Friday, May 16, 2014

From Mary M. Atwater ...

I was just reading these wonderful paragraphs this morning in the book I bought at last weekend's Sheep & Wood Festival. The book, if you recall, is Mary Atwater's "The Shuttle-Craft Book of American Weaving". Since the book was copyright in 1928 and 1951, I suspect it will be ok for me to quote a bit. These words tickle my fancy... especially the last few phrases ...

"The old patterns are curiously like music; like little melodies of four notes, full of runs, trills and returns. When noted down on paper they look like music, so that one feels it should be possible to play them on a violin or to sing them. There is a story of a new weaver who had a loom but no pattern draft, so threaded her loom to Mendelssohn's "Spring Song." And perhaps some day an American composer will write a "Weavers' Symphony" with "Whig Rose" or "Pin Bloom" for motif over the whirr of the shuttle and the dull thump of the batten for accompaniment--embroidered all over and in and out with the weaver's thoughts, gay or sad or contemplative.

"Many of us--most of us, perhaps--still feel happier and more comfortable with the simple old patterns than with the exciting new ones that, though sometimes very beautiful, are often extremely hideous, and almost always slightly insane. It is a matter of taste.

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