Thursday, June 4, 2015

Navajo Weaving Way

I've always had a fascination
with
I have several books on this topic

I read through them often; studying the patterns,
the thoughts behind the weaving,
the path of ancestry passing
from one to another

Oh yes, I've taken many a Navajo weaving workshop--
one with Sarah Natani
I spent a week with Sarah, listening to her lovely Navajo language roll off her tongue;
watch her as she placed the batten in the shed;
under her guidance we warp with handspun wool and wove our pattern in between the threads

I've sat with Sarah as she turned her spindle on her thigh--
there is never a better experience!
Unless............

you take another Navajo weaving workshop
with woolen yarns for weft

Handspun wool for warp

Ahh, yes the pattern looks simple and we
begin

We have woven only 1/4th of the pattern
and it ages.  Why wait?  This workshop our Navajo teacher was Belle Rosing.  Belle concentrated on traditional patterns, such as Two Grey Hills, but also sometimes made rugs with naturalistic animals, such as crows or cows. She was awarded an apprenticeship with Navajo weaver Mary Drake by the Colorado Council of Arts.  Sadly, Belle was taken from us in a 2003 tragic accident.  Belle would say "you must finish your weaving before you begin another".
Okay, Belle--I will finish to begin another!
Life goes on in our weaving patterns to remember those who are present and those who have passed.

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