Stories from the weave studio – December


Last hydrangea bloom

The midwinter solstice on 21st December came just a couple of days after the full cold moon, the last full moon of 2021, which also brought the first hoar frost of the winter. Bright blue skies and the world transformed, magical and glistening. The ground at my allotment was covered by a crisp frozen shell. A last hydrangea bloom shone out like a star, and the dead grasses and seedheads were dressed in silver.

The longest night was clear and bone cold, and familiar constellations vied for attention in the spiralling sky. Gazing upwards into the night sky somehow magnifies the loneliness and fragility of earth, so small and insignificant in the vast vacuum of space. On nights like this, I feel very conscious of the constellations rushing and whirling through space in their continuous lonely dance across the heavens.

The Dog, and the Plough, and the Hunter, and all,
And the star of the sailor, and Mars,
These shone in the sky, and the pail by the wall
Would be half full of water and stars.

Escape at Bedtime by Robert Louis Stevenson

New work – paper weaving

In the spring of 2022, together with six other weavers, I will be taking part in a group exhibition at the Katoendrukkerij in Amersfoort. I’ll be displaying new work drawing on the history of the building and its current use as a block printing workplace and heritage centre. Currently on my loom is a series of smaller woven pieces – experimental samples using hemp, linen, paper and synthetic space-dyed yarn in the warp and handprinted, handmade papers in the weft. Intrigued by the history of the Katoendrukkerij (cotton printing factory), which was originally a woollen mill, and its location in Amersfoort, I abstracted an image of an antique map of Amersfoort from the 17th century, and made a very rudimentary block print using balsa wood. My crude attempt only serves to highlight the skill of the craftspeople carving the original block prints in hardwood. So far I have an interesting collection of samples on which to base my final work.

New collection of scarves

Reflections in a still canal, and leaves caught before they sink and decay. Colours ripple on the surface: sky, tree, leaf, bird. All these colours and textural effects are stored in my visual memory and resurface on the loom. This month I decided to challenge my usual colour choices by making up a lambswool warp using an almost fluorescent lime green, chamomile pink, moss greens and sky blue warp. Limiting my colours to six and then randomising the order in which these are threaded onto the loom gives rise to serendipitous patterns and effects in the weave. By further varying the weave pattern, I can create an individually unique, yet still coherent, series of designs. The effects achieved echo the complexity of colour in nature. Nothing is flat colour, everything seems to be composed a myriad of different shades and hues.

Honeycomb weave

A favourite weave pattern of mine is the honeycomb weave. This sculptural weave works well when using very contrasting materials in the warp and weft, for example, very fine yarns in the warp combined with very thick threads in the weft. There is a huge amount of depth in the resulting material. The pieces below use the hemp, linen, paper and synthetic space-dyed warp together with vintage newspaper (left) and recycled string (right). Once off the loom, when the tension has been released, the individual cells become even more pronounced.


Ending the year with a holiday in the UK has been a real pleasure – some time to relax, restore, renew. The pandemic has meant that social contacts have been very limited, but it’s been relatively easy to find space and solitude in the beautiful countryside in the local area. At one of my favourite National Trust properties, Calke Abbey in Derbyshire, the gardens are quiet and ready for the new year to begin. Signs of fresh growth are still few and far between, but nature seems poised in her slumber, ready to burst into life now that the days are getting longer again. The threshold of the new year beckons.

Calke Abbey doorway

Until next time…

Trees in winter have a stark beauty, etched against the sky. With all their leaves gone, their structure is exposed, fractal, but strong, not vulnerable.

The wet dawn inks are doing their blue dissolve.
On their blotter of fog the trees
Seem a botanical drawing.
Memories growing, ring on ring,
A series of weddings.

From Winter Trees by Sylvia Plath

For the time being, I’m enjoying winter walks amongst the woods and hills, and preparing to return to my studio in January. My paper weaving is waiting for me there – slow, fragile, patient work for a new year.

Bare trees against the sky

Stories from the weave studio – November


Tree over canal in Haagse Bos

November has been a golden month – the woods are filled with yellow, gold, ochre, acid lemon, russet, umber, and sap green. Glorious colours that are now fading to more subdued greys and browns, highlighting even more the remaining leaves that still cling to the branches despite the recent windy weather. Autumn sees deciduous trees preparing for the cold months ahead – “an expression of death which is also renewal.” As the temperatures fall and the day length shortens, the trees reduce their production of chlorophyll, the pigment that makes them green, revealing the underlying reds, golds and yellows of the carotenoids, tannins and anthrocyanins. The tree withdraws the vital components and chemicals it needs to photosynthesise to store them before dropping its leaves. We are rewarded with a glorious riot of colour, heralding the onset of winter.

Autumn colours

During November I’ve made up two new warps to make eight scarves in total. I’ve felt a need to work in bright colours, and was very inspired by the blazing colours of the smoke bush in my garden. During the summer this bush is a beautiful rich purplish red, but in autumn it morphs into a dazzling array of oranges, reds, yellows and rich plum. Using these colours as inspiration, I put together a warp made up of gradations of colours, from rich chocolatey browns to soft marshmallow pink, glowing oranges and hot pinks. I place the colours intuitively as I make up the warp. This one uses 15-20 different yarns across its width, mostly Merino lambswool, grown in Australia, which is where the Geelong sheep breed thrives best (it’s not suited to the damp Northern European climate), and spun in Denby Dale, Yorkshire by Z. Hinchliffe and Sons. I’ve also used some ‘dead stock’ or surplus waste yarns, and knitting yarns to add interest and texture. Each of the four scarves woven from this warp uses a different pattern or material in the weft, so each one is completely unique. Using the lambswool, I can play with the interactions of the different colours, as the Z. Hinchliffe lambswool comes in a huge range of colours. A chunkier version uses softest Alpaca and organic wool from Sesia, spun in Italy and grown according to GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard). A third variation uses slubby natural silk and linen in the weft, which gives a scarf with a slightly heavier drape.


The second warp is a reworking of a sample woven a couple of years ago, with gradations from mauve to brown to fuchsia to grey to brick red. Colour and textural inspirations came from the dogwood leaves and stems captured on a windy outing to the National Forest over the half-term break.

These scarves are available in my shop on Etsy at LiminalWEAVE.


I’ve begun to explore my visits to the Orford Ness nature reserve off the coast of Suffolk through markmaking using mono print, acrylic paint, crayon and graphite. I’m drawn to the wildness of the place and the dark nature of its past, being used during the Cold War for ballistics testing and surveillance techniques. The colours and freedom of the marks represent the spirit of the Ness, a windswept stretch of shingle and saltmarsh at the mercy of the tides, brooding under the dark skies. This colour palette has also crept into my recent yarn purchases – beautiful steely greys and blues in hemp, cotton and wool.


The Haagse Bos is a wooded area of predominantly beech trees, right in the centre of The Hague, hemmed in by heavy traffic on all sides. I walk there almost every day, and the ebb and flow of the seasons grounds me and maintains a much needed contact with nature. As the climate changes, the seasons alter and the temperatures rise, beechwoods are slowly, imperceptibly migrating to cooler climates. As one tree dies, another springs up ever so slightly further north. It’s sad to think that in the future this oasis in the city might not exist in its current state.

Haagse Bos dark tree trunks

Robert Macfarlane’s “The Wild Places” sets out to discover the wilderness that still remains in our crowded and overly managed natural environments, in his case Britain. His writing vividly conjures up the beechwoods, forests, summits, saltmarsh (Orford Ness) and holloways (ancient pathways worn into the land itself over time) he visits. Ultimately he concludes that wildness is all around us – you just have to look for it; nature is never far away.

In a similar thread, I recently enjoyed reading “The Overstory” by Richard Powers. The title alludes to the part of the forest that protrudes above the canopy, but could also be interpreted as the encompassing motive that links the characters in the book who come from different walks of life and ultimately brings them all together. It tells the life stories of nine humans who all have a unique relationship with trees, either through tragedy or salvation, and who come together to become environmentalists and protect what is arboreal. It’s a thought-provoking book and leaves a lasting impression.

Until next time…

I have fallen back in love with weaving this month, settling into the rhythm of the process. As I weave, I’m constantly thinking of the next piece that will take shape on my loom, and different colour combinations begin to form in my mind. November is coming to a close with wild weather: storms, hail, lightning and rain. Leaves tumble in eddies ahead of the chasing wind, their glowing colours bright against the darkening pavements. It’s a time to be out in the weather, embracing the storm and confronting the cold. Events in the wider world are threatening and unpredictable, and nature is a force to be reckoned with, but is a constant that has a quiet strength. I wait to see what December will bring.

Limetree leaves

Stories from the weave studio – October


Blues skies and vapour trails

Crisp mornings, blue skies and vapour trails. The world is opening up again. A reawakening of the need to connect with people and places. The once empty skies and roads are busy again after what has been a moment of respite for the natural world. Sometimes the frantic pace of the morning rush hour catches me unawares and can be overwhelming after the quiet times of lockdown. However, I can recognise in myself the need to reach out, to reconnect, to see loved ones and seek out different vistas.

Open studio

Early October saw me opening my studio as part of The Netherlands Weefnetwerk ontmoeting (‘meeting’ or ‘gathering’). It was a great opportunity to meet other weavers and to share my knowledge and skills with others. It also was an opportunity to tidy my studio (much needed!) and re-evaluate my more recent work, to consider the direction I want my future work to take. Thank you to everyone who came to see me.

Mixed media work

As part of my creative practice, I’ve been continuing to explore colour, form and texture through mixed media work, monoprinting, drawing and collage. New colour combinations and compositions are emerging.

Work of others

Visiting other artists’ studios is a real privilege and insight into their work. The open studios event that took place recently in The Hague gave me the opportunity to visit a number of artists and craftspeople working in the Spanjaardshof. The building itself was inspiring, with its fading splendour and elaborate tiling, and it provided a wonderful backdrop to Angeline Dekker’s site-specific installation, as well as work by Jurjen Ravenhorst, Derek Wel Bergen and Anne Rose Regenboog.

English tabby weave

I recently bought “The Weaving Handbook” by Åsa Pärson and Amica Sundström. This book is invaluable as both an introduction to weaving techniques, giving ideas for projects, but also has a very useful library of weave patterns with corresponding images showing how the resulting fabric will appear. Useful for both beginners and more experiences weavers. It has led me to explore a new weave pattern: tabby weave. One of the simplest weave structures, I have reinterpreted English tabby using varied textures and colours, including multiple yarns, to create ombré effects in the fabric. These lambswool and silk pieces are destined to become scarves (available on LiminalWEAVE).

Interior fabrics inspired by Scottish coastlines

Using the softest organic wool and alpaca blend ‘Echos’ by the Italian company Sesia, whose yarns are produced with organic blends certified by ICEA (Italian Insitute of Ethical and Environmental Certification) according to GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) standards, I am in the process of creating a new collection of cushions. These will soon appear on Masters and Crafters and LiminalWEAVE. The colour palette is inspired by the coastlines of the Isle of Mull, one of the Innner Hebrides off the west coast of Scotland. The blacks and greys of the sea-battered rocks, the gold and ochre of the seaweed, the white beaches and the tufts of pink flowering sea thrift come together to form a restful contemporary series of pieces.

Until next time…

This month has seen me rediscovering the sense of inner peace that the act of weaving brings, and I’ve started both to follow new threads of ideas and to revisit old ones, such as the reworking of an older sample piece – the new piece is taking shape on the loom (image below). The creative flow that I was missing over the summer has returned and I can’t wait to delve deeper. October is my favourite month, poised on the edge of the renewal that winter brings, with its wild windy weather and glorious raging colours as the trees withdraw into their dormant phase. I look forward to seeing what November will bring as the winter months take their course.

On the loom today

Stories from the weave studio – September

A new season

Sketches detail

September has seen a return to school, routine and time in the studio. There is a change in the air, a crispness to the mornings, and it’s been one of those glorious summery Septembers – warm days where everything seems to be preparing itself for a new season, with autumn just around the corner, a final fling before the colder nights arrive. The autumn equinox has meant a shift in the light, with darker mornings and night falling sooner.

Returning to the studio, I have some sketches on my wall from earlier this year that are providing inspiration for new work. Using a combination of collage, mono print and drawing, I explore new ideas, and pattern and colour combinations in this way. While contemplating these, I have also taken time to finish work left on the loom before the summer holidays began. This is something I find helps me get back into work more quickly after a period away. A warp already on the loom, in this case one of mixed linen fibres, that I have had time mull over in the back of my mind so I can immediately return to the rhythm of the weaving, selecting colours and finding the creative flow to finish pieces. The result is two linen, lambswool and shantung silk scarves. The warp was originally used for a commission, also a scarf, but the additional two (below) are now available in my online shop LiminalWEAVE.

Collage, sketches and mixed media: developing a design

My inspiration comes from many sources: nature, architecture, materials, textiles… and all these are pulled together through sketches I make, usually spontaneously and quickly. Collage is a fantastic way of working as elements can easily be moved around to experiment with interactions between colours, textures and patterns. I sometimes manipulate these sketches digitally to create repeating designs which lend themselves to developing an idea for a design on the loom.

I have some new yarns to work with: the softest organic wool and alpaca blend ‘Echos’ by Sesia from Uppingham Yarns. Organic Sesia yarns are produced with organic blends certified by ICEA (Italian Insitute of Ethical and Environmental Certification) according to GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) standards. Sustainability and traceability are extremely important to me, and I am trying to incorporate more of such materials into my work.

I’ve already begun to combine these exquisite yarns into an exclusive collection of cushions for interiors – a new collaboration I’m working on.

Interior styling: By Ten Creations

It’s been a real pleasure to collaborate with By Ten Creations, who have a number of my cushions, woven in locally grown wool, and woven art wall hangings. Intent on creating a restful and meditative atmosphere in the home, their beautiful photographs represent perfectly the carefully selected items and artisanal one-off pieces stocked in their online store. Here are some of their recent images that perfectly sum up their signature style: effortless simplicity rooted in nature.

Colder mornings

Inspired by the winter landscape of de Vlietland, a wetland area near my home in The Hague, I have created a number of cowl scarves for those chilly mornings. The colours echo the dried reedbeds, the bare tree branches, the water and the dogwood stems flaming red in a weak winter sun. Again, these cowl scarves are available in my shop LiminalWEAVE

Woven art textiles and exhibition: capturing memories

This piece was recently on show as part of the WEEFNETWERK exhibition (17-26 September, Steenfabriek at Gilze, The Netherlands). Woven in vintage maps and mill-end yarns, it repurposes unwanted yarns and attempts to solidify the memories carried by the materials. The exhibition was in an atmospheric, beautifully restored brick factory in Brabant, in the South of The Netherlands, and the exhibition included an extensive and diverse selection of the work of the many talented weavers who make up the ‘weaving network’ here in The Netherlands.

Honeycomb woven paper map

Until next time…

Here in The Netherlands the warm summer weather continues, but the leaves are already starting to take on their autumn splendour, and the nights are drawing in. I look forward to see what the new season brings, and hope to see you here again for my next blog in October as I continue on my journey through the ever-changing year.

Hydrangea blooms beginning to fade

Stories from the weave studio: August

Time out

Calgary Bay sunset

A perfect evening at Calgary Bay on the Isle of Mull, Scotland; the sea like a silver mirror and the sky turning pastel shades as the sun sets. The sound of the waves and cries of oyster catchers at the edge of the water. A gaggle of Barnacle geese pass overhead, looking for grazing in the nearby fields. A moment of calm. Earlier in the week, the first evening of the holiday, I sat out late, watching the stars appear until the sky was full, and wished upon shooting stars, space dust that fell as the Earth passed through debris associated with the Swift-Tuttle comet precipitating the Perseid meteor shower. Across the valley, Tawny owls call to each other, beginning their nightly hunt. This holiday was a much-needed haven of inspiration and restoration; a time to visit family and friends after almost a year of absence, and a time to travel, to reconnect with those special places that brings silence amongst all the noise.

After almost a year of restricted travel, I feel lucky to have been able to return to the UK during August, to see family and friends, and to holiday on the Isle of Mull; I feel recharged and ready for the colder months. The value of being able to travel, to explore and experience different places is vital to the progressions of my work. August is a month where not much weaving happens, but I have some exciting projects beginning to take shape, and after a month away from the loom, I’m itching to get back to it. 

Yorkshire Sculpture Park

The Yorkshire Sculpture Park is one of those special places. A place for art and nature to coexist in the rolling parklands that surround Bretton Hall. I first discovered YSP whilst studying in Sheffield in the early 1990s, and wandered amongst the Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore works that sit so comfortably in the Yorkshire landscape. The walk around the perimeter and up to the Longside Gallery passes works by Andy Goldsworthy, with views out towards Emley Moor. Inside the gallery, with its changing collection, I found, among other work, pieces by Rachel Whiteread and Alice Channer – whose work I was later this month was to discover at Orford Ness.

The Isle of Mull: a special place

Mull and Calgary Bay have become a part of my life. First discovered while on a cycling tour of the Hebrides some 15 years ago, Mull is somewhere I have returned to almost every year now. It has witnessed first me, then me accompanied by my children, who have played happily on the white sands of Calgary Bay each summer and have also grown attached to this place. The colour and textures, the light, the wonders of its nature, the ever-changing weather, the feeling of being exposed to the vastness of the Atlantic. These are all a part of its magic.

Tobermory, the largest settlement on Mull, is home to An Tobar Arts Centre, cafe and gallery. In the gallery at the time of my visit was a collection of screen printed textiles by Eve Campbell exploring the shapes and patterns of the ‘cultural landscapes’ in the Hebrides, and inspired by the intricate patterns formed by the marks of nature and by the island’s inhabitants over thousands of years. This was accompanied by a fascinating collection of aerial photographs of stone fanks, or sheepfolds, on Mull, Iona and Ulva, by local Carolyne Mazur. These structures are scattered across the island, and illustrate changes in crofting and farming life over the last 200 years, themselves becoming abstract images perfectly capturing the colours and atmospheres of Mull and its sister-islands.

Orford Ness: nature prevails

I recently visited the Orford Ness Nature Reserve and former military testing site on the Suffolk coast, UK. Managed by the National Trust, nature is regaining its hold on this very special piece of coastline, a constantly shifting spit of shingle and salt marshes formed by the prevailing northerly wind. During the 20th century, and especially the Cold War, it was used to test aircraft, communications and weapons. The now eerily abandoned structures are submitting to the onslaught of the weather and flora.

It currently hosts ‘Afterness’ – an exhibition of new artworks by various artists in conjunction with Artangel. ‘Lethality and Vulnerability’ by Alice Channer, housed in The Shelter, is a writhing organic structure that escapes its space through the windows of the building, echoing the brambles and other flora that are consuming the manmade structures.

Black Beacon, originally constructed to develop radio systems for marine navigation, houses the ‘Library of Sound’. This collection of archival sound recordings captured on Ness by Iain Chambers, Chris Watson and Brian d’Souza morphs the sounds of the spit into atmospheric music.

This exhibition requires commitment – a long walk, as the artworks are installed on the far side of the spit, which can only be reached by booking a boat via the National Trust. This unsettling yet beautiful place will surely find its way into my future work. 

‘Ness’, a novella/prose poem by Rob Macfarlane and illustrated by Stanley Donwood, tells the story of a salt-and-shingle island where the land is coming to life to reclaim its own. From the book:

Listen. Listen now. Listen to Ness.

Ness speaks. Ness speaks gull, speaks wave, speaks bracken & lapwing, speaks bullet, ruin, gale, deception.

Song of Ness, the drifting song, the final song …’

The bomb is buried beneath more layers of moss, more layers of moths.

The ferro-concrete is experiencing uncontrolled ruination.

Willow flourishes as forest, elder jungles each dip, each hollowness.

The falcon is bearing the day away.

The foreshore is moving as if it were alive, because it is alive.

After moonrise. Long light. Low sun. Slow dusk.

Shingle hush from distal to Ness.

Woven art textiles and exhibition: capturing memories

Weaving purely as an art form, creating art pieces intended as wall art for interiors, has been a focus of my work this year. It enables me to experiment freely and work with unusual materials. In July, I finished a second collection of wallhangings, and some of my work will be displayed at the upcoming WEEFNETWERK exhibition (17-26 September, Steenfabriek at Gilze, The Netherlands). I’m currently looking for more opportunities to exhibit my work.

Three Peaks map handwoven in honeycombe

New palette and future work

For September I have a new palette of colours to work with. I’ll be working on a new collection of cushions and soft furnishings. I’m currently having a sale of older designs, scarves and cushions, in my online shop LiminalWeave.

Until next time…

Here in The Netherlands it feels like summer is mellowing into autumn, and dusk falls earlier as we approach the September equinox; there’s a sense of change in the air. I look forward to seeing you here again for my next blog in September as I continue on my journey through the ever-changing year.

With warm August wishes, Veronica

Towards the mainland from Mull
Across the Sound of Mull towards the Scottish mainland

Stories from the weave studio: July

High summer


Like shooting stars, the grasses at the side of the path catch my attention. Their seed heads are full and heavy. July has been hot and very dry here in Zuid Holland. Time slips by in a heady rush of end of term activities, a summer holiday feel and plans for travel further afield. We wait with bated breath to see if everything can go ahead. The studio has been tidied and the loom waits quietly; it is dressed with a linen warp, poised to be woven after the holidays.

The story of a scarf: a commission

I was recently commissioned to weave a scarf for a friend of a friend. It’s always a privilege to be asked to do this, and I love the challenges a new brief brings. I find it really helps to know a little about the person I’m weaving for, as this informs the materials and colours I use. Once these basics have been decided, I can then select the yarns – this time I’m using a linen warp composed of mixed weights, with a weft made up of soft merino lambswool and beautiful shantung silk from Bart and Francis which comes in luscious mixed shades.

The warp is made up on the warping frame to 48cm plus selvedge, and once it’s on the loom I can begin to weave a sample, trying out different colours and designs. This is the most playful part, where ideas can be explored – sometime they work, sometimes they don’t. The woven sample is cut from the loom, and washed, just as the finished scarf will be. There is shrinkage of around 15% across the width, less along the length, but all this must be accounted for when weaving the final piece.

Once I know the client is happy with the sample – they can pick out the parts they like and dislike – I’m ready to weave the final piece. This particular commission used a painting as its inspiration, so I had a good idea of the colours to use and their proportions. I combined merging patterns with varying colours drifting into each other using ombre effects to complete the finished article.

Memory: a study in weave

The landscape holds imprints and traces that we leave and that are left by the passage of time: contours, striations, layers of time and historical artefacts. In this recent series of work, I’ve used actual maps, sought out and collected from antique shops.

Whilst weaving with the maps, fragments of names and geographical features jump out at me: Old Quarry, Springs, The Arks, Ringle Mill Cave, Horton Scar, Little Wood, Coronation Point, Pile of Stones… How did they come to be there? Who named them and when?

“… I … imagined the depths of history the soil held – Neolithic, Iron Age, Bronze Age, Roman, Augustan, down through all of which the beech roots quested….” – Robert Macfarlane, “The Old Ways”

The woven wall hangings have a quiet presence, but on closer inspection are full of detail that holds the attention. The history of the actual maps also becomes important: discolourations and markings give the paper character. I’ve used a limited number of weave structures which give different effects depending on the materials used. Honeycomb weave emulates the undulations of a hilly landscape, twill echoes the rhythm of ploughed fields or regularly planted crops.

From sheep’s fleece to woven fabric

It was a pleasure recently to be able to see the flock of locally grazed Drentse Heide sheep of Grazend Populair being shorn. The process was done with care and attention, and the sheep seemed relieved to be rid of their bulky fleeces. The wool from these sheep is spun into yarn which I’ve used combined with fine merino and Shetland type wools to make a limited edition series of cushions. Some are available now online in my webshop LiminalWEAVE; others are available at by_ten_creations styling.

Midwinter: mixed media artwork

This recently finished work on canvas harks back to the cold days of winter in the woods. Blues, golds and browns contrast with acid yellow embroidered highlights, a technique that I use a lot in my work on paper and canvas. It’s time consuming, but it gives the contrast and sharp outlines that I otherwise find difficult to achieve using other markmaking techniques. This piece of work has gone through many changes, with large sections of it being painted over before I could achieve the feeling I wanted. That’s often the way with a larger work. More of my artwork can be seen at

Thank you for joining me again at this balancing point in the year, where the fresh new growth of spring and lush decadence of high summer begins to shift towards autumn’s arrival. I hope to see you here again for my next blog in September as I continue on my journey through the year.

With warm July wishes, Veronica

Goose grass

Stories from the weave studio: June

In balance

Summer grasses and windmill

The summer solstice has just passed, and the days will begin to grow shorter once more. The grasses stand tall by the canal, and life is buzzing all around. Time feels slow now, lazy summer days, and when I’m at my studio, there’s a real sense of calm and reflection. A balance between light and shade, day and night, warp and weft, creating and considering.

A sense of order

I’ve been thinking about what it is that constantly draws me back to the loom, to weaving, and what it is that sets me on that creative journey and drives me to realise an idea, one of many that constantly occur to me when I’m weaving. Perhaps it’s the satisfaction of creating order out of chaos – choosing the yarns for the warp, which is usually a fairly intuitive process, winding them onto the warping frame in a repetitive, rhythmic movement, and transferring them onto the loom into a tidy, regimented row of threads, ready to be pulled through the heddles and bound into fabric. Recurring processes, a measured way of working, each step logically following the one that has gone before. A recipe for creating a new material. A procedure that leads to something tangible although not always as expected. Serendipity in the sequence of threads or the properties of the materials. A pattern revealed. Experimentation… what if?

The imprints and traces we leave behind: work on the loom

Contours, striations, layers of time and history, the imprints and traces we leave and that are left by the passage of time. The old ways, the paths once trodden, the footprints, the memories that persist. These are some of the ideas I’m contemplating in a new collection of work, while currently re-reading “The old ways” and “Ness”, both by Robert Macfarlane – books on landscape, nature, place, people, and how these are all interlinked.

My work explores memory through abstract woven form. Our memories shape us, constantly lingering in our subconscious. Past events, people and emotions are recalled by a snippet of text, a place name, a landscape, a landmark, the familiar dip in the path, the bend of a road, transporting us back in time, locally, globally and personally. I combine repurposed material with inherent memory, such as vintage maps, newspapers and music tapes, in woven structure and form. Connecting with the materials through the process, I imbue the waste material with value, integrity, depth and character; hidden moments in time are revealed.

As I weave using vintage maps – in this case an Ordnance Survey map of the Three Peaks (Whernside, Ingleborough and Pen-y-ghent) from 1973 – I think of the people who have used this map, and the places it documents. The names and markers flicker between my fingers: New Pasture, Old Quarry, Long Hill, Stags Fell, Plover Hill, Thieves Moss…. names and their connotations.

New collection of cushions

The limited edition collection of cushions I’ve been working on using locally grown wool by Grazend Populair is complete. The local Drentse Heide sheep’s wool combines beautifully with fine merino and Shetland type wools in the warp to make striking motifs and contrasting patterns. Some are online in my webshop LiminalWEAVE; others are available at by_ten_creations styling. The cushions also have my new labels sewn into the seam. A signature to my work.

Mixed media artwork

Work on paper and canvas is an intrinsic part of my creative process. The experimentation on paper informs my woven work, and vice versa. During May, many of my works were displayed at the Kunstuitleen Voorburg. It’s been interesting to revisit older paintings and to see how my work has progressed. These, together with a selection of handwoven cushions, are available there (to buy or rent via the website) if you’re local to The Hague. More of my artwork can be seen at

Thank you

Thank you for joining me again at this point of high summer as I continue on my journey through the year. I hope to see you here again for my next blog in July.

With warm June wishes, Veronica

Woven newspaper in honeycomb weave

Stories from the weave studio: May

New growth

Spring trees in Haagse Bos

In the space of a couple of weeks, spring has arrived. The woods have changed from bare and wintery to vibrant verdant green – vivid and lush. After the coldest April in The Netherlands for 35 years, May has continued on this chilly theme, but it has taken just a few warmer days for nature to spring into life, the fresh new leaves appearing seemingly overnight. Wood anemones have flowered and gone, and now the bluebells and wild garlic are enjoying their moment in the spotlight before the canopy above becomes too dense and the light levels drop.

This month has seen the culmination of a number of projects, and now it’s time for me to reassess and plan for the future. I’m beginning to think about new work again. An inbetween time.

Featured artist

It’s been a privilege during May to be featured as artist of the month at the Kunstuitleen Voorburg. The team at the gallery has composed a wonderful display of many of my works, both very new handwoven wall hangings and new and old mixed media studies on canvas. These, together with a selection of handwoven cushions, are available there throughout May, and beyond (to rent via the website). The gallery’s website also includes a recent interview I made with Melanie Struik where we chat about how I came to be a weaver, my inspiration and process.

Just off the loom

Using a neutral base of Shetland type wool in ecru, grey, charcoal and the softest sage green combined with locally grown wool by Grazend Populair, I’ve been weaving fabrics for a limited edition range of cushions. Some will be online in my webshop LiminalWEAVE shortly. The combination of the thicker, coarser Drentse Heide sheep’s wool, combined with finer merino and Shetland type wools in the warp enable me to create striking motifs and contrasting patterns in the design.

New samples

I usually reserve the last section of a warp for experimenting. The warp used for the cushions above forms a lovely neutral base to play with other earth and stone colours. The results are muted; the beauty in the detail.


Continuing with my interior styling collaboration, supplying unique wall hangings and limited edition cushions to by_ten_creations, the very talented team there have worked their magic to produce these beautiful images. Ceramics are by Tess Keramiek and wall hangings are in paper and repurposed tape.

Reducing waste

As well as using more locally produced yarns, I also aim to reduce waste as much as I can. One way to use up woven samples is to make covered buttons, which have proven to be popular with knitters and crafters. They are so satisfying to make and become mini explorations into colour. These are available in my shop now.

The cusp of summer

On a tranquil evening last week, at dusk, the sky faded to delicate pastels, and the cow parsley frothed over onto the path. The scent of hawthorn hung heavy on the air; summer was almost tangible. A promise of what lies ahead.

Thank you for joining me on my journey through the year. I hope to see you here again for my next blog in June.

With warm May wishes, Veronica

Evening light and cow parsley

Stories from the weave studio: April

Remembered colour

Handwoven scarf detail

Remembered colour

In my work I evoke memories: either literally by distilling and solidifying the memory of a time and place through the use of colours and abstract woven form and pattern, or conceptually by using materials that have memories inherent in them, such as newspaper and vintage maps.

In January of this year I went for an afternoon walk with my family around a lake at Vlietland, close to my home in The Hague. The day was bitterly cold and the wind was biting. At first the landscape seemed monotone, but after a while I began to notice how colour-full everything was. A kaleidoscope of colours unfurled. Jewel-like mossy greens and ochres on the bark of trees, and the red of the dogwood stems leaping out, catching like fire in the weak wintery light. All was tempered by warm greys, ecru and steely blues, the water reflecting the sky. The resulting series of handwoven lambswool scarves captures the colours of that moment. Colours that are first worked through on paper and canvas using mixed media techniques, and then intuitively translated into fibre on the loom.

The scarves are now in my online shop, LiminalWEAVE. Liminal means relating to a transitional stage or occupying a position at a boundary or threshold. That’s where I see my woven work – standing on the boundary between art and craft. The mixed media studies on canvas will be exhibited in May at Kunstuitleen Voorburg, where they will be available to borrow or buy, as well as some of my woven paper work, also made earlier this year.

New cushion designs

This month, I’ve been continuing with designs for cushions as part of a collaboration with by_ten_creations interior styling. Using locally grown wool produced by Grazend Populair, this sample cushion using wool from the natural lighter coloured spun fleece has come to fruition. Backed with linen, this completely unique design combines large and small motifs in the weave (right hand image). Using the darker fleece colour (middle image), a more contrasting graphical effect is achieved.

Venturing north: exploring Drenthe

Last week I had a short break in Drenthe, a province in the north of The Netherlands renowned for its nature and wildlife. The heathland there is home to many animals and birds, and it was wonderful to see a flock of Drenthe Heath Sheep being driven off the heath to their homestead by their shepherdess. The colours of the fleeces were so varied in colour and texture – some lighter, some very dark, rich umber; some straighter, some curlier. Of course when the opportunity arose, I had to buy some skeins of handspun wool which will find their way into my work when the time is right, reminding me of that time.

The huge expanse of sky and the wide open spaces were a perfect antidote to the claustrophobia of lockdown in the city. It was the first time I’ve travelled anywhere further than an hour’s drive away since August, and it reminded me of the mind-expanding joy a change of scenery can bring.

The Drenthe landscape harbours many wooded areas where partial flooding leads to a strange mixture of arid grassland and marshy waterlogged flatlands. Traversed by Vlonderpadden (board walks), it brought to my mind the African savannah (even though I’ve never been), and I half expected to see antelope hiding in the grasses.

The sea from here

Last year during lockdown, the artist David Cass initiated an open call via Instagram for photographs from people living by the sea to send in their photographs of the sea near them. The intention was to raise awareness of the plight that our seas are currently in. It was a real privilege to see my contribution included: a photo taken of the racing clouds and churning waves on the beach at Scheveningen in June. It was an incredibly windy day, and the kite surfers were out in full force. Now online, ‘The Sea from Here’ is a stunning online exhibition with contributions from as far afield as Greenland and Tasmania; you can see the exhibition here.

Changing seasons

The colours and atmosphere of that freezing January walk in Vlietland now feel like a distant memory in the first flush of Spring here in The Netherlands, where everything is bursting with life. Fresh greens and yellows, whites and softest pinks are now nature’s palette. Somehow these seem to be reflected in the colours I’m sampling now for the cushion fabric – the rich brown of the natural sheep’s fleece is the colour of the fields ploughed and ready for crops to be planted that I saw while in Drenthe just last week, and other samples incorporate soft greens and off white, the colour of the frothy hawthorn blossom appearing in the hedgerows.

Thank you for joining me on my journey through the year. I hope to see you here again for my next blog in May.

With warm April wishes, Veronica

Handwoven repurposed material
Handwoven tape and mixed fibres on the loom: woven wallhanging

Stories from the weave studio: March

Making connections

Weaving is all about connections: a connection to the past through the loom, the oldest technology known to man, a connection to the material and the way it asks to be used, a connection to my inner self as I determine how to progress with the piece I am weaving, and a connection to the fabric itself as it grows on my loom, every inch of yarn passing through my fingers before it becomes interconnected to make the fabric.

Having a creative practice and being a maker can be a solitary profession, and having the opportunity to connect with others is a great chance to find support, inspiration and forge new connections. Thinking about my work following the prompt ‘connections’ as part of the Seam Collective Instagram challenge #SeptTextileChallenge last September led me to think about my work and process and what it means to me on many levels. It was a real privilege to be mentioned in Seam Collective’s blog connections earlier this year.

Off the loom

Using vintage newspaper, maps and other repurposed materials, I’m really happy with how these unique pieces of wall art have turned out. Making memories tangible, I’ve chosen materials that have inherent memory. The newspaper is dated 13 July 2003. Seeing that date on the newspaper immediately pulled me right back to where I was in that year, and all that has happened since. Where does it take you?

Inspiration: remembered landscapes

Following winter walks in Vlietland, wetlands near my home in The Hague, my work has moved on to an exploration of the colours and atmosphere there. The subdued yet rich palette and the piercingly cold wind. The cries of the birds and the rustle of the reeds. The big skies. Starting with works on paper, investigations into these observations inform my woven work. It’s an opportunity to experiment with colour and form without having to commit to the loom and the constraints it imposes.

Process: from inspiration to woven textile

Following observation comes a distilling of the ideas, colours, atmosphere. Working in mixed media and collage, initially on paper in a very rapid and free way, I use acrylic paint, inks, wax resist, mono print and mark making techniques. The works on paper become pieces in their own right, and I am currently developing these into larger work on canvases, embellishing with embroidery threads whose colours sing out and give the sharp definition I’m looking for. I work simultaneously on the loom with similar colours, and the link between the two is clear. One leads to the other, and I quite often switch rapidly between weaving and working on paper, and back again. More of my work can be seen at, and I have a number of pieces in the collection of Kunstuitleen Voorburg.

Collaboration with By Ten Creations

In the coming months, I’m looking forward to collaborating with Tessa and Netty of by_ten_creations interior styling. They seek out unique and special handmade products and art, and offer advice on interior decor. They’ll have a number of my handwoven wall art pieces and wallhangings for sale in their online store (coming soon), and I’m also currently collaborating with them on woven designs for cushion fabrics using the locally grown wool produced by Grazend Populair. The flock of Drenthe Heath Sheep is grazed by shepherdess Judith Prins in Meijendel, Wassenaar and sometimes Solleveld in Monster. Truly locally grown. Their fleece is spun into beautiful robust yarn retaining its natural colours of cream, softest marl grey and a rich chocolatey brown; it’s a real pleasure to work with.

Spring equinox

March 20th marks the spring equinox in the Northern hemisphere. Day and night are equal and nature is moving into a period of intense activity. Trees are breaking into bud and bulbs are pushing through into the sunlight. It’s a time of optimism, of fresh beginnings. New projects, new work, new connections and collaborations, and so much to look forward to.

Thank you for joining me on my journey through the year. I hope to see you here again for my next blog in April.

With warm March wishes, Veronica

Handwoven wall hanging and mixed media on board