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July 27, 2021 newsletter

Pretty Pansies

New Colourway for Huck Towels

There are people in your life that stay near and dear to your heart long after they’ve passed, and Granny Pam is one of those people. She was lovingly known to my kids as G.P. and was one of my first students when I moved to Salt Spring 33 years ago. She was 70 when she took her first class with me and she wove until she was 94. In her last decade of weaving she had difficulty making warps and choosing her colours, but she wanted to have something on her loom at all times. So I started to make her warps, one every week. She didn’t want long warps, just long enough for a few pieces so she could stay busy warping her loom. She loved the process of dressing the loom.

Early on I learned that Pam liked strong colour….she would call pastel warps ‘insipid’ which always made me smile. To this day, every time I make a pastel warp I laugh and tell myself that GP would insist it was ‘insipid’.

Jane and Pam, 2011

One of our favourite kits is the Huck Towel kit designed by Arlene Kohut and seeing that it is Lace year at School of Weaving, we thought it would be fun to reissue it in a new palette. So guess what, we chose GP’s palette from our Boucle Towel Kit! There is nothing insipid about these colours 😉 There are a riot of purples and pinks drifting off to pale orange which remind me of a bed of pansies. Elizabeth was given the task of adding more Huck & colour sequences to the pattern and voila Pretty Pansies….GP would be proud. 

Design for Weavers:
Colour Theory & Practice – Part 1

Colour is my day long obsession, joy, and torment.
Claude Monet

Colour is the child of light, the source of all light on earth.
From “Colors: The Story of Dyes and Pigments”

My weaving colour choices are an emotional response, a response to some stimulus that has moved me—a flower, a painting, a picture in a magazine. I see something that I love, and then I interpret it in coloured yarns.

Sometimes I’m right, sometimes I’m wrong; sometimes it looks stunning, sometimes—less stunning. But the great thing is, there’s always more yarn and there’s always another opportunity to try again and make it better. You can watch me in Season 2 – Colour & Design on my School of Weaving videos as we explore colour theory throughout 10 lessons.

Talking Colour

Colour is a big subject, and it has a vocabulary all its own. In designing, I work most with three aspects of colour:

  • Hue
  • Value
  • Saturation


Hue is easy. It’s what we naturally think of when we think of “what colour” something is: red, yellow, blue, green, orange, purple.
Another way to think of hue is where the colour sits on the colour wheel:


If you were a painter, you could easily achieve a wide range of colours simply by adding black, white, or grey to your hue. This changes the lightness and darkness of a colour. This changes its value, which is the lightness or darkness of a colour.

If you add white to a colour, you have a tint:

If you add black to a colour, you have a shade:
If you add grey to a colour, you have a tone:


A hue at its purest and clearest, as it would appear in the colour wheel, is said to be at its maximum saturation.

As you add grey to a hue, the hue becomes more desaturated—making it less clear and more muted. In the picture below, the outermost ring is the pure hue at its most saturated. As you move into the centre of the circle, the colour becomes increasingly desaturated.

Watch for next week’s newsletter when I’ll lead you into actually applying this colour theory as you develop your own weaving style.

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July 20, 2021 newsletter Maiwa

Maiwa Fundraiser

Abalone & Ebony Tea Towels & Scarf

Treat yourself to a project that will have you mentally wandering a west coast beach. Something catches your eye; you pick it up, turn it over see the beautiful colours of abalone sparkling up at you hidden inside a clamshell. Look closer and you will see that it’s framed by the ebony black of the outside of the shell. As you know, I love anything that is nicely framed   🙂

We are delighted to once again bring you a beautiful “Pay What You Want” pattern to benefit the Maiwa Foundation and this one, Abalone & Ebony Tea Towels & Scarf has been created by Barbara Mitchell. If there is one thing that Barbara and I have in common it is the urge to just play at our looms to see what will happen. Barbara started off with the plan to “play” with Bronson Spot but, before she even got to the point of winding her warp, she thought … what if I layer it with Log Cabin – and the magic began! She has created a canvas for you, so you can wonder “what if?”

Barbara has generously shared this amazing draft to give us another opportunity to work towards our goal of helping the Maiwa Foundation.  The Foundation is supporting many artisan groups across India who are currently suffering due to the pandemic.  A special group that Jane knows and loves is the Artisan’s Alliance of Jawaja (handweavers and leatherworkers) who are being particularly challenged during COVlD, and we’d really like to continue supporting them during this difficult time.

All proceeds from this pattern will be donated to the Maiwa Foundation.

Abalone & Ebony Tea Towels & Scarf Patterning

With this towel each square has 4 quadrants, each different depending on float colour, background colour and direction of Log Cabin.

Lace Unit profile with Colour & Weave effect! This third towel is woven alternating two colours over and over creating that beautiful Abalone effect 🙂

This towel is uniquely layered with Log Cabin squares. Each woven in a different colour and framed with the black and white dividers.

The Bronson Spot Log Cabin Scarf woven exclusively in JST’s hand-dyed 2/20 silks in Ariel’s Voice, Starfish & Lime light.

We’ve Put The Kit Together!

This kit is now available on our website to purchase. Your kit will weave 3 towels and 1 scarf when you add a skein of 20/2 silk or, if you prefer to just weave towels, you have enough to weave 5. This is a 4-shaft Bronson Spot pattern with a weaving width of 19.5″.

Each Abalone & Ebony Kit includes:

  • Weaving instructions (including draft) plus:
    • 6 cones of 8/2 cotton, 1 cone each of:  Bleached; Black; Medium Blue; Magenta; Pale Limette and Limette

You will need to purchase 1 skein of silk for the scarf (not included in the kit). The colours used in the scarf were: 

You can choose 1, 2 or all 3 for your scarf 😉

More Pay What You Want Pattern Downloads!

At a price that anyone can afford…you choose how much!

All proceeds of each downloaded Pay What You Want pattern to benefit
the Maiwa Foundation

Inspiration From a Sari

Mai-what-ta Lovely Towels & Scarf

Tea Towel Time with Jane

Stash Crackle Pop

Here to help

You can always find us on the Jane Stafford School of Weaving Forum or

on Weave with Jane Stafford at Ravelry.