It’s just not working – what do I do now? Revising tapestries
With some media, it’s easy to correct mistakes. But with tapestry, if you change your mind about something or realise it is just not working, it can mean tediously having to unweave many days’ or even weeks’ work or having to cut out the offending bit and needle-weave a replacement. Neither is a happy experience.
However with my shaped and layered tapestries, it can be a bit easier. Some of them were based on paper collages, where I would keep revising, adding or subtracting layers, until it looked right. The resulting tapestry would also employ patches, sections of weaving attached to the surface of the main body of the tapestry. But once completed, after I had studied it for a while, I sometimes would have second thoughts. With Golden Section, for example, I thought it needed something. But what? Often I ask for advice, since an outside eye can see more easily. After all, I have been looking at the tapestry for months, both on and off the loom, and you can stop seeing straight.
In this case a small addition to the bottom righthand corner did the trick. The tapestry needed a bit of extra ‘weight’, both in a darker colour and in shape. Easy, once you know what to do.
Another example is Lots of Dots. I didn’t think it was terrible, just that something wasn’t quite right. I decided that the section in the upper righthand corner wasn’t detailed enough, making the tapestry a bit too same-y, so I added a new patch over it. I made the new patch a bit smaller than necessary, so that you can still see a small bit of the original weaving.
Lots of Dots, before
Revising this way is still a lot of work, although possibly not as much as it is for those weavers who work in the traditional way. But whatever way you work and in whichever medium, it is always a good idea to keep looking hard at your work, to see both what is right about it and what could be improved.