I am not good at multi-tasking. When working on a project my default setting is immersed-to-the-point-of-obliviousness, so I am quite challenged by the number of jobs I do. Even in my least busy moments I am juggling three of them: weaving, the teaching of weaving and OU teaching.

But of course each of those categories covers multiple strands of activity, and – while I do try to manage the total number of strands I am working with at any one time – at any moment the Unexpected may land in their midst. For example, the downtime between OU courses seemed like the perfect time to make my submission for fellowship of the Higher Education Academy… and then the opportunity arose to move studio, and it was suddenly all about ladders while I tried to martial my reflections on the process of tutorial delivery online. Switching my attention from one strand to another feels like dragging myself up off the ocean floor. But the studio was moved, the HEA fellowshipped and the illusion of flexibility is maintained for another wee spell.

At the moment I am trying to organise the process of creating work for summer exhibitions around the immovables in the calendar, such as periods of assignment-marking, so I am picking off the preparation in small doses while continuing to work on Arctic Sea Ice-inspired pieces.

There has been mordanting, there has been dyeing.

A couple of days ago, there was logwood.

Today there is weld. All the yarn for the Jazz collection will be naturally dyed. Or naturally undyed, in some cases.

The bright yellow dyepot makes a lovely contrast with the snow outside! But while there are freezing temperatures across Europe, the Arctic is exceptionally warm this winter. I’m glad I have started work on this series.

The latest piece currently looks like this.

There is not much warp left, so this may in fact be the last piece for now.

And all the while new and developing weavers have been sampling, designing, warping and more. In April I am going down to Cumbria to share my workshop on exploring Goethe’s colour triangle, so yesterday I made up the warps I will send down in advance. The saturated colours of Venne’s organic cotton are almost too much for my phone’s camera.

And now I am going to put on my furry boots and go out for a snowy walk before lunch. Got to make the most of a snow day, whatever else needs doing!

Multi-stranding” was posted by Cally on 28 Feb 2018 at

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2 Responses

  1. Sandra Rude

    I need a nap after hearing all the tasks you’re juggling. Your Arctic work is fascinating. It must have been a challenge to design the interleaved peg plan!

    • Cally

      Yeah, the pegplan is a classic case of ‘it seemed like a good idea at the time’! But I am quite pleased with how it is working out, even though it is slow to weave.