Sunday, March 27, 2011

Reasa's Scarf

I have fallen terribly behind on keeping track of my projects, so it's time to catch up!

This scarf was woven for my cousin Reasa. The warp is painted by Carrie May in her Autumn Harvest colorway. It is 8/2 Tencel sett at 24 epi. The weft is brown wool crepe from Habu.

The draft for this scarf was inspired by and is very similar to Jill's scarf. It is a straight threading on 12 shafts, with a plaited tie up and an advancing twill treadling. When I wove Jill's scarf (and its sample), I noticed that it had a tendency to collapse slightly. I thought that maybe I could use the same thing successfully with an overtwisted weft, and it worked! I love the way the plaited tie-up created subtle curves, rather than the straight linear pleats seen in an eight shaft 3/1/1/3 collapse piece. Bonnie Inouye's Advance! workshop really gave me the tools to design this.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Robyn Spady Fab Four Workshop

Last weekend, our guild was fortunate to have Robyn Spady present her Fab Four workshop. This was a round robin workshop of four shaft structures. It was a great workshop. Robyn was so thoughtful, organized, and generous. Everyone in our group, from beginner through advanced, got something out of the workshop. I came home wanting to try all kinds of things, especially diversified plain weave, cannele, swivel, and overshot-patterned double weave. Below are a few of the samples I wove.


Cannele (with different cell sizes):
Overshot patterned double weave (top) and turned swivel (middle, light weft, and bottom, dark weft)


Diversified plain weave:Some ideas I'm thinking of... Diversified plainweave towels, table runner; cannele place mats; swivel, framed like needlepoint for my walls; a messenger bag with corduroy on the front... I wonder if I ought to quit my day job...

Robyn was also kind enough to go through her presentation on making jewelry from thrums. She had a lot of great ideas, and I was glad to order a copy of her new monograph on that topic. I'm thinking maybe I could invite some of my non-weaver friends to a jewelry-making party to use up some thrums!

Scarf inspired by Advance! workshop

Last year our guild hosted a workshop with Bonnie Inouye, and the topic was "Advance!". The workshop left me with so many ideas. For this project, I took an advancing points threading and wove it as overshot, to try my hand at weaving curves. The the warp and ground weft were a rayon / flax blend, and the pattern weft was a hand-painted bamboo / silk blend. I liked the idea of a shimmery pattern over a matte background. This was a lot of fun to weave; I enjoyed choosing the directions of the curves as I went. On the loom, the scarf looked very cool. After I finished it and looked at it from a distance, I wasn't as impressed. I can see that I definitely need more practice weaving the curves to make them appear smoother. In some places, they look a little abrupt to me. But I'm happy I tried it and intend to practice some more. And I will enjoy wearing my new scarf! :-)

This sideways photo shows the front of the scarf:

And this one shows the front and the back:

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Scarf for Jill

It has been more than a year since I bought a 4 shaft extension kit for my Louet Spring. Life happened, and I just recently installed it, giving me 12 shafts in all. My plan is to work through "Exploring Multishaft Design", but first, I wanted to make something. I decided on a straight threading. I used a plaited tie up from Bonnie Inouye's "Advance!" workshop handout. I played with several treadlings and chose advancing points. I first tried to weave a scarf with slubby rayon, but the texture of the yarn hid the pattern. I cut off that warp and used Bambu 12 instead. I sleyed it at 30 epi. I used the color cilantro for the warp and coral for the weft. I am trying to weave scarves for all of the girls in my family, and those colors made me think of my cousin Jill.

I was a little anxious about whether I could comfortably use 14 treadles, but that was no problem at all. The loom squeaked some when I treadled, so I used a little silicone spray on the rollers. That did the trick.

I actually remembered to measure the scarf before I gave it away. It was 5 5/8" x 70 1/2" on the loom and 5 3/8" x 67 1/2" after finishing. I added some of the coral yarn to the cilantro fringe. The cilantro by itself just stood out way too much.

I had a hard time getting any good pictures of it because they yarn reflected the light so much. Here is a shot showing both sides:
And here is a picture showing the front in more detail:
I was pleased with the way it turned out, and, more importantly, so was Jill!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Organic Cotton Towels - M's and O's

I've fallen behind on my record keeping, so now it's time to catch up! A couple of months ago, I wove a set of kitchen towels in M's and O's, using a 10/2 organic cotton sampler from Chamomile Connection. I needed to make some gift towels, so I wove a set of four. Two were for me to give as (another!) wedding gift. Another was for my grandma to give to her cleaning lady. Grandma is quite fond of her, and she has admired a couple of towels that I have made for Grandma. The last, I kept for myself.
I was inspired to weave these some scarves in a recent issue of Handwoven. They were M's and O's with different stripes in the warp. I thought that would be a good way to use the little bits of different colors that were in the sampler.

Here is a shot of the towels on the loom. The colors are really subtle.

And here are a couple of the towels after washing in hot water, detergent, and washing soda. The colors are much more vibrant. I used a different color of weft on each towel.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Linen Huck Lace Runner

I recently wove a gift for another wedding. This bride is very feminine and traditional. She and her new husband love antiques and have a home that he restored. So, I naturally chose a lace weave for them. I used Bockens 16/2 linen sett at 18 epi. I chose to weave it on my Baby Wolf. I have two reeds that will fit that loom: 8 dpi and 12 dpi. With the 8 dpi, I could sley 2/2/2/3 for 18 epi, and with the 12 dpi, I could sley 1/2 for 18 epi. Thinking it looked more even overall, I chose the 8 dpi reed. In retrospect, I see that this was the wrong choice. I could see reed marks after finishing the runner. I'm sure they weren't noticeable to the bride and groom, but I could see them. I see now that sleying 1/2 would have allowed the warp ends to move more evenly during finishing than the 2/2/2/3 allowed the one odd end en every fourth dent to move. The draft is from page 12 of The best of Weaver's Huck Lace.

I wove a sample as well, and used part of it to make a card to go with the gift:

This was my first experience in weaving with linen. After hearing horror stories about it, I was a little apprehensive, but the apprehension was unnecessary. It behaved very well. I didn't spray the warp with water or soak the bobbins. The weft did have a tendency to jump off the bobbin when it was full. I think either soaking the bobbin or using an EFS would have taken care of that. I should also note that we had a humidifier running in the next room, as we normally do in the winter.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Canvas weave wedding gift

A friend of mine got married a couple of weeks ago. Her engagement was very short, and she didn't give us much notice before the wedding. I'm glad the reception was a week after the wedding, so I had a chance to finish the towels I was making her. There wasn't much time to spend designing the towels as I would have liked, so I just chose a draft from Davison that I had used for towels before. I had woven it before and liked it. It had an interesting pattern and used just one shuttle, so I went with it. It was a canvas weave, Swarthmore Check, on page 69. I used 8/2 unmercerized cotton in green and beige. The label says "KARDED COT 8/2POE". The yarn was pretty friendly to use. The only thing I noticed about it was in the semi-plainweave hems, there was a ton of tracking. That might be fun to play with another time. The towels shrunk noticeably after I washed them, but, of course, I forgot to measure them before I gave them away. I took a piece from the sample and made a card similar to the ones here, but with a heart-shaped opening. I forgot to take a picture of the card, too! I did manage to snap a couple of pics of the towels, so I will leave you with them.