We have a special Guest Post for you from Susan J. Foulkes, who is the author of one of our favorite books, Weaving Patterned Bands. Susan has an upcoming virtual workshop for band weaving for the Braid Society. She is also going to be releasing some free band weaving patterns on her blog throughout the month of May!
Researching band weaving is my passion. I am running an online workshop for the Braid Society on the Braids and Bands io group. We will be weaving narrow warp-faced bands. It will start on Friday, May 1st 2020, and last for three weeks.
In addition, my blog for each week of the workshop will give more band patterns for you to try. The first post will be on May 1st, the second on May 8th and the third on May 15th.
This short workshop will be about the ubiquitous stripe and the narrow warp-faced band. For the workshop, you can use an inkle loom or a standard heddle with a backstrap, a two shaft table loom or a rigid heddle loom.
Simple warp-faced woven bands can be found around the world. They are the utilitarian bands used for ties, straps and belts. They should not be underestimated. The urge to make something that is not only useful, but also beautiful is universal.
There is a long history of these simple woven bands. In ancient Egypt, complex bands were woven. The Rameses Girdle is the most famous. However, in the tomb of Tutankhamun there is a red linen sash woven in warp faced plain weave. The stripe pattern is simple but it was made for a Pharaoh. This is my next project.
This workshop will give you the opportunity to weave examples of simple bands from many countries. These truly are the ties that bind us together as a community of weavers. In Nordic countries, red is an important and dominant colour used in band weaving. Red is visible and dramatic. In Sweden , den röda tråden - the red thread - means something that is at the heart of the matter, its soul. It represents the essence of what binds us together. I hope that this workshop and my blog will bring weavers together to enjoy their craft—our common shared heritage.
Susan J Foulkes