Interview with Tracy Laub of Paracosm Woven

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I first noticed Paracosm Woven during the Loom to Wrap Spring 2015 Competition.  I reached out to admire her work and this interview followed!  Keep your eyes peeled for an upcoming review as a tester may be heading my way.  Don’t forget to join the Paracosm Chatter page.

Picture of Beach Holiday:

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Are you a babywearer? If so, when did you start and what were your first carriers?

I am! I wear my baby and my toddler almost daily. If I didn’t, I’m not sure how I’d ever get anything done. I started wearing my first born in a Baby K’Tan and a Moby back in June of 2013, when he was about a week old. It wasn’t until he was around six months that I discovered baby wraps. My first official woven wrap carry was rucksack carry. My little guy loved it!

When did you start weaving and what inspired you to start? How did you learn to weave?

I started weaving in February of 2014 after seeing someone post in the DIY Babywearing Advice group that she was weaving her very own custom baby wrap on a floor loom. My jaw dropped…how inspiring! I thought “I must figure out how to do that too!” So I dove right in and got a floor loom to call my own. I lived in a rural area at the time, so there were no local weaving guilds or classes. I learned the basics from the online Craftsy Floor Loom weaving class taught by Janet Dawson. Her class was fabulous and very easy to follow.

What else have you woven aside from wraps?

Scarves, dish towels and baby blankets. I’m always hoping to dress the loom with the goal of making gifts for family and friends, but all that I seem to churn out lately is baby wraps!

What was your first weaving project?

The very first warp I put on my loom was for a scarf, and it was a learning process to say the least. I experienced moderate levels of frustration and confusion paired with a sense of victory each time I was able to troubleshoot a hurdle. By the time I had put on my second warp, things were starting not only to make sense, but I was really starting to enjoy the process.

What kind of loom do you have?

I have two four shaft Leclerc Artisats, but I see an eight shafting looming in my future. See what I did there? Ha!

Do you have a mentor?

While I don’t have an “official” mentor, I consider all the kind folks that share their problems, successes and weaving wisdom in the FB weaving community, whether that be in the 4-Shaft Weaving group or Warped Wrappers. Everything I know about making baby wraps, I learned in these two groups.

Do you have a favorite wrap that you have made?

I do! It’s Little Bitty Pretty One 4.2m with bronze cottolin weft, inspired by my kiddo Bea. The warp is 80% 10/2 merc cotton and 20% 8/2 unmerc cotton woven in three pick herringbone twill. The mix of yarns gives the wrap a lovely soft texture and the colorway is really versatile – it goes from natty to black. It is a dream to wrap with and so soft, absolute permastash!

Picture of Little Bitty Pretty One:

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Do you have a favorite fiber?

I’ve been experimenting with lots of different fibers, but really love the look and feel of Tencel®. It really is like the softness of your favorite shirt combined with lovely drape and beautiful sheen.

What’s your favorite weave structure? What would you like to try? Are you open to complicated weaves?

I’ve been mostly working with basic twills, but plan to branch out soon to try some of the more complicated structures like crackle and turned tacquete. I think for now, I’d have to say that herringbone twill is my favorite; I just love the way it looks.

Tell us about your competition piece.

The Spring 2015 competition theme was “Wonders of the World” and I chose the Aurora Borealis, because (to me) there are few things in nature more beautiful than streaks of color filling the night sky.

My mockup was actually totally different from my final piece. This was the first time I placed each color by eye wherever I felt like it and I was really happy with the results.

(If you hurry, there is one remaining piece remaining of Daughter of the Dawn available on her ETSY shop! Who ever scores this pretty is one lucky family.)

Picture of the Spring 2015 Competition Piece Daughter of the Dawn:

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Picture of the Fall 2014 Competition Piece Young at Heart:

Picture of her Fall 2014 Loom to Wrap Competition Piece: Young at Heart

Do you watch or listen to anything while you weave?

Lots of Pandora radio. Boards of Canada, Pinback, City & Colour, Lana Del Ray and Motown are some of my favorite stations.

Do you have a favorite weaving related task?

The design process is my favorite part, hands down! For me, this consists of finding and organizing photos that I find inspiring, creating color palettes from these images, and then popping those color palettes into a stripe generator to create various mockups before I choose a final design.

THANK YOU SO MUCH Tracy!  I enjoyed all of your responses.  I also used the K’Tan as my first carrier and I’m super impressed that you started with back carries.  I absolutely cannot wait to see what’s coming off your loom in the future.

Now excuse me as I rock out to her Pandora selections.

** ALL Pictures were shared with the weaver’s permission**

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