An Unlikely Cure for Weaver’s Block

Marjorie Erickson's beautiful baby wrap design
Marjorie Erickson’s beautiful baby wrap design

Do you suffer from occasional weaver’s block? Where you know, generally, what you want to weave (towels, scarves, etc.) but have no idea what colors or draft? I get weaver’s block fairly frequently, possibly because I am constantly surrounded by amazing weaving and when given so many choices, I find it hard to narrow things down. Currently I’m trying to combat my weaver’s block by rearranging my stash of various cottons to see if a certain color combination will spark some creativity. Often this works; sometimes when I see two colors I might not have thought to pair before next to one another, I get an idea and immediately start looking through my books of drafts to find a design that fits what I see in my mind’s eye.

Unfortunately, over the last few days, instead of feeling a surge of inspiration, I look at my stacks of cones, frown, restack the yarn, and repeat on loop. That is until today. I had a question about the new Baby Wrap eBook, and as I was looking through the pages I spotted it: Marjorie Erickson’s design for a doubleweave baby wrap. The beautiful doubleweave pattern uses only 4 shafts to create a durable fabric with minimal floats.

I took a closer look and noticed the project called for 5/2 cotton. I just purchased a gorgeous cone of plum colored 5/2 cotton that I have been chomping at the bit to use. I also have a shimmery, silvery blue that looks gorgeous with the plum. Suddenly I had my color scheme! I don’t have a baby (and I doubt my dogs would take kindly to me carrying them around in a baby wrap) so I wasn’t going to make the project as written, instead I’ve decided to do a table runner.

While this means I can’t use the pattern as written, it’s easy enough to figure it out. There are 32 ends per inch (16 per layer) in the warp, and 88 threads per repeat. I only have one 6 oz mini cone of each color so I’m thinking I’ll design a skinnier runner that is around a yard long. I figure I’ll aim for around 12” wide, which means, taking shrinkage into account, I’ll do 5 repeats. According to my calculations I will be just fine when it comes to having enough yarn for both warp and width. Easy peasy!

Looking through the rest of the eBook, I can’t help but think how many of the other projects would make excellent runners, towels, or, if woven using different materials, scarves. The drafts are beautiful, and many can be adjusted to weave cloth much less wide than a baby wrap. The projects are all designed to weave up durable cloth, so they would all make excellent table linens. And if you’re not ready to take the plunge into weaving a full baby wrap but still want to make something for a baby in your life, all the projects would be easily turned into baby blankets as well.

Weaver’s block is a terrible thing, but fortunately inspiration can be found in wide variety of places–often where you don’t expect to find it. I know I wasn’t expecting to find the inspiration for a new table runner when I started looking through our Baby Wrap eBook but I found it, and I hope you find inspiration in it, too!

Happy Weaving!

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Christina Garton

About Christina Garton

I'm Associatet Editor for Handwoven where I get to interact daily with all sorts of wonderfully creative people. I'm obsessed with twill and weaving dishtowels, although I'm also in love with deflected doubleweave. When I'm not weaving twill towels, I love to try out new fibers and structures and blog about it as I go!

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