Friday, April 5, 2019

Oh, my!

I have knotted 2-3 hours most days, leading to a lot of progress.

And more

And finally, the completely knotted piece: 7,225 knots!

The next stage will be to cut off both stars and finish the ends.

Amazing: started on February 24 and finished on April 21!

And I have most of the next star designed!

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Spring Break

Oh, my! I really do like how the Blue Star is developing. Knotting a lot more during spring break makes a big difference.

This was from last weekend:

and this one from yesterday:

This morning I started the other two diamond segments. By Sunday, I hope to reach the halfway stage.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Blue Holbein-style Star

This will be a variation of the red star, but with deep ocean blue as the background color, and the star with alternating diamonds. In addition, I’ll be using the tools from a class with Noreen Roberts many years ago.

First, the early rows:

The blue is Harrisville Highland and the white is Harrisville Shetland (the same as the warp. Two rows are beaten down firmly.

I’ve added the border and beaten it with the smaller beater.

Ready to trim.

Note that both hands must be used: one to hold the handles and one be be sure the scissors are flat against the knots.

And the next step is to whack the work with the heavier beater.

It’s being held up for display with the smaller beater.

And in a few rows I’ll start using thee red and yellow of the stars and additional motifs.

I’m really looking forward to seeing the design emerge!

Thursday, August 16, 2018


I've been delighted at the progress of the panel: currently 2,465 knots!

 This was at the 1/4th stage.

 And here at the 1/3rd stage.

And here is the wrong side of the 1/3rd stage.

To my relief, the knotting has not caused hand or shoulder problems--at least as long as my chair is high enough for the table.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Cut Pile Carpet Beginnings

Although there are many delightful videos of people in traditional cut pile carpet lands, generally they are not meant to give instructions for making this type of carpet. Handicrafts A to Z has an excellent series of videos which I strongly recommend. And the cultural ones are delightful!

Here are my basic steps.

1. Warp a loom (ideally, some sort of tapestry loom or other one which will let you create heddles).

2. Weave a header, keeping in mind that the color will show on all edges.

3. If you are working on a medium to large loom, string your wound yarn through a cotton or non-grabby thread above the heddle.

4. Pick up two warp threads (skipping the four warps which will be a selvedge).

5. Thread the short end of your wool between the warps, pointing to the right.

6. Take the short end over the two warp threads.

7. Pull the short end under the left warp thread and up through the center, pulling down so you have your completed knot, then cut the long end.

8. Repeat across the row.

9. Use your weft yarn to make two passes (across, then back again).

10. Whack the weft down with full strength. Do it straight on, not at an angle.

11. Comb knots with a narrow cat flea comb.

12. Use a quilters quarter rod or anything which has a quarter inch edge: a notebook, piece of wood, etc. Keeping it straight against the knots, cut the long knots.


Remember that the selvedge edges need to be woven separately so their height is the equal to the knot row. When you make the first pass and beat it down, be sure to build up the other selvedge before you return to the starting point.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Cut pile carpets

Years ago, I had a workshop in London with Noreen Roberts (whose excellent booklet on how to make cut pile carpets is sadly unavailable), but time went by with too many other distractions. Recently, I decided to get going again.

The Pazyryk Carpet is a cut pile masterpiece from the 5th c BCE, so there's no telling how far back cut pile carpets were made.

More late medieval cut pile carpets can be found in European paintings than in museums, given that the carpets wore out and were re-used as smaller items like bags.

And there are many Tudor ones. I was inspired by the star designs, and created this one:
This will be worked 85 x 85 knots (6 knots or 12 warp threads per inch). I'll work to the center line then will flip the chart. It will be approximately 14" x 14".

Oh, my!

I have knotted 2-3 hours most days, leading to a lot of progress. And more And finally, the completely knotted piece: 7,225 kn...