Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Lent Week 1, The Labor of the Cross

The Labor of the Cross

Taking the Cross
It is the start of Lent, the season that leads to our commemoration of the passion and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus said, "Take up your cross" (Mark 8:34, Luke 9:23). It is not something you go looking for in faraway places. Sooner or later the Lord hands us a cross, and our job is to recognize it. For each of us, there are events that make a difference. The sorrowful mysteries are different for each of us. Maybe it is a meeting with a friend, a lover, or an enemy. Maybe it is a sickness or a triumph. We try to see our lives through the eyes of faith, with a confidence that God in his Providence can draw goo out of the awful and unwelcoming happenings.

Lord, grant me the grace to be free from the excesses of this life. Let me not get caught up with the desire of wealth. Keep my heart and mind free to love and serve you.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, World without end. Amen.

Words from Sacred Space for Lent 2013

For more process images visit Lent Installation for Jacob's Well Church

 I am still trying hard to figure out in words what should be said about this piece. 

Right now I am exhausted......frustrated.....anxious....and excited. Like last year during the season of Lent, I was inspired to make a piece that to my surprise, brought much pain, suffering and healing not only emotionally but physically. It became the most powerful piece I have made so far. During the whole process I strangely felt like an outsider. And I was thankful for the privilege that I not only was able to make it but participate with it. 

Here I am again, my body still aches from the many hours of labor of winding and dyeing and rinsing the yarn a few weeks ago. And now I find myself with this huge task ahead of me, anticipating the pain and aches. I am going to weave twelve scarves in six weeks. But it is so much more than simply weaving these scarves. It is what they represent along the way. Our suffering that became Christ's suffering. The journey and the labor of the Cross. Each week, a new scarf, a new weight to be added  But this journey has hope.....because of His Great Love. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Sick, Fit, Nap and Photo Shoot

Oh...Motherhood. Cora, my six year old, came home from school with a temp and rested on the couch in the living room while her sister threw a fit for an hour because she didn't want to pick up her princesses. After an hour of crying, yelling and rolling of the floor in her room things got quiet. I checked up on her and she had gotten into bed, under the covers and feel asleep. Since I had an open window of peace, I decided to photograph some scarves. I try to do my photographs outside and since it was a cloudy late afternoon, perfect for a photo shoot. Here is a link to my online shop, BillySue Textiles.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Lent Installation for Jacob's Well Church

I cannot believe how soon Lent is starting this year. Ash Wednesday is this Wednesday February the 13th. The church that I go to celebrates this sacred season. I went to church since I was a baby but never knew what Lent was all about. My husband and I have gone to Jacob's Well Church in Westport here in Kansas City for eight years. I am so grateful for the new experiences I am learning. There is a prayer chapel located near the sanctuary where a few of us are helping to create a "Sacred Space" for the Lent season. I am making kind of an installation piece that will be changing weekly. Each week I will be adding a new scarf to the cross to represent the weight the Jesus carried. There will be five scarves that will be purple for the five weeks of lent, one black scarf for Good Friday and one white for Easter. Each scarf will be woven loosely in the middle about 100" and at both 4 yards of fringe that will be draped on the floor. I am not quite sure how it will all turn out but I am excited. Here are some images of the process so for. Two days ago I dyed all eleven pounds, 33,600 yards of yarn. .....I am still exhausted. Purple tencel yarn that I purchased. This is the first time I ordered already dyes yarn. I paid a little extra, trying to cut some time in the dye process. Planning to over dye the warp thread using different shades of black dye.

Measuring out 10 yards of yarn for each scarf
I am also going to dye white for shades of gray yarn. I am not quiet sure how I am going to use it.
I bundled all five warps, each have ten yard warp of purple and ten yard warp of white that are folded in the middle. Making it five yards each to dye. Then I all five bundles of warp in a row, some overlapping a little, to make a seventeen yard yarn "rope"? I am not sure what to call it. I tied a white piece of cotton thread to section off each yard so I know where to put each yard when I was dyeing.
I also winded some single skeins of yarn.
Almost ready to dye all eleven pounds of yarn on this 50degree Saturday.
Time to dye..... I really hate this part.
So unfortunately I learned something about trying to over dye already dyed yarn from a company. No matter how much dye you use, it doesn't "set" into the yarn as well as you think.
Soooooo much of the dye rinsed out. Many hours of rinsing. I am still recovering.
Now drying the yarn. Although I wanted the yarn to turn out darker, this will have to do.
Threading a new pattern on my loom.

Weaving away


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Something Old

In May of 2006, right before my senior year at KCAI, my husband and I found out we were expecting our first baby. I remember the mixture of pure joy and extreme fear at the same time. That summer I took an independent study at school that focused on color study. I dyed more than sixty colors in mercerized and unmercerized cotton and then wove two large panels using the yarn.

I remember during the whole project and especially during the set up on my loom and weaving, how much I thought about this baby growing in my belly. Daydreaming and praying for this child and the change she would bring in my life.

I also remember how funny it was to stand back and look at my work to see how my baby influenced it. They turned out so pastel like(hehe).

For more than six years I have had these two panels packed up in a box. Finally I think it is time to hem the ends and hang them up in their rooms.

Here is an image I took this afternoon of one. I will post more when I install tomorrow.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Two with White

Here are two new scarves that are apart of the series of five that I finished last week at my parents. Both have the same gradation of avocado green to turquoise to purple tencel woven with white merino/ tencel blend interrupted by tencel.

The first five images are of the one woven in a twill pattern.

The last five images are of the one that is woven in a diamond twill pattern.