Monday


One of the first projects we did at college was weaving. We learnt to set up and use traditional looms (complicated, time consuming and back breaking!), we used peg looms, wove with clay, metal, paper, anything that could be woven was woven. Now the back breaking part aside weaving appealed to the OCD side of my personality, it was tidy and ordered and once you had it all set up you could make some pretty cool things on the loom. 

At the end of term one we had to take one idea or process that we had tried over the last few months and concentrate on it with the aim of producing some samples, or ideas for a finished piece. I went back to weaving. But I decided to try working with electrical wire rather than more traditional materials. I loved the colours and the challenge of being able to create something unexpected out of these cable which have become like Japanese knot weed clogging up our homes and offices. So I spent several back breaking weeks designing and building my own table loom for use with electrical cable and I set about sampling. By the end of the project I had gone through several boxes of plasters, had fingers that were almost purple with bruises from working with such an unforgiving material, and had been for a tetanus jab.


This was my biggest sample. I love the way the different cables have such a great mix of colour in them, and how when the cable is stripped back the metallic core of the wire show through in interesting ways. I had all sorts of ideas for turning it into a wall hanging but once I was done with the bruised fingers and slashed hands it ended up in a box under my desk while I moved onto other projects. But now it is the summer and I still have several boxes of cable knocking about and I am not making a wall hanging but I have been inspired to pimp our garden chairs. 

I bought these chairs at my local hospice charity shop for £5 for the two. They are surprisingly comfy and stable, they are just not our style. I had been staring at the bamboo frames for a while before inspiration struck, I could weave electrical cable into them to liven them up a bit. 
So this afternoon I took advantage of the sunny weather and armed with an afternoon of radio four I set up in the garden to make a start. My poor hands had forgotten quite how unforgiving electrical cable is and I only managed 2 hours of weaving before I gave up. I think they are going to look great but  based on today's progress it may be next summer before I have a completely covered set!

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