All posts by Penny Peters

Staving Off Dementia

I have been glued to the computer monitor this week.  In an effort to change work habits, a bit of pot stirring effort to  prod some creativity, I purchased ProWeave .   It is a wonderfully different program from my beloved WeavePoint  and WeaveIt .   Additionally, Dini Cameron is currently leading an online study group to help us newbies learn the intricacies of designing with ProWeave.

How is this staving off dementia?  Well for one thing, with drawing!  We have to draw!  I don’t draw.  When I learned to use Photoshop some years ago I thought I would have to learn to draw, but no, I learned a number of clever ways to cheat, to develop pattern without drawing, you understand, sort of work arounds.  I have not yet discovered how to do that in ProWeave.

This is my first attempt with the some of the drawing tools.  It makes me think dementia has already inched in.


Learning new software is a challenge and it is frustrating.  More important for me though, it is fun.  It’s a new tool and I love tools.  New tools force me to think differently.  They change what I do, how I do it, and the end point.

Wonder if all the hype about keeping your brain active, learning, etc, to avoid mental deterioration has any basis in reality.  Don’t think I will tempt fate.


Working with others is not common in our weaving world, usually a loom only wants one weaver.  Producing a quality textile requires many skills though, the spinning of the yarn, the sewing of the garment, the dyeing of the yarn, you get the picture.  I feel lucky if I can master one part of the process.  I choose to weave.  My friend, Nancy Roberts has chosen to dye.

Nancy lives just down the street but it took a guild meeting 15 miles away before we really connected.  Nancy has done some weaving, knitting, spinning, but her real love is Machine Knitting and Dyeing, thus her web site

We have worked on a number of projects together.  This one took a year in 2009 and a third collaborator, Loretta Warner ( www. ) .

Double Weave Coat


We have since worked on a number of different projects, some good, some not so successful.  The current project is based on a warp I did a number of years ago.  With 4 cones I was able to go from black to a sort of periwinkle in the center.  It took many changes of cones throughout the warping, lots of counting.

Multiple tabby with dbl weave tieup (14-4)

With Nancy’s expert dyeing of a very narrow knitted blank, I was able to wind this warp directly onto the beam, no switching out of cones of yarn, endless counting etc.   It isn’t woven yet but just looking at the warp on the beam makes me happy.