Today, the first snow. Yesterday our Liisa loom made in Finland was put to bed. (covered with a tarp) Now the flakes are falling and the coloured lights look far more appropriate. Fittingly two Finish fiber artists visited. I have always had a love affair with Scandinavia – colourful weaving, skiing, primary colours, the need for warmth, colourful wool and yet more weaving. Hearing Finish spoken I recognized the lilt and learned that to weave is: “kutoa.”
Warmth is of course a primary concern for northern climate and the first Finish weaving I saw was a very warm pile weave ryijy (pronounced rya) from a weaver named Toma. It looks like sheepskin and is used with pile side down for warmth on a bed, a wall or the floor. Much Finish weaving has traditionally been linen as flax grows readily in a norther climate. Both Finish women still own linen tea towels that get softer and more absorbent with age. One of them remembered a mother an or grandmother weaving in red linen and immediately the red Christmas elves sprang to mind. Here’s to a cozy winter!
Liisa LoomFirst Snow