Weeks 3 & 4: Chrissie & Gracie fall out

Officially my tapestry is called Maides Coign after the inscription that inspired it, referring to daughters as cornerstones. But I call her Gracie, after the supposed daughter of the man who remodelled East Riddlesden. Up until last Saturday everything was going so swimmingly I wondered what I would blog about. But that was before I began weaving the first of her hands.

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I really didn’t like the shape and initially assumed it was just tricky because it was at the selvedge and I wove it and rewove it at least three times before I realised the problem was not actually the shape, but the colour. It was that damned Ginger of Doom I had such trouble dyeing that was causing the problem – it was too orange and Gracie started to remind me of David Dickinson from Bargain Hunt and once I got that into my head it was not to be borne. At first I tried softening it with other colours but it was only after weaving it another three or so times I realised the only thing to do was to ditch the ginger completely and weave some more colour samples from scratch.

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It was an incredibly frustrating time (you can see some of the wasted yarn from the unwoven hands above), and inevitably I began wondering if I even knew what I was doing. I didn’t help that I was so tired, having been working on the Hanging Tree in the evenings. We’ve also been open to the public this week and constantly dropping my bobbins to chat with the visitors meant I simply did not have the time or space to properly address the problem.

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Eventually I got there, but what should have taken a few hours, ended up taking five days. I am now behind and am working extra hard to catch up. I am learning to rope off my area when I need to focus and I have also done some FAQs to try to take the pressure off a bit. Needless to say the staff at East Riddlesden remain marvellously supportive and helpful.

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I am now very pleased with how she is turning out and we are becoming friends again. I can’t quite believe it is me who is making her.

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A fabulous sight one morning was a queue of ducks at the tea room door – apparently they were waiting for breakfast – I’ll try and get a photograph next time I see them. There are a pair of ducks I am particularly fond of – two male white ones that are never apart from one another. But it seems they too fell out and only one was seen this week, but yesterday there they were together again and seem to have made friends once more – sorry for the blurry pic – I was running for the bus!

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Cheerio until next week. x