I first became aware of SAORI while cruising weaving websites. I was on the verge of buying a Schacht loom which is the only loom I have ever used. I took one class in Asheville, North Carolina at Sutherland Weaving with Karen Donde. I made a lovely scarf for my husband and I knew that when I retired I wanted to learn more about weaving. The time finally came in 2013 when I retired from my web design business.
The thing that grabbed me about SAORI was the loose attitude. Nothing is a mistake! After 18 years of precise HTML code you can imagine how refreshing that is! However, I was somewhat worried about the complexity of weaving that I encountered with traditional approaches. Maybe it is just my kind of brain, but I really had trouble figuring out how all those threads going this way and that were going to make a cloth. I started to delve into learning to read the weaving patterns and kind of got it but still felt intimidated.
Then when I saw how casually people were using the SAORI loom I felt so relieved and knew that it would be perfect for me. I admire complex patterns done by traditional weaving but i also love the idea of just making it up as you go.
SAORI is also used as therapy for children and adults with physical or mental challenges. I love the way David, a stroke survivor, described SAORI weaving in the video below:
It's improvisational. It's a combination of Jazz aesthetic and Buddist aesthetic mixed together. You concentrate on the present moment and as the design comes to you, you put it into the weave. It's sort of like life. You can only see the little bit that is in front of you. At the end you unroll it and you can see the whole thing and the parts in relation to each other.
BINGO! What a great way to start retirement!
This blog will be my reflections on the SAORI weaving process-both the successes and the challenges I run into. I can't wait to get started.
December 9, 2012