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Loom with a view – the next steps…..

It never ceases to amaze me that even in the middle of Winter, when the bush is dry and grey, suddenly there will be a tiny spot of colour bravely peeping through the sandy earth.

After the lockdown of 2020, I made a very conscious decision to slow down on my travelling and spend more time in this paradise that I am privileged to call ‘Home’.  That was when I decided to start my Patreon page – what a leap into the dark unknown that was!

Now, bear in mind that I am the biggest techno-dunce on the planet, and being just such a techno-dunce, I pressed the wrong button on the website and launched my page long before I was actually ready to. This was a fairly horrifying experience as I had my first subscriber within about half an hour, so I couldn’t even pretend that I hadn’t done it!

In a way, this was a good thing, because I think that if I hadn’t done it, I would quite possibly still be procrastinating about it. What the Patreon page did for me, was show me that putting myself ‘out there’, need not be as terrifying as I had always thought it would be.

It has also helped to keep me really motivated in my weaving. Posting on a weekly basis for both harness and rigid heddle weavers is quite a load, but it certainly keeps me on my toes and has forced me to explore structures and techniques in far greater depth and variety than I would have otherwise.

Our latest Rigid Heddle project on the page is this fulled wool scarf:

It forms part of our exploration of texture in weaving, and was, quite simply, one of the most terrifying weaves of my life! I am pretty conservative in my weaving, and I like things to be technically sound. Well the weaving of this scarf was anything but technically sound – I called it the ‘Gappy Scarf’, and good reason for why…..

Now, the project was planned with a view to heavily wet finishing it, so I knew that it would eventually stabilise, but that didn’t make the weaving any more comfortable! The result though, after being severely mistreated with hot water, and lots of rubbing and scrubbing was quite astonishing – and even more astonishing is the fact that I love the end result, and am contemplating making a second one.

Patreon has taught me a huge amount, and it seemed like a logical step forward to begin exploring the world of on-line learning – what a mine-field! This little exploration started this time last year, when I was “home for the Winter”. …. And it was, to begin with, totally intimidating!

However, the more I thought about it, the more it made sense that this was the next logical step for me to take for a number of reasons. Firstly, it allows me to consolidate what I teach in a live workshop, and secondly it allows me to reach a bigger audience, because much as I love the teaching and the travelling and meeting new and wonderful people, I am after all, only one person.

Going on-line certainly doesn’t mean that I won’t be teaching live workshops anymore – far from it, but it there are always people who, for one reason or another aren’t able to attend one of the few workshops that I can teach in a year, and so this offers a solution to this situation.

The upshot of all of this, is that two weeks ago – give or take a couple of days, I finally published my first on-line short course!!! Nothing fancy or complicated, just a Houndstooth scarf. The point is that I’ve been and gone and done it, and you can find it here: https://brooklands.co.za/workshops-courses/weaving-a-houndstooth-pattern/

Short course number two is already in production and the plan is to have it out there early in July.

Ten years ago I didn’t even know how to send an e mail. I was just a stay at home Mom who loved her craft – just goes to show that life has plans for all of us one way or another.

Until the next time, stay warm and keep weaving!