By Cecil: The Handweaving Process

Back in March, Amanda Stockley came to visit me in my home studio to film me dressing a loom and weaving fabric. It was an interesting exercise that made me look at all the various parts of the process and how to describe them to a non-weaver. I wrote pages of notes on why I weave and what it means to me, which has been made me think about who finds peace with this weird little craft. I met someone at a market recently who knew a few of us and said that weavers were all a particular type of person, which I think is true.

There is an alchemy to weaving when animal or plant fibres are manipulated to create yarn to weave in a multitude of ways which produce a wealth of different cloth. The options are endless, but every choice made when planning narrows down the possibilities. Planning a warp takes a lot of time and calculations. The framework that is set will focus the design and restrict the direction the textiles can be taken in.

I thoroughly enjoy this contradiction between setting myself a tight design brief and the constant desire to subvert this and go off-piste. I think most weavers feel this contradiction and there is a whole sub-section of weave structures that are known as distorting the grid. As a handweaver, the ideal warp is one that I can create vastly different and unique textiles from without changing very much.

I am at my most peaceful when I am weaving. It provides me with a calm and quiet mind that is hard to pin down otherwise. The slow, methodical purpose of weaving allows me to reach a flow state where half my brain is working on the functional activity of lifting each shaft and crossing the warp with the thread while the other half whiles away and gets lost in a dream state of new ideas or working through old problems.

There has been much talk about the nourishing nature of craft and how we are all disconnected from the act of making. We are a species of makers, problem solvers and tool makers. I believe that everyone would benefit from some form of regular creative activity. I read an article recently that said learning a new skill has the most effect on well being regardless of ability. Weaving is my ticket to good mental health, and I feel untethered if I do not have some form of creative project on the go.

Sali Merino Wool Snood
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Sali Merino Wool Snood
85.00

I am pleased to introduce my snoods made from the millwoven blanket fabric. In a bid to reduce waste they are made from the same fabric as my blankets and were designed to minimise fabric waste. They are superb in this windy weather. The snoods are structural and cosy, and I have been loving hiding behind mine.

All of the textiles are designed and sampled on a handloom in my North London home. The fabric is woven in Bristol by a micro mill with only a small amount produced in each colour.

My travels around the UK coastline inspired the Coastal Collection. From the shapes and colours of the beach huts at Whitstable to the textures of the pebbles found on St Ives beaches, the shapes and subtle layers of colour never fail to inspire me.

100% merino wool

50 cms x 80 cms

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Heather Merino Wool Oversized Scarf Blue
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Heather Merino Wool Oversized Scarf Blue
149.00

All of the textiles are designed and sampled on a handloom in my North London home. The scarves are woven in Bristol by a micro mill as part of a limited edition run.

My travels around the UK coastline inspired the Coastal Collection. From the shapes and colours of the beach huts at Whitstable to the textures of the pebbles found on St Ives beaches, the shapes and subtle layers of colour never fail to inspire me.

100% Merino Wool Scarf

50 cms x 180 cms

Woven in Bristol

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Millwoven Silk Eye Mask
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Millwoven Silk Eye Mask
20.00

This collection of silk eye masks are a part of a limited edition run woven in the UK. There are only a handful of each colour made as a reflection of my desire to create unique, heirloom pieces. Each one is handmade by me so there will be some variation in pattern placement.

The strap is 26cms long. If you require longer or shorter straps please email me and, fabric permitting, I will make you one to order. Please note that this will increase the delivery time by a week.

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