Andean Pebble Weaves for Backstrap Weaving
Andean Pebble Weave, perhaps the most easily recognized of the many pick-up weaving techniques practiced in Peru and Bolivia, is not only beautiful to behold but also a pleasure to weave. Indigenous weavers use geometric, animal, plant and human figures posed on the dotted or “pebbled” background characteristic of this weave to decorate carrying cloths, ponchos, coca leaf bags, belts and sashes. Being partly loom-controlled, it is one of the faster pick-up weaving techniques to execute. Students will first learn, on narrow body-tensioned warps, how to create sheds by hand in order to weave plain pebble weave as well as the basic shapes that are the building blocks of all pebble weave motifs. They will then work on developing the ability to combine these basic shapes in different ways to create more complex patterns using a faster partly loom-controlled method. After studying different systems for charting these shapes, they will practice charting patterns directly from cloth and be given the tools to design their own motifs.