Saturday, July 18, 2009

Summer Reading

Looking for a good book? Then consider this one....

Job well done! My hat is off to the ladies of the Rhode Island Weavers Guild!

Bertha Gray Hayes was an amazing member of that guild and obviously loved to weave and had a passion for overshot. First of all, I must admit that I have to dig deeper and learn more of the overall story but basically weaver Bertha Gray Hayes left behind an amazing collection of 72 sample cards, all her notes and papers to her guild. She had her own sample card stock and each had a lovely miniature sample. The ladies of the guild took all 72 samples, plus an additional 20 they found later and reproduced them here in this book in their entirety. Then they take the samples and had them reproduced in a more modern format using a weaving program, and then presented them...all 92... again. There are historical notes such as Bertha's letters from Mary Meigs Atwater, copies of her lessons from the Shuttle Craft Guild Weaving course of instruction, circa 1939. In short, it's an amazing body of work, both Bertha's collection and the efforts by the Rhode Island Guild to preserve the collection. If you like overshot, miniature overshot in particular and also the past history of weaving revival, then consider adding this book to your library. { I got it for under $30 Canadian! }

So while you are laying at the beach, traveling, in between house guests....pick this lovely book up and enjoy! Weaving titles don't seem to stick around very long so don't delay....

These pictures show some of Ms. Hayes sample cards with her draft and woven samples. The last picture shows how a draft has been updated with a modern computer draft.


You can see by the size of my hand that these are lovely big pictures, good quality paper and a hard cover edition as well.


These pages show some of her early weaving lessons that she did through correspondence.

All through out you can see dozens of hand done draw downs, usually in coloured pencils.
She even played with images for greeting cards. These delightful drawings show some of her 'doodles' and they eventually became reality at her loom and cards in the hands of friends.

So, I'm back to reading further.... and awaiting the arrival of my brother on Monday. I might be able to squeak in some weaving today. We are having a heat wave here and the studio is so much cooler! We've had 2 or 3 days of rain in the past six weeks.... very dry here!
Hope your summer is a good one and for our friends 'down under'....our turn for wool sox and drinking a hot toddy is coming...

12 comments:

Cindie Kitchin eweniquely ewe said...

this is a great book, isn't it?!!

charlotte said...

What a lovely book!

Theresa said...

Oh, thank you Susan for the great info on this book.
I'll have to put it on my list!

Sunrise Lodge Fiber Studio said...

Thanks for sharing!

Benita said...

I sent my check to them today for this book. I have actually gotten to hold that larger set of hers with all the real, live, woven samples when I was helping to sell items from an estate for the estate manager. And I own the smaller set that I found in an antique mall a few years ago (and they had NO idea what they were selling because I paid something like $10 for it). This book will be something to treasure and explore as I increase my weaving knowledge and experience.

Lynnette said...

After thumbing through the book at your house, I got on line and ordered it.....it's just a great book with some wonderful patterns that could be reworked into my new favourite Echo Weave....

Life Looms Large said...

That is such a beautiful book, isn't it? I've seen it at our weaving guild meetings and at NEWS. The Rhode Island guild really did a great job getting it published.

Thanks for helping to spread the word about it!

Sue

bspinner said...

I was doing to well and not ordering any books from Amazon until I read your review on this book. What the heck you can never have enough books, right? Can't wait to get it.

Marissa said...

I've ordered this book and am hoping it arrives before I leave for my 2 week vacation at our mountain cabin. I have a loom set up there and have decided I want to do samples with Tencel. Thanks for showing us some pictures. Now I'm really excited and can't wait till it comes.

deborahbee said...

I was so taken by your description of this lovely book that I ordered it straight away. It arrived this morning and its delightful. Thank you so much. What is more there is an illustration of a letter from mary M Arwater to Bertha Gray Hayes mentioning my gt Gt aunt Mrs Fulleylove (for those who don't know I weave on her Bergman!) I don't actually understand the reference to the 'little loom' but I am thrilled that she was known by these eminent weavers and that I am in some way in relationship with tyhem through my Bergman

Susan said...

I must say a big thnak you for all the comments on this post, especially the ones where you have taken the leap and ordered the book! I'm sure you will love it as much as I do.

Deborahbee: Wasn't that a real gem finding her name in there? I can well imagine the pride you feel as you weave on her loom!

Susan

Janice Zindel said...

Thank you for posting about this book, I wasn't aware of it, but it looks like I'll be adding to my weaving library before long. Really beautiful!