Archives for posts with tag: textile


Installing ‘Full Employment in a Free Society (1944)’ on last Sunday afternoon in the basement of Strutt’s North Mill Belper.


The Belper Art Trail 2013 is on from Monday 8 to Sunday 21 July at venues across Belper and more information about the trail and a trail guide, which lists the 17 artists and the venues for their work, is available from Corridor Arts.

Andrew Martyn Sugars (Corridor Arts) who has curated the trail and Sarah Skinner, the Mill manager, were interviewed in last week’s Belper News (3/7/13) about the Art Trail and my imminent arrival! In the article Sarah said, ‘The Strutt Mill complex harnessed the power of the Derwent to produce cotton thread that wound its way across the world so Tim Shore’s work is really appropriate here, referencing as it does weaving, workforce and mechanisation as well as commenting on the austere times we live in today.’

Here’s a link to Strutt’s North Mill Belper and the Belper News article.

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First test for a larger sculptural weave project, although at the moment there is no weave in it just one continuous piece of weft yarn.

The title is made up of three technical terms from handloom weaving: castle / shed / chain. The castle sits on top of the loom’s shafts and organises the warp thread, the shed is the space created between the upper and lower warp threads and a chain describes how the warp threads are organised in preparation for threading on to a loom. Castle / shed / chain also suggests a hierarchy and metaphor for the organisation, mechanisation and regulation of the early textile mills.

I’ve made a small test model that is sized to fit into my sketchbook. The landscape A4 card folds out to a 90º angle and in doing so pulls the yarn taut. The yarn is held in tension as long as sufficient pressure is applied. I’ve used corrugated card that is too thin and is easily pulled out of shape and I didn’t use a long enough piece of yarn and therefore you can see a knot in one of the photographs. Despite these problems I’m pleased with this first test and will make a second larger version. This project leads on from the preparatory sketch posted under ‘Drawing’ (January 20, 2013).


Front part of red velvet chasuble with pomegranate pattern (close-up detail). Italy: 15th century. 65 x 46 cm. Silk. [SST 129]

The Stuff that Matters
Textiles collected by Seth Siegelaub for the Centre for Social Research on Old Textiles. Raven Row (1 March to 6 May 2012).

The picture and descriptive text above are taken from the ‘The Stuff that Matters’ catalogue. The fabric is velvet not taffeta, but the following description of taffeta, also from the exhibition, is intriguing.

Etymology of the word taffeta.


What remains to be discussed is the etymology of the word taffeta. Without recommencing here the investigation of which the results are consigned in Ménage’s Eytmological Dictionary, we hasten to declare that we share the opinion of Samuel Bochart and Sébastien de Corarruvias, who see in this word an onomatopoeia. Indeed the syllables of taf taf reproduce rather accurately the sound of taffeta when ruffled. In the middle of the 17th century, when one wanted to say informally that a man was very afraid, that he was trembling with fear, one said that his heart went taf taf. Whence, undoubtedly, the argotic word taffeta, synonymous with fear, or fright.

Michel, F. (1852-1854) Recherches sur le Commerce, la Fabrication et l’Usage des Étoffes de Soie, d’Or et d’Argent et Autres Tissus Précieux en Occident, Principalement en France Pendant le Moyen Âge. Paris.