Two and a half years ago, my nephew Jesse married the lovely Trinity. Auntie Annie offered to weave them something for a gift, suggesting such things as place mats, table runner, napkins, kitchen towels. They chose towels. Now mind you, in over thirty years of steady weaving, I’d never woven a single towel, kitchen or tea or fingertip. None. That makes me an anomaly in the world of weavers, and I had no experience and little interest in making such mundane stuff. However . . . .
So I gave it some thought. Quite a lot, actually. It took about two years to have any idea at all of how I wanted to proceed. Fortunately, the starting point was the couple’s choice of colors, which I heartily adore — orange and gold and red. Remember this?
That’s the beginning of putting the 480-thread, 9-yard-long warp onto the loom. Soft, absorbent cotton, lots of it. A long, slow, tedious process. It’s a good thing I love the color!
I had decided that if I could extend into the process of making towels my practice of never duplicating anything, of playing with color and pattern, and designing all the patterns myself, I could produce these durable and functional textiles with a considerable degree of pleasure. And they’d probably look pretty darn terrific.
So here’s your sneak preview of the first four I’ve woven (I’m now on the seventh, but don’t have pictures of more than these) ~
I’m looking forward to seeing these off the loom and (machine) washed and dried; they’re going to be much more interesting than all stiff and under tension as they are here.
There will be nine towels in the group, measuring about 18 by 28 inches — good-sized (I think kitchen towels should Have Substance and not be all wimpy and small). Two will go to Jesse and Trinity (and about time — their first child is due at the end of this year!), and one is reserved for a dear friend in Maine. The rest will be available to the general public (this means you) for thirty bucks apiece. It’s possible to have an Anne Niles Davenport Original for a modest sum — and that’s the final element of my long planning process!