Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Drafting a Sunshine and Shadow pin loom blanket

If one of the upsides of pin loom weavies is that you get a perfect little piece of cloth with selvedge all the way around, one of the frustrations with pin looms weavies is that you have a bunch of little pieces of cloth that you have to figure out something to do with. And the world only needs so many mug rugs. If you look at a lot of the old patterns-- you can find the original old pattern books from the at eLoomaNation-- you will see that the authors spent a lot of time trying to turn the woven squares into larger pieces of seamless looking cloth, with limited success.

Weavies Sunshine and Shadow

So here is an opposite plan, draft out a Sunshine and Shadow pattern. This pattern, also known as Trip Around the World, is perfect for pin looms. Each square, each color, stands in contrast to the ones beside it. And drafting the pattern is almost as much fun as a coloring book, more if you were never a very good colorer (I could never produce that incredibly even crayon texture like my cousin, Debbie).

My most recent crush is on FREE graphics program called PicPick. Its very easy to use while offering some rather sophisticated features. For example, you can make very complex arrows, example to the left, which I love to do. More to the point, I can pick a color from an endless color scale and, using the little paint can thingy, drop it on to a square, the perfect coloring book! 

Below are some ideas for Sunshine and Shadow blankets as well as an empty grid for an 11 x 11 square blanket, which works out to a blanket of about 45" x 45".

Amish style Sunshine and Shadow with borders.

 You can also try out the larger illustration of a blanket, it has 19 by 19 squares (361 total weavies!) which makes a blanket about 6½ foot square. I got a little carried away with the deep borders, but they look so good. Those heavy borders of teal and red also contradict what I was saying above about the difficulty of using weavies to make a solid piece of cloth. To me, joining the squares becomes the equivalent of the pattern made with quilting. So here are some ideas for pin loom blankets that you can take and make even better by reimagining them with your colors and approaches in mind.

Sunshine and Shadow with 20's colors and style                                      Blues, Reds, Yellows Sunshine and Shadow
Blank template with lots of space around it to add borders.

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