We all love to weave, but sometimes it can be hard to weave.
Sometimes we want to want to weave, but it’s just not coming to you.
We have all been there.
I am assuming that since you are here that you love to weave. If that is the case, it may be hard for you to not feel inspired to weave.
I totally get it.
Breaking your weaver’s block can be a lot easier said than done and being stuck isn’t fun for anyone. Not everything is going to work for everyone and one thing may work one time, but not another. So I have compiled some of the things that I have done in the past to help me break through my own blocks.
That way, we can all keep weaving.
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Re-find your inspiration
More than likely there was something or someone that inspired you to start weaving in the first place. Perhaps it was a specific weaving that you saw, a specific weaver, or a style or weaving. The first thing that you can do is to go back to this and see if it can re-light that fire that it started at the beginning.
Some really great options are to look at fiber art magazines or books. A lot of fiber art books contain how-to information, but you can also find many that talk about weaving in general and historical weavers. Sometimes just reminding yourself about what is really possible with weaving can be enough to jump-start you into your next project.
One of my favorite books for finding inspiration is Beyond Craft: The Art Fabric by Mildred Constantine. It is a HUGE book with tons of photos and information about different weavers and their amazing work. It is a great book to keep in your studio library.
Similarly, if you were inspired by nature then get back into nature! Visit somewhere new or learn more about the area that you are inspired by. Research can be a great way to go deeper into your own inspiration and can help you to take it further. It is one of my favorite ways to find inspiration.
Another idea that you can explore is weaving with colors you don’t normally use (in general or together.) Let your new color scheme inspire you to create something completely new! Perhaps your weaving just needs to be spiced up with some new yarn to get you out of your rut.
(Learn about weaving with color HERE)
Beyond new colors, you can also consider the types of yarns you don’t normally use. Do you like wool? Maybe try cotton! Want to stick with protein fibers? Alpaca is incredibly soft and versatile. There are so many different types of fibers that you can play with and they lend themselves really well to different types of weavings.
If these things don’t work, then you can always try to find new inspiration. Browse through Instagram, read through a weaving website (like this one!), or do some writing to get your thoughts out.
Inspiration can be one of those weird things that sometimes hits you when you least expect it, so just keep your mind open!
Do a weaving challenge
One of my favorite things to do when I am having a hard time weaving is to do a weaving challenge!
A weaving challenge is any set of rules that you can assign to yourself to get you back on the loom. It can be as simple as challenging yourself to weave a few lines per day for thirty days on one weaving. You make the rules. When you are done you will have a finished weaving that chronicles your month. If this sparks something then you can do one for every month to have a visual representation of your year.
You could also make one small weaving a day so that at the end of a month you have either thirty small weavings or one weaving made of thirty parts. I have always found that doing daily challenges works my mind and reminds myself that weaving is a part of my daily life. They say that doing something every day for thirty days makes it a habit!
- try out a new technique each day – different patterns or lace (learn about hand-manipulated lace HERE)
- use an EPI you don’t normally use or try out weft floats
Take a break
Wait, so am I actually telling you to stop weaving? Yeah, if that is what you need to do and sometimes you do.
Maybe that is weird coming from a weaving website, but no matter how much you love to do something – sometimes you need a break. Then you can come back to it fresh.
Your break can either be completely free of anything artistic or trying out a non-woven medium. I recommend trying a different medium first, though, so that you are still flexing your creative muscles.
One of the best things you can do for your block is to not force it. Just because you want to weave does not mean your brain is in the right space for it. Not scientific – just an observation!
Taking a break could mean trying a different type of art or cleaning your entire house. Either way, doing this is a great way to clear your mind and make room for weaving again.
When you try some different types of art then it can break your creativity free after it has been locked up in your mind. Depending on what you end up making, you might even be able to incorporate it into your weaving practice!
– Trying out some knitting? Add it to your weaving.
– Embroidery? Embroider on your weaving! (check out embroidery for your weaving HERE)
– Watercolor? Cut it up and weave it! (check out weaving with paper HERE)
Whatever you do, you might even find that is the inspiration you needed all along. You could also create a weaving inspired by your watercolor painting or try to create the same image in tapestry that you did with embroidery.
Don’t want to stray too far from weaving? Try out a different type of weaving. If you are usually a tapestry weaver – try weaving up some balanced weave or patterns. Create a scarf or a patterned wall hanging. Really just do anything outside your norm.
When it comes down to it, a lot of times breaking your artist’s block just means trying new things and sometimes coming out of your comfort zone. Most of the time you will actually come out the other side of your weaver’s block more inspired and ready to create than ever.
So embrace the block – then break it.
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