Weave, Wove, Wove

Fall colors in Red Cliff

Fall colors in Red Cliff

Doing something daily is meditative, like watching the leaves change colors. Doesn’t it seem like it just happens? One day everything is green and the next – boom: yellow, gold, orange, rust … What if we just sat down and watched the colors change? It would take a long time!

Thanks to everyone who participated in the drawing for a copy of Playing With Paper! Congratulations to the winner, Janet Osborn. Below are the front and back side of Weaving #2 which will confirm your guesses. (I took the photo of the back on a light box. See how the slits are accentuated by light? And for those of you who are really astute, the photo was taken before the little boxes were cut out).

framed weavings


As I’m creating these paper weavings, questions like this come to mind: How can I vary the cut of the line? How can I integrate two papers? How can I weave in new ways? And I always think about ingenuity in the history of craft … like today, when I attempted to weave a really long piece of spun paper into a warp. It was practically impossible (and would have taken too long for my patience level); I gave up and gave thanks for whomever invented the spool!


© 2013 Helen Hiebert Studio, 100 x 100 Paper Weavings, #10, 10" x 8", $100

© 2013 Helen Hiebert Studio, 100 x 100 Paper Weavings, #10, 10″ x 8″, $100

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And it isn’t just about two sheets of paper. I find myself looking through things in the studio, finding odd bits that could be woven into sheets of paper. Sorting through papers again and again, looking for two that go together, inspire me, call out to be entwined. There have been some failures, but I’m trying not to edit too much. Or to think too much. After all, I have 100 days!

#10 is a bit of a cheat. I got this colored sheet years ago from a colleague. It is some sort of plastic (I think she told me that plastic bags were melted down and made into these sheets). The texture of the plastic blends nicely with the texture of this piece of air-dried abaca I had in my sample drawer. When the sheet was wet, I cut it with a rotary cutter and then let it air dry into this shape, which happened to fit this sheet of plastic just right!



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#11 is made from a map (thanks to my son’s art teacher for sending a pile of them home). I had to go to Glenwood Springs last week to have my car serviced and stopped in the local art supply store, The Artists Mercantile & Gallery. I had a lovely conversation with one of the owners and was delighted to find an entire rack of papers in the shop. He orders his papers from Graphic Products, a large distributor of decorative papers from around the world. The colors in this sheet of paper remind me of the Aspen leaves here in Colorado now (although this morning we awoke to 4″ of snow). Can you guess what the cross in the middle of the sheet indicates? Here’s a clue:




© 2013 Helen Hiebert, 100 x 100 Paper Weavings #12, 10" x 8", $100

© 2013 Helen Hiebert, 100 x 100 Paper Weavings #12, 10″ x 8″, $100

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When I lived in NYC, Zelda Tanenbaum frequented Dieu Donné Papermill, where I worked, and created these embossed papers. She made the paper (this sheet is linen, I believe). Then she ran the wet, pressed sheet of paper through her etching press alongside a piece of lace. Zelda made high-end wedding invitations with these gorgeous embossed papers. The green and purple piece is an itajame dip-dyed sheet by Kristoferson Studio in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. You can read more about here process here, and I’ll be featuring more of her paper soon.

Don’t forget to check my pinterest board with images of all of the weavings so far… and here is another board which features places to shop for paper.

Please leave a comment below if you know of other places to buy papers! I’d love to add them to the board.

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About Me

Hi, I'm Helen Hiebert!
I'm an artist working primarily in handmade paper; I write how-to books and make films about papermaking and paper arts; and I love learning about new techniques and methods for working with paper! You can learn more about me at http://www.helenhiebertstudio.com

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