I remember sitting on the bus from London to Winchester on my way back home after a busy day sucking up art exhibitions in various museums and galleries around London. It was part of the studies for my MA in art. It was late in the evening usually I would had taken the train back home, but this time it was the bus. I was sitting up front and a woman older than I sat beside me. We started talking. She was a part of a gang. A ringer gangs. Us ringers. I had never encountered anybody who was a real living RINGER. But she was. She rang church bells in various churches in some gangs. Depending on the church the number in a gang varied as each church had different numbers of bells.
She had just been ringing somewhere in London where they had been short of a member and she had stood in to help them ring this day. Usually she had a certain number of churches that she rang with her ringer gangs in Hampshire and in other counties nearby.
I find this fascinating. To be a ringer.
My lonely work in the loom doesn't include a gang. Only when I am warping, which happens once or twice a year, I summon a gang. Some of them are experienced others are novices but they have to do the work properly and they always do.
Their task is to hold to the warp, with an even tension while I warp the loom. They sit on the floor, and of course I allow pillows under their sensitive bums, and they have to keep an even tension in spite of being of different build and strength.
The are like the gang of ringers. They have to be in tune.
When I was studying weaving in Finland decades ago, we the students at the weaving school had to help each other with the warping. The person who owned the warp had to provide cake or biscuits with that day's coffee brakes. We drank a lot of coffee and being in Finland that was a serious matter the coffee drinking.
I have continued the custom of paying my gang with coffee, tea and cakes of various kinds. Not beer as somebody suggested to me yesterday.
I like this custom of mine. It reminds me of some of the best times in my life when I lived in a small Swedish speaking town in Finland and studied weaving. I experienced one of the coldest winters for decades, drank a lot of beer and knitted in the disco because it was warmer there than in the little apartment I rented.
More weather more clouds
Being besotted by Shetland as I have read a blog by a knitter inspired by Shetland, who's knitted cap design was in a BBC series, about a police that is situated in Shetland investigating a lot of murders being committed there, I decided to spend time on a lonely beach today. It did the works. I am thrilled and my mind is buzzing with ideas. Have to sort them now, i.e. the ideas.
Veðrið - The weather
I have been pondering about the weather. The clouds, precipitation or not. What feeling or how the weather affects people. The autumn here in Iceland usually has a diversity of weather. Really calm days at the beginning of this autumn that I feel we haven't had for a long while on the southern part of Iceland. After the calm days have been the showers of rain. I think they are different from the showers we had before and same goes for the rain this summer. More drizzle than proper rain and then the drizzle is so fine that it is almost like fog but falls in flashes like showers of rain. Showers fall out of visually interesting clouds, I think.
Ég er mikið að velta fyrir mér veðrinu. Skýjafari, úrkomu eða ekki. Hvaða tilfinningar eða hvernig veðrið hefur áhrif á mann. Haustið hér á Íslandi ber yfirleitt með sér ansi margbreytilegt veður. Í byrjun haustsins voru stillurnar sem að mér finnst við ekki hafa upplifað lengi vel hér á sunnanverðu landinu. En í kjölfari stillanna eru skúrirnar. Mér finns eins og þær séu öðruvísi en forðum sama er að segja um rigningar í sumar. Meira er um úða heldur en hellidembur. Úði svo fínn að jaðri við að vera þoka, næstum þokusúld sem skúrir. Skúrir steypast úr skýjum sem eru sjónrænt æfintýri, fyrir minn smekk a.m.k.
The spring piece actually is very summer like lying on the lawn on this overcast day.
Just finished it completely. It is not just the weaving that makes rag rug but also the cutting of rags, and the finishing after it escapes the loom. Not to mention all the thinking and planning it takes to realize an idea that is in my head.
Vorverkið er ansi sumarlegt þar sem það liggur á flötinni á þessum skýjaða degi. Var að klára það. Það er ekki eingöngu vefnaður sem gerir svona teppi heldur einnig vinnan við að klippa tuskurnar og svo frágangur teppis þegar það er laust úr viðjum vefstólsins.
VANTAR gular og lillabláar/ fjólubláar gamlar notaðar bómullar flíkur til að klippa í tættlut og vefa teppi úr. Ég á nóg af öðrum litum en þessa tvo vantar svoldið af. Rósótt, köflótt, einlitt, röndótt og svo framvegis. Hægt að senda mér línu gegnum heimasíðuna ef þú lumar á tuskum í skáp sem þú vilt losna við.
WANTED yellow and lilac old worn cotton garments to cut to pieces and weave a rug from. I have plenty of other colours but these two are needed in different shades. Floral, striped, of single colour and checked patterns are fine. You can send me message through the website if you have rags in the closet that you want to get rid of.
This spring I have been working on a farm, weaving and combing goats on another farm.
The colours in the spring piece are the ones springing out of my mind when looking out on the horizon or scrutinizing the vegetation.
The goats were combed for their soft undercoat called cashmere. Their cashmere is not first class but it is lush and beautiful in spite of that and the goats look classy when they have been groomed.
The spring piece in my loom keeps growing and is more than 2 meters by now. It started with the yellowish grey and is now in the bluish dark grey of the sky.
You can see from the May and 30th of April blog how the rug started out.
Þetta vor hefur verið vefnaður, sveitastörf, sauðburður og kembing geita.
Fiðan er dásamleg af geitunum þó svo hún flokkist ekki sem fyrsta flokks efni. En geiturnar verða svo fallegar eftir kembinguna.
Vorstykkið í vefstólnum er yfir 2 m að lengd og hefur ferðast frá gul gráu yfir í himinblátt og svargráblátt.
Litir vorsins þetta árið eins og hugur minn upplifir það.
Það er hægt að skoða í færslunum frá maí og 30. apríl hvernig það byrjaði.
Spring - Vor
Spring is here! This year I find it almost unbelievable that it really is so. As age proceeds time seems to gain more speed with every week I live. It seems it was autumn just a week ago. But oh the colours the colours of the preciously frail spring. I have set them in a strict pattern but the colours are softly lingering on. Combination of the strict and the free. I have not had time to organize a Gálgaknit event this month that will be over tomorrow when we embrace 1st of May. But Gálgaknit will be there where it is needed sooner or later.
The blasted road is where it is now. Strange however how conveniently the road is in the part of the Lava where it is now called Garðahraun or Garðalava. Authorities have their ways.
Tommorrow on the FIRST of May will be a green and red march that begins at Hlemmur in Reykjavik and proceeds down Laugavegur to Ingolfstorg and the green part will end on Austurvöllur where we shall plant thousands of green flags.
More here about the march
Þegar aldurinn færist yfir þá líður tíminn hraðar með hverri viku sem líður í lífinu. Mér finnst eins og eingöngu sé liðin vika frá því að það haustaði. En þessir stórkostlegu litir vorsins. Ég er með skarpt mynstur í vefnum en á móti eru mjúkir litir vorsins sem að síga áfram í dreglinum. Það hefur ekki orðið mikið úr Gálgaprjóni upp á síðkastið vegna anna annar staðar sem hafa verið skemmtilega og nytsamlegar annir.
En Gálgaprjón á eftir að mæta þar sem þess er þörf. Bévítans Krimmvegurinn í Gálgahrauni er kominn. Merkilegt að það skuli hafa verið svo hentugt vegstæði akkúrat þar sem að yfirvöld kjósa að hraunið heiti Garðahraun.
Á morgun er 1. maí og mun gangan vera rauð og græn að þessu sinni. Hefst við Hlemm og áfram niður Laugaveg að Ingólfstorgi. Grænu göngunni lýkur á Austurvelli þar sem þúsund flöggum grænum verður stungið niður.
Meira hér um gönguna
Weaving - Að vefa
Eftir að hafa mest verið að prjóna náttúruverndartrefilinn er ég komin í vefstólinn aftur. Held áfram með sama þema og í haust gallabuxur og boli, en stærra verk í þetta sinn. Á eftir að ákveða endanlega stærð. Með teppinu er ég að hlusta á bók eftir Henning Mankell sem heitir Pyramiden. Sem sagt komin í hellinn og er hamingjusöm.
I have mostly been knitting the nature protection scarf lately. But now I am back in the loom. Same concept as this autumn jeans and Tshirts but the piece I am making will be larger. Haven't decided how big. I am listening to Henning Mankell's The Pyramid. I am back in the cave and very happy.
Busy days in the studio
Cutting rags, talking on the phone and weaving. And not to forget: listening to audiobooks. In short: enjoying life!!
Anna María Lind, MA Textile Art Winchester School of Art.