Whitehall resident Marilyn Ryan has been weaving for about 15 years. She has made a wide variety of items from tiny sachets to rugs and towels, but her favorite thing to weave is clothing. Sometimes this is as straight-forward as a soft winter scarf and sometimes it’s as complicated as a finely tailored jacket. She works in cotton, linen, wool, silk, and a variety of synthetics. She has even woven lavender and grass and, in one stretch of the imagination, caution tape.
Marilyn learned to weave through an adult education class and has been taking classes and teaching herself ever since. She has gone from working on a simple, small loom on the dining room table to her current large 8-harness loom in her home studio. “Looms are like boats,” she says. “You always want one a little bigger.” Although weaving is primarily a hobby for her, Marilyn spends several hours a day weaving, sewing, and planning projects. She finds the greatest joy and challenge in learning a new weave structure or trying a new fiber.
Recently Marilyn has been using a Japanese weaving technique called Zanshi. It’s woven from many short pieces of yarn, tied together so that the knots show on the front. This cloth is interesting and tactile, making it a look to love!