Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Inge Dam, Master Weaver

Inge is like a "best kept secret"....  well, its time to spread the news about her wonderful blending of ancient  card or tablet weaving with more modern looms and breathtaking fabrics.  I had seen her work and even tried my own take on her unique cloth but as nice as it was, it paled in comparison to hers!

Fashion Show coat by Inge Dam

Detail of Fashion Show coat

 Inge actually inserts card weaving with a conventional warp on the same floor loom. So you must be familiar with card or tablet weaving AND floor loom weaving. Judging by the fabric above, she is also at home with a dye pot too.

Now what would motivate her to do something like this? Well, that's where we share a love of historical textiles.  I love reading about ancient discoveries and the scraps of textile found in the various archaeological digs around the world but Inge took it much, much further!   From her bio at her web page :

I have been weaving for 31 years and in 1992 I completed an in-depth study for Ontario Handweavers and Spinners to become a Master Weaver. The subject of the study was Iron Age Textiles from Northern Europe (the Iron Age was from 500 BC until 800 AD). In the course of my study, I became interested in tablet (card) weaving. In excavation of Iron Age sites in Northern Europe (particularly in peat bogs and graves), ancient textiles have been found with tablet woven borders. Through inspiration of these textiles, I now incorporate tablet weaving into my fabrics by weaving the tablet borders and bands simultaneously with the fabric on the loom. I also make unique jackets and bags from my leftover handwoven fabrics.
And wow does she ever make unique fabrics!

At the Theatre Shawl by Inge Dam  (32 shaft twill)

Close up detail of shawl

This method intrigues me! So when I heard that Inge had written a book on her method, I was eager to get a copy. It combines many techniques and clearly Inge has mastered them beautifully.

I have been reading her book slowly and carefully as I really want to try this for myself. Its become clear my first place to start is with tablet weaving basics. To simply dig them out and start fresh.  Once I have my projects complete for the coming Christmas sale, I plan to get out the cards and thread them up.

Inge's book is well written, very clear instructions and many photographs and diagrams to refer to.  That will be a big help once I take the step to progress to something like this:

At the Theatre on the loom

If you are looking for a unique Christmas gift for a weaver, or for yourself, you find all details on this book at  Inge's web site: www.IngeDam.net   A visit to her gallery is a wonderful browse!


Unknown said...

Wow her fabric is amazing, that book is definitely going on my christmas list. Thank you for sharing!

Dianne said...

What rich fabric, wonderful colour. I'd really like to learn to use my cards. One day it'll happen.

Sarah Nopp said...

It is a lovely book. I am very happy I bought it as a Happy Whatever Day gift for myself :) One day I hope to actually see the work up close, maybe even take a class, but until then, her photos and book will have to suffice.

Susan Harvey said...

From Carol of the Tuesday Weavers:

I just saw your comments about Inge Dam. You hit the nail on the head!! I'd never heard of her til Midwest in June. I was blown away by what she does. I think if she's teaching at the next one, I'll take her preconference class. I don't think I would weave as intricately as she does but just knowing how it's done would be awesome. I did order her book as soon as it came out but haven't had time to look at it much.
Thanks for writing the column about her. More of us need to know about another possible way of weaving!
Tuesday Weavers

caracolina said...

I took Inge's class at Intermountain Weavers and was very impressed. She's a great teacher.

Cindy Jean said...

I just came upon your post about Inge Dam. I was able to take her class last summer and learned a lot. I am planning my first project using her techniques. Her book is wonderful and is a step by step of her workshop. She is an excellent teacher with great patience for her students.