Friday, March 27, 2015

Break a Leg!

This wildly variegated silk is one of the eight or so skeins I bought from the Yarn Barn mill ends club several months ago.  After being so excited about ordering the cones, I realized that I have no idea what to do with them, with any of them.  I decided to take a break from towels and experiment. To go with the silk I chose this purple 8/2 Tencel as weft.

I used the formula from Peggy Osterkamp's book to calculate yards per pound, and at 1850 yards per pound, calculated that the maximum twill would be 22 ends per inch, so I set the scarf at 18 epi.  It's a 2 1/2 yard warp, 6" wide.
I just not pleased with the results.  For one thing, I realize that I prefer a wider scarf.  I have a whole cone of this stuff, so wound another warp, this time 3 yards long and 8" wide.
I decided to go with a neutral weft and realized that I was losing the colorful warp so tried black. And it was time to unweave.  Black it is.
Everyone has a way they like to leave room for fringe and get a nice firm and even line for hemstitching.  I just watched Tom Knisely's DVD again and he has his way.  This is mine.
And once the hem stitching is done, I pull out the blind slats and the area for fringe is preserved.  Now I'm cooking with gas.

The information that Yarn Barn supplied with their samples said that this yarn is great for weaving, knitting or crocheting, so I knitted up a quick swatch.  It was transformed when I washed it to a lovely drapey fabric so I decided to cast on a sweater and knit the rest of the cone.  Now I'm looking at the other cones I bought from the mill ends club as possible knitting yarns. Maybe my knitting dry spell is ending.
I'm having a hard time with Maddie's attraction to my packing paper.  It's her favorite place in the studio.  She loves to lay in it and she loves to shred it with her claws.  And when I have a weighted thread, I live in dread that she'll tear it off, though so far she just gently bats at it and watches it swing.
By the time I had finished weaving this morning, this is what she had turned my paper into.  It's going to be a matter of me training me to put the paper on top of the loom when I'm not working.
I have my Dorset studio loom warped and ready for the outreach tomorrow.  I bungied it to the dolly upstairs and brought it down that way and have left it lashed to the loom so I can just wheel it out of the car when we get there tomorrow.  The car is loaded and I'll pick up granddaughter Alexia about 10:15 so we'll have time to stop for sub sandwiches on our way.  I hope the outreach is successful in attracting people who are interested in learning to weave - break a leg!

And great news this afternoon.  I got an email from Handwoven magazine informing me that one of my submissions, the mission-style towels, has been accepted as a semi-finalist to their contest.  The next step is to put them in the mail.  Break a leg!!


Michelle said...

The black; YES!

The cat; BAD.

The contest; WOOHOO!!!

karensspinzen said...

That's awesome! Good luck!

Cindie said...

Congrats on being a finalist in the Handwoven contest. It's fun entering things like that.....although most of the time I never get around to in this case.

Variegated yarns are a challenge but I end up loving the way they turn out - scarves are lovely - will be interested to see your finished knitting.

Valerie said...

Congratulations on the HW entry!! Love the purple and the black with that silk warp.

Two possible solutions for your warp packing paper:
1. Use only one yard sections of paper as you roll on. The advantage of this is that it's easier to roll on straight. And you can pick up the one yard pieces before Maddie gets to them as the weaving progresses. Or if she gets to one, it is only 1 yd. of paper, not your whole roll.

2. You can hang a cardboard tube (think of the tubes that gift wrap comes on) from the back of the loom by threading a string thru the tube and tying the ends of the string to the back beam (not the warp beam, the beam that the yarn goes over on the way to the warp beam)....make it long enough that the cardboard tube hangs below the warp beam. Clip the end of the paper to the tube at each end, using alligator or paper clips, then roll the paper onto the roll as the warp advances. That way, the paper doesn't make it to the floor.

I've done both of those things before I switched to sticks.

Good luck!

Unknown said...

I picked up a tip, from somewhere long ago, to tie two long loops around the back beam when using paper or cardboard for spacing. It will collect/reroll the paper as you progress without it hitting the floor.