That Was Another Week That Was! Blogging Backwards…

Phew!  Another week at HV skola and a packed timetable that looked something like this:
Monday/Tuesday: Guest teacher, Ivar: multi-coloured knitting and steek techniques, Weds/Thurs: Regular Teacher, Karin: Machine Knitting intro,  Friday: Guest Teacher, Charlotte: Design/Form

I am going to blog backwards and try to share what I learned yesterday and go from there!  My head is spinning with information, inspiration and ideas in two languages simultaneously but here goes…

Guest teacher Charlotte introduced our group to identifying and then designing repeating patterns.  In Swedish each block to be repeated is called a “rapport.”

What I really like about this class is that we get out pen, paper, scissors and glue and start from a blank page to an endless world of possibilities.  We live in a digital age and I am sitting here sharing electronically, writing this blog.  However, it does feel wonderful to get back to basics, to create with the hands, without the computer as the starting point.  As our teacher pointed out there are probably many computer programs out there that would make the process quicker and easier but somehow we would be losing out in the creative process by using such shortcuts.  I am thankful for the computer however to document and share these concepts and I hope someone out there in cyberspace might find this useful or interesting.

So how to create a repeating pattern?  First take a blank sheet of paper, black felt tip pens/fineliners of various thickness, take a deep breath and begin…

Step 1:  Cut an A4 sheet down to size to make a square – in this case 20cm x 20 cm

Step 2: Draw a design like a “+” within the page, i.e. focus on top to bottom, left to right but leave some space in the corners. (Picture, far left, shown below.)

Step 3: Cut the design into four equal quarters, cutting along the horizontal and vertical, but swap the four squares at each diagonal.  That is the first formation seen as  A    B        Becomes:         C      D

D     C                                 B      A

Step 4: Join these newly positioned quarters with tape at the back to form a new large square which has space in the middle. (Picture, top right, shown above.)

Step 5:  Fill the space in the middle of the square with further design ideas (picture, bottom right, shown above.)

Step 6: Join the squares together to form a larger piece of work showing the repetitions of the patterns thus:


Note to self: don’t rush the cutting with scissors process!

Ok then.  Got it.

Now, do it all again with a new design!

My second design was in a “brickwork” construction, with a slight shift to the left where the pattern is stuck together.  This created an interesting effect.  I felt inspired by a Swedish design book based on 1950s patterns which included intricate mosaic:

With that as a starting inspiration I came up with this design and “brickwork” process:

I was pleased with the outcome but realised I could draw clearer edges to make a more decisive join at the repetitions:

Repeated sections in

Repeated sections in “brickwork” construction.

I have already made a few adjustments and also coloured in my work to see how this will work out when repeated and put together.  I am waiting for access to a photocopier but the adjusted / colour looks like this so far:

Design colour

So get your paper, pens, scissors, sticky tape and inspiration at the ready!


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