Monday, January 14, 2019

Modern Quilt Studio's Warp & Weft Premium Yarn Dyes

If you're like us, you're always eager to see what Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr come up with next. These Modern Quilt Studio designers are back with a new collection: Warp & Weft Premium Yarn Dyes. These woven prints are richly delicious--their touch, their pattern variety, and, of course, the colors! You'll have a hard time choosing a favorite. Enjoy the eye candy below and keep reading to learn more about this unique collection. 

What attracted you to the idea of a yarn-dye collection?
We’re always looking for the next thing, and we often reimagine things people have written off, or think of them in a new way. Who says that yarn dyes, which are so iconic to American quilting, have to represent just one era of quilting? They’re typically dark and Civil War era. Why can’t they be bright and fun?

Tell us about the design process.
What’s so awesome about yarn dyes is that each thread is dyed and the pattern is woven, rather than everybody starting out with the same white cloth and printing on it. The uniqueness of yarn dyes is also the challenge for the designer. We would send in specific patterns—such as four threads of yellow, two threads of orange—and it becomes more of a collaboration with the weaver. It’s a different experience that requires more flexibility and experience. But we were excited to do it, and excited that Benartex was willing to do it.

Tell us about the name of the collection.
Warp and weft refer to the horizontal and vertical lines in the weaving process. When you are loading up a loom with the threads that are parallel to the selvedge, that’s the warping. The perpedincular threads are the weft. “Premium Yarn Dyes” is because we were very specific about the quality of these fabrics. We gave Benartex antique swatches we’d collected over the years of different weaves, weights and finishes. We wanted the fabric to be a weight that quilters would be happy sewing with.

Was it difficult to achieve the colors you envisioned?
It was a challenge to get the colors just right. The mill would dye the thread and then weave it. You can’t just tweak the color and reprint; you have to dye more thread, wait for it to dry, and then weave it again. We’re much more interested in classic colors than trendy, and we wanted these prints to really look different. Jewel tones are a comfortable palette for us, and since so few yarn dyes are available, we wanted to have a full spectrum of colors, so people had more options for mixing with prints and solids in their stash.

How did you choose the scales and patterns in the collection?
We thought about how people were going to use these and created a variety of scales. We wanted both different scales and different weaving patterns so people could use the fabrics adjacent to each other and not worry about lining things up. Large-scale yarn dyes are very similar to large-scale prints—you want to be careful how you use them, and avoid having a bunch of seams. Smaller scale prints are small enough that the pattern doesn’t show up dramatically and you don’t have to worry about aligning the pattern.

Can you name a few favorites?
The multi stripe aqua is a cool breeze. The big gray and white check can transform any quilt and make it fun, just because of the scale.The chunky blue-green plaid is really fun, and the magenta is killer.  The mini ginghams serve as tone-on-tones. They’re not high maintenance, and they make everything else look great. 

Click here to see the entire Warp & Weft collection.
Visit Weeks and Bill's website
Come back each day this week for more Warp & Weft inspiration! 
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1 comment:

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