the question of pins
It seemed like a good idea to mount my Theo Moorman samplers in box frames, so as to let them be as three-dimensional as they wanted. I googled some key words to see whether I could find some online guidance and — lo and behold — I turned up this post from Meg in Nelson where she reports on a workshop on exactly this topic. I’m not actually planning to make the frames myself, so the part that interests me most is how to mount the textiles and present them in the frame.
Confession: I am completely rubbish at lacing textiles over board. As a result, I hate doing it, avoid practising it and therefore never get any better at it. So I was intrigued that the method Meg used holds the cloth in place with T-pins. I would have taken this to be a preliminary step before lacing, but could it perhaps be the final finish?
I tried it out with a test piece, then I tried it again with the simplest of the samplers.
This reminded me that weaving squares and rectangles might be straightforward, but mounting squares and rectangles is not! At least, not if you want them to appear like squares and rectangles. Anyway.
I’ve been tilting the sampler this way and that to try and decide whether I like the look of the pins. Also to try and imagine whether the pins will actually be visible once the sampler is in a frame.
It has got me going in circles in my head. One line (or circle) of thought is that there is something appropriate about pins in the context of sampling: the test piece, incompleteness, work in progress and so on. But in a frame? Is that a contradiction or a celebration of craft-in-the-making?
Another line of thought says that I am just procrastinating because of my fear of lacing. I should buckle down and get on with it. But then I am also aware of the next step in the process: applying a piece of board to the back of the mounted sampler (steps 5 & 6 in Meg’s post). The pins leave a clear space on the back of the foam board, where the lacing would be everywhere and potentially cause a problem. I don’t want the whole thing falling apart inside the frame.
At the moment of typing this I am in favour of pins and celebrating all that is temporary and contingent about them, but by the time I get to the full stop I may have changed my mind. Anyone care to share their thoughts on the subject? I’d love to know what you think about the pros and cons of pins, not to mention lacing, box frames and other presentational matters.