A Weaver of Wearable Art

W. John Jameson III was first attracted to textiles at summer camp in his pre-teens when macramé was big. Remember macramé? Commissions for plant holders earned extra candy and ice cream. Jameson had been drawn to the arts from early childhood. Choate Rosemary Hall (boarding school) in Wallingford, Connecticut, believed in complete exposure. In a Paul Mellon funded I.M. Pei building, he studied drawing, painting, sculpture, and ceramics. When his weaving teacher, Jane Gustin, showed him “the beauty in textiles,” the boy felt an immediate affinity. He liked the idea of wearable art.

“Seeing the possibilities in yarn is a fun design challenge. What can I mix with this? How is it going to finish? Who will wear the piece and how?”

Jameson came from a family of doctors. Though his parents encouraged creativity, they were also extremely pragmatic. He made a deal with his mother: if he secured a B.S. (in Mass Communications at Boston University), then he could go on to F.I.T. and earn a fashion degree. A special one year accelerated graduate program in Fashion and Textiles followed.

From receptionist at a fashion company, he was offered a job as design assistant at Stillwater, a mill weaving uniform fabrics. In 4 years, Jameson advanced to Creative Director. His heart was not in it. 1999 found him establishing Twisted Textiles, based in Carnegie Hill, New York City. The closet entrepreneur blossomed.

Jameson started with yarns from all over the world, with a preference for Italy. He’s recently discovered Be Sweet, from South Africa and Knit Collage out of India. “My new favorite type of yarn is artspun handspun. Knowing that one person was involved from the sheep to finished skein is great. There’s a spirit to the product I love to pass on into my scarf.”

Influences such as Randall Darwell, Sheila Hicks, Lenore Tawney and Jack Lenor Larsen, have been distilled to create Jameson’s own, original take on wearable art. With unexpected sparkle (metallics,) decorative ribbon and felt ornamentation, scarves from Twisted Textiles achieve an originality rarely found.

In addition to his scarves, Jameson has produced commissioned wall hangings shown at Gallery VIII in Manchester, Vermont. His iconoclastic artisanship has been seen at the prestigious Philadelphia Museum of Arts Craft Show as well as the American Craft Council Shows in Atlanta, Baltimore, Charlotte, Chicago, St. Paul, and San Francisco.

The one of a kind scarves shown can be found at Lucy Fine Gifts and range from $175.00 to $300.00.

Photos above in order shown:
Left: Oil Blue with 3 Cotton Stripes Scarf Handwoven, extrafine merino, alpaca, cotton stripe, and silk with custom designed satin ribbon; 9.5″ by 70″
Right: Blue Potluck Scarf Handwoven, extrafine merino and a variety of fibers and textures including sequins; hand painted silk ribbons, also comes in red (no picture available
Left: Orange and White Flirt Scarf Handwoven, extrafine merino, cashmere, rayon, and cotton with hand painted silk ribbons, 9.5″  by 69″
Right: Felted Flowers Scarf Handwoven, extrafine merino (handspun) and rayon/cotton with skinny hand painted silk ribbons. 9.5″ wide by 69″
Photo credit for above: Togg!e Photography

Detail of Festival Scarf (limited edition, available in other colors):
Handwoven in extrafine merino and cashmere with cut colored ribbons, the fringe is hand painted silk satin ribbon. 10.5″ wide by 71″
Photo credit for Festival Scarf: Kronus Photo.

For further information about Twisted Textiles visit  www.twistedtex.com.

About Alix Cohen (726 Articles)
Alix Cohen is the recipient of eight New York Press Club Awards for work published on this venue. Her writing history began with poetry, segued into lyrics and took a commercial detour while holding executive positions in product development, merchandising, and design. A cultural sponge, she now turns her diverse personal and professional background to authoring pieces about culture/the arts with particular interest in artists/performers and entrepreneurs. Theater, music, art/design are lifelong areas of study and passion. She is a voting member of Drama Desk and Drama League. Alix’s professional experience in women’s fashion fuels writing in that area. Besides Woman Around Town, the journalist writes for Cabaret Scenes, Broadway World, and Theater Pizzazz. Additional pieces have been published by The New York Post, The National Observer’s Playground Magazine, Pasadena Magazine, Times Square Chronicles, and ifashionnetwork. She lives in Manhattan. Of course.