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Ruffle Vest

When I was in Japan last May I had a chance to try Kenzo Jo’s special stretchy yarn. I had used stretchy yarn in the weft before, but never in the warp. This yarn is stretched and starched so that you can wind it into a warp like any other fibre. Once you wash the piece, the starch comes out and the yarn contracts making for a fabulous effect.

In this piece, I put this yarn every 5 (or so) threads just in the centre section.


Here is the result before washing…


and after…



So exciting to see the changes!

Then, it stayed in my studio until a few days before the SAORI Kai this past weekend. I needed something new to wear and so it was time for this piece to become a garment. I wanted to feature the ruffles and so I made it into a vest, using the ruffles as a collar, the back yoke and as a feature at the bottom of the back of the vest.



This was so simple to make as it is just two pieces. One piece is the entire front – from the bottom at one side, up and around the back becoming the collar and yoke, and then back down the other side. The back is a piece cut off and sewn to the yoke and the two sides. I sewed this all by hand. After I made it, I realized that it is similar in design to the vest in the Beginner’s Clothing Design book called the Rocket Vest (design #9).



I added a few of “Bob’s Buttons” to finish it off (the morning of the kai!)…


The vest is very lightweight, but warm as all the fibre is a very soft wool from SAORI Japan.

Happy Weaving,

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AiR – the bobbin gathering

After I had gathered up all my bobbins with yarn of various sorts…


I put on a black cotton warp and wove all the colours onto the warp…


Wow – that was more yarn than I thought. Not sure what I’ll make with this – a technicolour dream coat? a colourful skirt or top? Or perhaps it will hang in my studio for a while with all the engery of many weavers at the studio.

gathering-bobbins-3 gathering-bobbins-2

I also experimented a bit with making a ruffle – using different tensions on the warp threads. The right side is a 50 thread warp that was added on the side of a regular warp – and tension on the extra threads was just through clips on the back – and front.


Kenzo-sensei had showed me how to do this when I was last in Japan but I hadn’t tried it until now! This is just a short piece as I had another workshop to prepare for and needed the warp – but I’ll try this again for sure…


Another of my goals of this Artist-in-Residence was to set up a mailing list – which I have now done:

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This mailing list will be used to send out news of new items such as yarns, warp, books, equipment, etc. available at SAORI Salt Spring – so these will be only for shipping within Canada. I will also use it to send out news about Workshops, Retreats and Events and plan to keep my blog for weaving and other adventures. Please feel free to sign up – it also has an option to unsubscribe if you find you no longer want to receive it.

Happy Weaving,

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Christmas Ruffle Scarf

We had a staff Christmas party last weekend and so I decided to weave a quick scarf to wear to it. I have a skirt that is black with a shiny turquoise/green section to it so thought I would coordinate with that.

I put a narrow 50-thread black cotton pre-wound warp on the loom and wove the scarf with a black yarn that has a green sparkle thread through it.

Christmas Ruffle Scarf

When I was weaving it, I wove very loosely, either barely beating the yarn into place or much of the time not even using the beater. It gives it an open & lacy look.

Christmas Ruffle Scarf

After weaving, I pulled three threads in the centre to create the ruffle (this is another reason to weave loosely so that the threads are easily pulled). Then I twisted the fringe, washed it and wore it to the party that night.

Just a note – when you weave the length of the scarf, be sure that you make it longer than the finished length you want it to be, as it shortens when you pull the threads to make the ruffle.

The scarf is featured on the Weavolution Facebook page – here.

Happy Weaving,

My website: