Most of hand woven orders are customized to some degree. Usually, it's the color palette that's changed. Beyond colors, you can choose the weave, size, and fibers to suit your purpose. I have many yarn sources and it is fun to browse yarn samples, weaving books and my own supply of woven samples. If you are not local, then I work out the design via email with attached weaving drafts in your colors. Large projects always require a round of samples in your fiber and colors. Just remember, that when fitting into your enviroment, color and pattern are hard to match - it is better to think of "echoing" aspects of the environment!
Close Up of Atarah (collar)
My first Jewish prayer shawl has been quite an adventure! I received help from Weavers' Guild of Boston colleague Susan Targove on materials and stripe patterns. The large gamp of weave samples she lent me from which stripe weaves were selected is documented in Interlaced, the Guild's 90th anniversary book. The decorative work required much mulling and sampling to bring Kobi's ideas to reality. There are a couple of interesting relationships in this piece. The letters of the owner's Hebrew name are mapped to a Fibonacci series of stripe widths. And, the corners are the reverse side of the atarah double weave pattern making them unique, yet connected.
The ritual tassles at each corner came from Israel after the tallit picture was taken.
They have thread(s) dyed blue from a specific sea snail that recent research has concluded was the one used
in ancient times. I started with Wikipedia, and was guided to a scholarly book on the subject:
To whet your curiosity, the photo at right is of a 2000 year old fragment with blue embroidery (NY Times, 2/27/2011.)
Credit Zvi Koren
The client saw a mohair throw in rich colored blocks at a friend's house and wanted one like it. I know the owner of the throw and she let me look and feel it. It wasn't made in the US and was of 100% mohair which is virtually unavailable here. But Classic Elite makes Le Gran which is minimal nylon with wool for the core, soft fluffy mohair spun around it, and a good color palette. As usual, not a match, but the look and feel of the original.
This throw is double brushed both sides, yielding a soft, ethereal hand.
The mission of the two wool throws (header photo above) was to extend the feel of the sofa and play down two beloved brown side chairs which were a different style. The sofa had an Asian flavor, with curves and delicate tendrils of vines climbing vertically. To repeat the curves theme, I chose an undulating twill weave with areas of almost the same hue and value and the "vines" which show as gold against red-orange.
Plimoth Plantation is a re-creation of the village founded by the May Flower's first arrivals in 1621. The village period is 1627, just before the founding of Massachusetts Bay Colony which dramatically opened up immigration and trade. In 1627, the village was still quite rude, with one or two room plank houses, smokey fireplaces, and mud floors.
In 2011, Plimoth was in much need of some new handwovens and I volunteered to do the Billington Blanket. Plimoth asked for a blanket that looked like the tiny detail in the period painting, upper right.
The blanket is in single ply wool, woven densely for durability. The colored stripes were hand-dyed by a colleague, Kate Smith, of Marshfield School of Weaving. These blankets were traditionally woven in two panels stitched together down the center.
This hanging brightens up a tall, narrow, dark space. The weave was an easy choice - overshot. When it came to colors, adventurous was the name of the game. Many combinations sampled later, the client chose very traditional dark red wool on a half bleached linen background. 18" x 52"
I wove this runner, which also functions as a wall hanging, for Interlaced, published bythe Weavers' Guild of Boston. The requirement was for an original or historic weave. This weave is a slight adaptation of a c. 1825 coverlet. 16"x42"