Creative process

The creative process from idea till design

Often people wonder how a handwoven piece of art, or a scarf, cushion is made. When I explain the creative process they’re amazed and surprised about the amount of time it takes to design and make something handwoven. It involves a lot of steps, no matter what I make. 

Nature, Scandinavia, art, travel, 100 year old patterns, colorcombinations, buildings, even a scent….in all of that I find my inspiration for a design. When I design I try to look for a style that is daring, innovative, fun and stylish with a love for traditional techniques. Making a designboard is handy !

The result always has a wow-factor. People often say they recognize my style immediately. It’s colorful, stylish and looking at it makes you smile. I keep an eye on designtrends, but I don’t follow them, I don’t copy a design from others nor will I use colorcombinations because it’s trendy. And when weaving specialists say that something is not woven as it was meant to be…..well, that’s a real creative killer isn’t it ?

Research

Weaving is also about research, which material, technique will I use ? Is there a variant possible ? Will I use only regular yarns like wool, cotton or linnen ? What colors will look good ? Or will I embed leather, copper, alpaca, vicuna, videotape, ledlight into the design? Not everything works well together and sometimes an idea does not look good when woven. That’s why making a prototype is important.

Prototype

Making a prototype is essential for a good product. When the prototype is finished it’s taken of the loom to see how the result is. That’s when I can still make alterations in my design before the final cloth is woven.


Looking at the prototype gives me the opportunity to see which elements from which variant look the best and can be combined in the final version. Elements that will be written out are the used yarns, colorcombination, pattern, technique, design elements, how it was wet finished, do’s-and-don’ts. Sometimes the prototype is not suitable for the project I had in mind, but may be of use for a futur product or artwork. So, not everything in a creative process will be woven.

The creative process and prototyping is very time consuming. Nevertheless I will only weave 1 item. Each item is unique.

Because of the intricate and time-consuming process I cannot produce items at the speed and price of industrial produced goods. Artisanal products, however, are not meant to replace factory goods, but to complete them. 

I’m an artisanal weaver, each item I produce is unique and I’m proud of it.

Ilse