Monthly Challenge: Count Down to Mother's Day

Mother's Day this year is May 8th

We have an entire month to make something for our mothers.  Please join us in honoring all mothers - whether they are still with us or not - biological mothers or important women in our lives.

Please join the Monthy Challenge Group, and post your projects and ideas!  We can help each other to get our projects off the ground. 




Posted on Fri, 04/08/2016 - 12:00

I am planning to make two scarves - one for my mother and one for my MIL.  Becaue I do not have a lot of weaving time, my thought is to try bead leno (which based on my recent workshop experience is a quick weave).  I am at the stage of trying to select the yarn I will use.  I am trying to decide between a steely blue-grey 14/2 cotton and a silky 5/2 bamboo. 

Posted on Fri, 04/08/2016 - 17:05

I don't post on here often, but I'm trying to change that!  I have a baby blanket on the loom right now, but I had an idea to make a scarf for my mother and Mother's Day will give me a good push to finish it in time.  I'm planning on 8/2 tencel warp in Birch (kind of a silvery grey) with an 8/2 tencel antique gold as the weft.  I have the yarn already so it will go on right after the blanket comes off.  I originally thought a braided/basket twill but now I'm thinking a little more simple like a diamond twill.  Ideally, I think it should be balanced and really show off the shine of both yarns.  I'd love to hear thoughts on which pattern to use.

Queezle, I second the bamboo for the shine and feel!

Posted on Fri, 04/08/2016 - 18:58

Bamboo it is!  That will also make the project easier.  Happily I have a shipment from WEBS arriving today (their 5/2 bamboo is on sale right now).  I do have to finish my turned Ms and Os project first.  that one is made with an unmercerized cotton warp, and I am on the fence about the weft - hoping there is a bamboo color that will work. 

MPLS weaver - so happy to have you join us and find this challenge useful.  Its rare (for me) to think of Mother's day early enough. 

I was thinking about how this monthly challenge might also be used to honor mothers who are no longer with us.  Tien has amazed me with her woven phoenix tribute to her mother.  While I would never be able to execute something at that scale, there are undoubtedly many lovely projects that could be made to honor one's mother, e.g. make yourself a table runner in your mother's favorite colors?

edited for stupid typos - hopefully more removed than added.

Posted on Fri, 04/08/2016 - 18:55


I got to feel some woven bamboo recently, it is a bit of a toss up, but the bamboo may just beat out organic cotton in my book!!

Your mother's are so lucky. As I haven't warped up my next straight draw weaving, I could still put on enough warp to do a scarf for my mother in law!

Posted on Sat, 04/09/2016 - 14:49

Its Saturday, and hopefully for most of you, this means a little more personal time than during the rest of the week.  Maybe this is a good time to spend a few minutes reflecting on your mother/grandmother/mother-figure, and consider that there is still time! 


Mother's day is May 8th. 


Wouldn't it be an amazing surprise to give a mother's day gift to an influential woman in your life?  Do you have a weaving teacher or work mentor that might deserve a little attention?  


I am going to spend some time this weekend assessing my stash, considering again whether a bead leno scarf is really what I want to make, and working on my plan.  Won't you join me?

Posted on Sun, 04/10/2016 - 03:33

Great idea!! I'm planning dishtowels for my sisters birthday May 5, I'll add extra warp and wrave some for my NBM. (Not Biological Mom). 

Posted on Mon, 04/11/2016 - 19:29

I took this weekend to finish the baby blanket and then plan my mother's scarf.  I sent her a picture of the finished blanket and she commented (for the 3rd time) how much she likes the braided twill pattern.  So braided twill it is!  I wound the warp last night and it's tied and ready to be put onto the loom.  It will be 9" wide on the loom, set at 25 epi with 8/2 Tencel as warp and weft, Valley Yarns Birch as the warp and Brassard Blé d'Or as weft.  The color looks more like an antique gold in person but on their website it doesn't come across that way.  Hopefully I'll post some pictures soon!

Queezle, thanks again for this challenge as it has really got me started early so that I can finish on time.  Usually I'm scrambling at the beginning of May.

Posted on Tue, 04/12/2016 - 03:04

I am terrible at being prepared for this sort of holiday - and then panic sets in that that never helps anything!  I am grateful for having a group to work on this with together.  My turned Ms and Os are still on my loom, but my new strategy is to have the next project planned and warp measured BEFORE the earlier project is finished. 

I have read that Brassard's Blé d'Or is a lovely gold color - its great to get that confirmed.  Your color combination sounds great. 

I am still looking over my yarn stash and thinking about what would be best for my Mamas.  I will set a goal to be measuring warp by the end of next weekend!

Posted on Tue, 04/12/2016 - 21:50

As I am a newbie weaver, I have decided to make my mother and tapestry for her home.  She just turned 71 on April 10th and this will be my first tapestry I will be completing on the rigid heddle.   Wish me luck.  

Posted on Tue, 04/12/2016 - 22:17

You are very brave - I have not attempted tapestry.

Do you have a design in mind yet? 

Posted on Tue, 04/12/2016 - 22:32

Actually,  I am going to do what I  feel as I go along.  I  have not learned how to read the weaving patterns yet.  I'm  still surfing the Internet for an easy learn 

Posted on Fri, 04/15/2016 - 14:34

How are you all doing?  I've had a busy work week, so have made no progress in my mother's day weaving, but I did receive a shipment of bamboo - lots of shades of purple - so I'm psyched to spend this evening coming to a decision.  Do I really like bead leno, or should I do my standard twill?  For me, an evening thinking about weave structure and design is just about the best thing going.


I should also note that this can also be an occasion to weave something for yourself - surely your mother would have wanted you to pamper yourself, and surely all of us have served as mother-like figures for someone (and that is intended to be a gender-neurtral mother-like figure).  And its still not too late to join.

Posted on Fri, 04/15/2016 - 15:30

I had limited time this week to dress the loom so it took a little longer, but I got it set up last night and was able to complete a couple of pattern repeats before going to bed.  I tried to adjust the picture as best I could for color, but it is coming out beautifully.  It almost looks like a piece of jewelry; I know my mother is going to love it.

There was an email from Weaving Today 2 days ago with an article about "Maker Moms" and how they influence us.  My mom is an avid seamstress and knitter so I'm quite certain that's where I get my interest in fiber arts from.  Not only that, she's encouraged (and continues to do so) me my entire life to always do my best.  That's what mothers do, they encourage us to be better versions of ourselves, but still love us for who we are, no matter what.

(and Queezle, I appreciate the "gender neutral" comment... I've found the weaving community to be inclusive on the whole which is really nice!)

Posted on Sat, 04/16/2016 - 01:02

MPLSWeaver, your cloth glows!  I hope you will post the details as a project.  Two repeats could be finished into a beautiful bracelet cuff.  Maker Moms is a great read.

Purple and Gold are both regal colors and they play very well together.  I will enjoy everyone's progress with envy while I work this weekend.  

With Queezle's encouragement, I might have to weave something small for myself.  Might not do it on a loom--a brooch can be woven from thrums on a small matchbox. 


Posted on Sat, 04/16/2016 - 15:42

I lost my mother and more recently my MIL - so this scarf is for me. (Maybe I need a NBM). I am in the process of warping my 8shaft Macomber with 10/2 tensel - double weave Windows - definitely playing with color! I went to a JOY workshop and bought some of their beautifully hand-dyed tensel. I will post once it is warped.

Posted on Sat, 04/16/2016 - 16:05

MPLSweaver - that is so beautiful!  And I like your statement - our mothers encourage us to be better versions of ourselves.  That "maker moms" article is also wonderful - fjacobson shared that article with me.  My mother is a rug hooker, and learned weaving in college.  She is the one who told me to skip the table loom, and that if I am serious I should go straight for a floor loom.  I grew up with embroidery, knitting (but not by me), crochet, and in the late 1960s, my mother made two Norwegian rya-like rugs.  My mother also sewed all my clothes as a child.  And out of five kids, one is also a rug hooker, and I weave, no other fiber arts.

Nancy and Fjacobson - your mothers would have loved to have you make something nice for yourselves.  That is also a wonderful tribute.

I checked with my mother and MIL, and neither one want a scarf.  So I am going utilitarian, and I will weave them dish towels (maybe singlular, depends...).  I spent an hour thumbing through the Strickler 8-shaft book for inspiration, and found an 8-shaft huck pattern designed by Norma Smayda.  I know Norma Smayda, her husband worked with my father, and early in my weaving life my father took me to see her amazing studio.  So for that sentimental connection, I am going to try to use that draft.

Happy Saturday everyone.

Posted on Sun, 04/17/2016 - 15:28

Do any of you have this problem - - - difficulty in committing to a specific weave structure/colorway?  As I thought about the huck pattern I write about above, I realized that there was no way to get plain weave on my selvedges, and that even with a floating selvedge, the edges would be vulnerable to damage.  bummer!  Oh for a 10-shaft loom (slippery slope, that shaft envy).

I then spent hours poring over my 8-shaft pattern book (Strickler), looking for inspiration on line, and thumbing through old issues of handwoven.  I think I have finally decided to do a shadow weave - this used to be my favorite, but I have not done a shadow weave in eons.  What I like about it is that I can play with the pattern to position color stripes that make sense with the weave structure, etc.  So - for the week ahead - I will select my colors, finalize the design, and start measuring.  I will also work to weave off the project on the 8-shaft loom.


Posted on Mon, 04/18/2016 - 19:02

Queezle and Francine,

Thank you for the compliments!  I wish you both could see it in person, it really looks quite lovely.  I have posted the details in the Projects section (along with the draft)

I didn't get to do as much as I would have liked over the weekend (currently at 15" length) but making progress.  We hit 80 F both days over the weekend here in Minneapolis so it was a great time to be outside.

I didn't realize that so much of Joyce Harter's work was centered around here, I will definitely have to check some of it out.  I've been very pleased with the guild here and just how much weaving history is in the Twin Cities.

I hope everyone is coming along on their own Mother's Day projects!

Posted on Wed, 04/20/2016 - 04:02

Hello, all!  I'm making dishtowels for my sister and "adoptive" Mom.  I threaded my loom outside on Sunday, I've been experimenting with wefts.

Please forgive the weird composition of my post, I'm still learning how to make good looking posts with fonts and photos in propers scale.

My inspiration photo:

I want to coordinate my design w the marble countertops


sampling:warp is 20/2 space dyed cotton from Lunatic fringe.  My warp is so streaky,I'm not getting the effect that I had hoped for, so i'm trying to decide if i should use the white weft and have a very very subtle pattern, or the brown weft and have the pattern more pronounced. I'm rejecting the rust weft, I hoped it would look like a copper color, but it looks  red and speckly.  If i decide to use the brown i will have to dye more yarn, (not eager to do that, as i'm not much of a dyer!)

weft- 20/2 white

rust 10/2

10/2 chocolate brown










Posted on Wed, 04/20/2016 - 13:48

Ms T. - somewhere on my computer I have that same inspiration photo saved - thinking it would be an interesting approach for a tablecloth for my dining room. 

As for streakiness/pattern, I have seen examples where people have aligned the colors in a space dyed yarn to make it resemble ikat - that might work for you (unless your warp is already measured out).  That marble has so many great colors - it gives you a lot to work with! 

Posted on Wed, 04/20/2016 - 14:33

msthimble has created an intriguing color study. The small swatches similate effect from further distance. Magnifying them this morning on my iPhone, led me on a surprise trip down memory lane using a minifying lens to look at full size chest x-rays on sheets of film. I am now eager to incorporate these differences in effect into my weaving software based color study.

Thank you also for showing the subtle side of the Lunatic Fringe.


Posted on Wed, 04/20/2016 - 18:06

hi Queezie, I wanted to try false ikat with this yarn, but I couldn't figure out the repeat of the space dye. I wrote to Lunatic fringe and asked for help but they didn't answer. I gave up and wound the warp randomly. I still have a half a cone left, maybe I will try again after I finish this warp. Sister's birthday is coming soon, so I feel pressured to continue with what I already have on the loom.  Xo Gail

Posted on Wed, 04/20/2016 - 18:11

I've seen people wind their warp to do this - they key in on one color change (something easy to find) and align it on each new wrap of the warp.  Its a bit of a yarn & time waste, but what I have seen is that people make additional wraps of their warp yarn around a peg of the warping board just before the actual warp begins - and wrap until that color change sequence shows up.  Does this make sense?  I tried it once, and decided that for me, I would be better off dyeing my own yarn.  I've also successfully applied dilute bleach to a dark yarn to obtain lighter areas, and then manually shifted the warp as I was setting up the loom. 

Posted on Fri, 04/22/2016 - 03:52

Shadow weave, dark blue and white.  I picked a pattern from Strickler, and will substitute dark purple for the blue in a couple spots.  Hearing about the loss of Prince almost made me make the whole thing purple & white, but its not really the colors used by either Mom or MIL.  Will post photos when there is enough light to take a decent one.

Posted on Sun, 04/24/2016 - 03:10

Its going to be tight for me - why did I decide now was the right time for a fairly complicated shadow weave threading???  But I've got 1/3 of the warp measured out, and maybe 2-3h of weaving to finish the orange turned Ms and Os.  Attaching a photo of my warp; its my MIL's colors - crisp white and blue, with a tad of purple.  Warp being measured for mother's day towels

How are all of you doing?  Think you are going to make it??  Running into any trouble?  Do tell.

Posted on Mon, 04/25/2016 - 15:16

Just a quick update, I finished hemstitching and took it off the loom last night!  I stopped a little shorter than I originally planned, but my thinking was that it's not meant to be worn long, and also my parents live in New Orleans so there's not much of a need for warmth. :) I still need to wet finish but I already love the way it looks.  If you hold it one way, you see silver, and if you twist it slightly, you see gold.  It came out exactly as I had hoped for.  I'll take some before/after pictures and post both in the project section.  Now I just need to make sure I mail it on time...

Queezle, I love the color/pattern selection, but I get that you choose a complicated threading. I think we all want it to be extra special for our mothers (or MIL's/NBM's) and go beyond what we probably should have.  Even mine was a little complex but I know how much my mother liked the pattern, so I pressed on.  I'm sure you'll pull it out in the end! :)

I also loved your comment about Prince.  It's been quite something here in MPLS, with many of the buildings/companies/bridges/etc doing "purple" things.  I've been very happy to see that while people are mournful, it's been more of a celebration of his life and work.  I think that's what he would have wanted.  This picture was in the skyway here, the day he passed on.  I love that the city embraced his legacy.

Posted on Mon, 04/25/2016 - 16:02

And so now I know what MPLSweaver means...  What a lucky city to have had such an amazing musician.  Its been a year of losses of many amazing people in music, and to lose Prince so young...

Your scarf sounds so beautiful!  I'm so happy for your mother, and for you - it feels so good to create a thing of beauty for the person you love.

Here in Utah, I've finished measuring out the warp and I'm 80% done with the warp on the loom.  Happily, the weaving goes fast with these turned M's and O's, at least when I avoid mistakes.  And my bright orange color makes me so happy to weave - I never would have expected this emotional response to colors I do not consider to be mine.

My plan is to be warped up by the end of the week (or Saturday), weave all weekend, finish Sunday night.... but in reality I will probably need to send the gifts by expidited mail.  That is OK, though. 

Posted on Tue, 04/26/2016 - 15:27

Yep!  It's a common abbreviation around here, but I'm not sure how well known that is outside of The (Twin) Cities.  There's talk of turning Paisley Park into a museum, maybe like a Graceland type of thing.

Queezle, I totally understand about the color response.  I made a set of hand towels and even as I wound the warp, I was thinking, "mostly white with mint green and light grey stripes? what?" But as I started to weave, I liked it more and more.  

I did the wet finish last night, so now I only have to clip out the joins and finish the fringes.  I've uploaded pictures to the project page, but I'll include a couple here as teasers.  The first (before wet finish) shows off the gold more, the second, the silver.  It's greatly influenced by the light as the first picture was at night with indoor lighting and the second was taken this morning with the overcast daylight.  I like that it looks cooler or warmer depending on the temperature of the light.

Posted on Wed, 04/27/2016 - 20:05

I cleared my previous project, and last night was up late beaming my warp. I always vary my warping slightly, and last night I set up the trapeeze and put a lot of weight on the warp.  I found it very difficult wind, adjusted, etc.  I did end up breaking one warp thread, but happily I realized it, fixed it, and just have to watch for the fix to appear while weaving. 

This morning I got up early, and got a good start on threading the heddles (about 20% of the way through).  It is my great hope that tonight I get the heddles to at least 80% threaded. 

Posted on Sat, 04/30/2016 - 18:45

OK, though I spent my morning correcting threading errors, I think I am finally making progress here.  

Posted on Sat, 04/30/2016 - 23:52

A we turn the calendar page, Mothers Day is only a week away, yikes!  Our local paper has just done a feature encouraging people to give their mother something she will enjoy. The article suggests giving her things she will use in her own hobbies rather than cards and flowers.

Posted on Sun, 05/01/2016 - 00:44

Yes, that Mother's day deadline is breathing down my neck.  Have spent the entire day weaving.  It occured to me that I would have been an awful mill worker, as I seem to need to get up and walk around every 10 or 15 minutes.  But just maybe, my gifts will make it.

Yes, the mother's day card and flower industry doesn't want the word to get out that you can do better!

Posted on Sun, 05/08/2016 - 12:59

... and even if not, what is the spirit of motherly love if not understanding about missed deadlines!  I managed to mail off my dishtowels on Tuesday, and will check in today to make sure the gift recipients know they are loved.  Happy mothers day to all here on Weavo - those who advise us and mother us in our growing knowledge of weaving, who help us with the smallest of problems, and even compliment our weaving disasters.  This is a wonderful community and I feel blessed to be a part of it.

Posted on Sun, 05/08/2016 - 13:23

I did totally miss the deadline, but I know my mother in law will understand I put her son and raising her grandson before this deadline. :)

Happy Mother's Day to everyone!

Have a great day,


Posted on Tue, 05/17/2016 - 17:45

I didn't make a shawl or scarf; however, I was able to create my first pillow.  Notice it is the black and white one (lol).


Posted on Sun, 03/12/2017 - 05:39

Well, its almost a year later and i have finished my warp!!!  WAHOO!!  I made 4 dishtowels, they are off the loom and broken warps are mended.  I have to hem and wet finish.  I'll post photos when they are done, hopefully this week. 

Posted on Sun, 03/12/2017 - 05:39

Well, its almost a year later and i have finished my warp!!!  WAHOO!!  I made 4 dishtowels, they are off the loom and broken warps are mended.  I have to hem and wet finish.  I'll post photos when they are done, hopefully this week.