I’ve enjoyed all the exercises in the ‘Textile Structures’ section of OCA Textiles 1. One exercise involved making a frame and wrapping, binding and interlacing materials in an improvisational way to create areas of solidity and space, light and shade. I made a little frame from bamboo skewers lashed together and using white and natural yarns and threads, traversed the space with knotting, binding and needleweaving. I used a book by Ros Hills – Colour and Texture in Needlelace – to learn some new stitches.

knotting and needleweaving

textile structure and shadows
1, 2, 3, 4

The next exercise asked you to construct a grid, but I used a ‘found’ one – a pallet from one of Alan’s beachcombing expeditions and added verticals of rough macramé jute to weave through and tie to. I wanted something in keeping with the materials I was planning to use to create this textile structure – rope, twine, scraps of balloons from an old celebration, fragments of net, shells, seaweed – the randomness cast up by the tide on a Tiree beach. There’s a little white fleece from the fences there too, and a little dark Hebridean fleece brought back from this woolly place on Mull across the water.


There are some detail shots of the different sections here.

I’d love, one day, to see this beach twine sculpture on the island of Gigha. I did see this dramatic figure at Machir Bay on Islay a few years ago. I love coming across unexpected art like this.

beach woman

tied up in knots

3 thoughts on “tied up in knots

  • May 24, 2010 at 10:37 am

    these are absolutely fantastic!! and the sculpture is a springboard for more. a whole installation perhaps?

  • May 24, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    I agree! The frame is wonderful with its beautiful shadows and I love the driftwood pallet with the woven beach finds. It’s totally evocative of the coast and I can smell the sea!

  • June 16, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    Love you work. I too love unexpected art.

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