Friday, January 30, 2015

Problem Solved

What to do for my next weaving project was solved for me.  My son, Alan, called last night and asked "how long does it take you to weave a scarf?".  Answer, on the ridid heddle loom it will take 1 day if I start early enough, why?  A friend at work is retiring and he would really like to give her one of my hand woven scarfs.  After playing 20 questions we settled on a drapey tonal green scarf.  No bright colors, no intricut patterns just a nice simple scarf.

Do I have the yarns in my stash for this scarf?  Of course not, so off I go to Clinch River Yarn Co.  To see Sandy and pick out the perfect yarn for this project.  We came up with Berrocco, Folio 65% Superfine Alpaca and 35% Rayon for the warp (12epi dye lot #20) and Madelinetosh hand dyed yarns, Tosh Merino light 100% Superwash Merino Wool, colorway Jade, for the weft.


I think it is looking pretty good.  I do hope it is what Alan is looking for.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Loom is Empty!

What a warp this was!  So many learning opportunities:

   *  Make sure you measure your warp properly
              1.  Planned to do 10 yards, did 20
              2.  Planned on being 16" wide, did 15

    *  Wind on with a good even tension

    *  The last lesson learned?
                You know how you try to help teenagers by giving them advice about things you have learned over your life time.  They don't listen because they know everything already.  Well, this apparently pertains to some of us weavers also.  I have been told, and I have read "do not weave too close to the reed because you will not get a good shed".  Well, quess what, all those people know what they are talking about.  Out of 20 placemats 7 had errors that went all the way across the pick, something I did not see until they were washed and dried.

This was the third tie-on for this warp.  Bad tension can really mess you up.

That 20 yard warp is off of the loom finally.  Now comes the time that I have been dreading.   I HAVE to make a decision as to what will be on the looms next.  Help me, I can't make up my mind and when I do decide I have to wind the warp (my least favorite part of weaving).

Monday, January 26, 2015

Rainy Days and Fridays

Rainy days and Fridays equals finishing 12 placemats.

After spending the morning on my iPad looking at Ravelry, Tuesday Weavers Blog and Facebook, all of which were showing me lots and lots of finished weaving projects, I decided it was time to stop procrastinating and finish my challange placemats.

First comes serging 12 placemats-

Then comes hemming 12 placemats-

Followed by washing, trimming off ends (which I prefer to do after washing and drying), repairing errors that do not show up until after washing, and finally a good pressing.

I am still in a quandry as to what to work on next.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Cricket Club Meeting

The third Sunday of each month the  Clinch River Yarn Co hosts a Cricket Club meeting from 2pm until 4ish.  Today is the third weekend in January.  There was a nice healthy sized group of 13 weavers in attendance.

Before the end of each meeting we try to reach a consensus as to what we should work on during the next meeting.  Last month it was decided that the theme for the today would be the Hounds tooth pattern.  This pattern is enjoyed by many and is a fairly easy pattern to accomplish.

The loom is warped with 2 dark warps followed by 2 light warps continuing across the desired width of your project.  If you are new to rigid heddle weaving what this means is that you pull a loop of dark through the slot in the heddle to your warping peg followed by a light loop in the next slot continuing for your desired width. When you have completed pulling your loops through, wind on the warp, cut the loops and thread one of the yarns in the slot in the adjacent hole, you will have 2 dark ends followed by 2 light ends.
Wind 2 shuttles, one in dark yarn, one in light.  Weave 2 picks of dark yarn followed by 2 picks of light continuing until your project is completed.

A lot of good work was done today, however, I was only able to get a couple of pictures before everyone left the shop.
We also did a lot of visiting, sharing, comparing and a little eating.

My addition to the party
is made with Atomic City Fibers handdyed Superwash Merino fingering weight in Reyleigh's  Violet Skies and Sandnes Garn, Alpakka fingering weight white.  I am warping 6" in a 12 dent heddle.  The length of my warp is 94" (72" scarf,  2-6" fringes and 10" of loom waist)

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Placemat challenge

The 12 placemats are woven and have been removed from the loom!  There is still quite a bit of warp left.  Apparently my 2+ years of weaving do not ensure that I can correctly measure a 10 yard warp, so I retied and will continue on with additional matching mats.

After weaving 12 mats and taking them off the loom you would think that I would have an excited feeling of accomplishment.  Now I just sit and look at the yardage and think "now I have to surge, hem, wash and press 12 placemats".  To you knitters out there, equate this to having to weave in all those loose ends, wash and block your "finished" sweater.
The yardage is still intact here, so each fan is two placemats.

I am still in a quandry as to what to work on next.  

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Looking good

I am very pleased to say that the placemat warp for the Tuesday Weavers challenge is behaving quite nicely.  I have completed 6 of the 12 placemats today.
Good day

I am also pleased with my draw-in or lack there of.  There is no hour glass shape to the warp threads! Now that is not to say there is NO draw-in just not overly so.

My problem now is, what do I put on Stanley?  I have so many things I want to do.

     Doubleweave baby blanket for double width

     Something to wear, maybe from the Weave Knit and Wear book.


     Of course there is always more dishtowels

     And of course I must plan ahead for the fall shows

Maybe I should write them down on pieces of paper and draw one out of a hat.  That would surely take the decision making out of it.  Draw a project and "just do it".

Saturday, January 3, 2015

2015 Resolution

So, my resolution for 2015 is "To start recording my weaving projects."
I have never been really good at this, therefore if I show another weaver the result of my planning and work I cannot answer questions such as what yarn is this and what sett did you use?
I wish to change my ways starting today.

The end of 2014 brought a challange from the Tuesday Weavers.  By October 2015 we are to produce 12 matching placemats to be but in the Appalachian Art and Crafts Center for sale.  I accepted the challange and brought home several partial cones of 8/4 carpet warp left over from previous projects produced at the center.  I wound a warp 10 yards in length using 10 complimentary colors.  Unfortunately, I did not do a good job of keeping the yarns in proper order producing 10 yards of twisted warp.  Not wanting to waste that much carpet warp,  I continued and wound on to my Baby Wolf thinking I would deal with twist as I go.  I threaded the heddles, 8 shafts using an elongated chevron twill draft found in the "I-weave it" drafting program and sleyed an 8 dent reed at 16 epi.

Okay, the placemat is going to end up too narrow!  The plan now is to add two more repeats of the colors, this will give me an adequit width for a placemat.  Next, thread and sley the addition ends, use weights to give tension to the extra threads.  Start sampling wefts but the tension is horrid!  How can I fix this?

WIND TO THE FRONT AND THEN REWIND TO THE BACK BEAM!  Easy peasey right.  Well, three days and lots and lots of combing and untwisting the warp, I did it.
  The tension was SO bad when winding on that I had long threads on both sides and short threads in the middle but I did get the extra ends wound onto the front beam.

All of the above happened during the last week of 2014.

This morning I trimmed the ends and tied knots for lashing onto the back beam, so far so good.
  I then wound onto the back beam, looking good.  I retied the warp to the front rod and began weaving again.  OH, MY GOODNESS IT WORKED.  The tension is good and so is the width (so far).

Hopefully pictures will follow, if I can figure out how.  Well it looks like I got that too.