Unraveling Material

During one of the first afternoons I was with my weaving teacher, Ann Dizikes, I payed close attention to the way her hands were motioning incredibly fine fibers across her warp.

We took a pause together, thinking about what project would be best for me to learn from next. Ann had a thought, and stepped out for a moment, returning with a rag rug that she had made many years ago. I was struck by the beauty that the repetition of the fibers creates, with its slight variations in color bringing subtle shifts to the harmonious pattern.

Ann originally made this rag rug over twenty years ago, weaving it together using a cotton warp, and a weft made of old cotton curtains that used to hang in her mother's kitchen window in England, as well as an old pair of jeans. I was inspired seeing this small rug, as I had just moved into a new space and was in need of a mat for outside of my shower. I was astounded when Ann took a pair of scissors and began cutting across the warp, beginning to unravel the materials. She explained that the warp had begun to come undone, and without clinging to it, or grieving over this change, she began gently cutting and winding a small ball of material as she liberated the weft from the cotton warp. She then instructed me to continue the work of winding a ball with the remnants to make use of the material in a new rag rug.


I learned how to weave a small rug together by taking this one apart.