These textiles were not encountered in the wild. They were part of an organized program, I knew I would be seeing textiles from the collection of Marilyn Romatka. But still, it's hard to be prepared. Marilyn filled a long room's worth of tables with samples from her collection - fascinating, impressive pieces from around the world, old and new. I remained enthralled with one of the first ones she showed, however. It's a yurt band.
These things just thrill me, largely because I want to learn to weave like this, in the terme style of Central Asia. I've done some small samples, with the help of Laverne's tutorials, but I have yet to grasp the all-over patterning, or to be able to copy designs on my own. Laverne's recent blog post about "Length" resonated with me. The sheer yardage of these bands is awe-inspiring. This piece is about 5 yards long, and it has been cut.
Here's another piece that lay near me and absorbed a lot of my attention. It's from Burma (aka Myanmar):
It's a narrow, long piece, used as a belt which is wrapped many times around the body. In the image above, the white section at right is the back of the weaving. Uh-huh. The red work doesn't show up at all on the back. How do they do it? No idea.
(ETA: Laverne has weighed in with her knowledge of the technique and this link to a tutorial - thanks, Laverne!)
And here's the full table, with Marilyn at the far end, standing and explaining. It was quite an overwhelming array.
Between that, and my recent experience with Pinterest, where I've encountered all manner of stimulating and inspiring textile images, I've been thinking I need to make my own collection more visible. I'd love to do as Marilyn did, and bring choice pieces to the weaving guild for show & tell. But I can also share and educate online - and that's what this website is for, after all. At first, with the "textiles" section, I had been thinking I had to get studio-quality, full-view images of each piece, and create a detailed entry with full information. However, I'm seeing the value of glimpses, detail shots and stacks of fabric on my own creative psyche, and I can easily share that sort of thing. So keep an eye on the textiles tab, and I will get to work with tidbits from my collection.