my friend at The Yarn Room has a knitted piece in the reef.)  This should be fun.