Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tying on a new warp

My next warp on this threading (Double 2 & Stitched Double Weave) is Bendigo 2 ply wool. Having only tied on a new warp to the old once before (not a success) I did a bit of research, studied my class notes from when we had a demo and looked at this blog here;

I tried this way but could not mange to have the warp in my left hand with the cross neatly separated by my fingers  AND select the correct ends AND tie knots at the same time. I got cramps, dropped things and generally got into a right royal mess. But I persisted and as I struggled along  what Adam Smith wrote " Men are much more likely to discover easier and readier methods of attaining any object, when the whole attention of their minds is directed towards that single object, than when it is dissipated among a great variety of things" started to become true.

I gave up trying to hold the new warp but put it into open ended lease sticks made by taking the cross maker from my AVL warping wheel and attaching it to the beater arm. Picking out the next new warp thread became easy. I overcame the problem of disentangling the old warp ends as they emerged from the reed by combing them out and holding them in place with a mini reed from a tension box.

I wound little warp chains of  24 ends at a time; I wasn't that speedy but the whole operation became completely stress free.


Stitched Double Weave

Once I got started I found it difficult to stop as I wanted to see what each new motif would look like. The end result  is that what was intended as a sampler has become a wall hanging. A bit ropey in certain places and a bit OTT but my story is that it meant to be looked at from afar!

The photo is equally ropey and doesn't do full justice to the splendour of this piece of fabric art.

If I were to use this for something like a shawl I think that the more subtle patterns would look best - diamonds or little hollow motifs. I am planning to tie on another warp so I will try something a little more subtle.

We studied Double Two in our weaving class last week and it is serendipitous that this threading that I put on for stitched Double Weave is also a Double Two threading


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Stitched Double Weave

At long last I have started work on my Stitched Double Weave sampler. The draft is Strickler #691 with the treadles moved around a bit I could understand it better. The draft below is as it was just before I converted it to lift-plan. It shows the "theoretical" tie up as opposed to the practical.

Treadles 1 and 3 weave brown in the top layer on shafts 7 & 8. Treadles 2 and 4 weave ecru in the bottom layer on shafts 1 to 6 (7 & 8 are also lifted every time to lift the top layer out of the way when weaving the bottom layer). The stitched design is produced by lifting any combination of treadles 6 to 11 when weaving the top layer. This pulls individual stitches of the bottom layer into the top layer to form the pattern; in the example below, a heart and a box shape.  The practical tie up is as shown below. I got the idea of deconstructing a tie up into its theoretical components from Weaver's Issue 2 Summer 1988 and some of my class notes.
I have put on a warp of bright cotton in blue and yellow so that I can see exactly what is happening. Rather than having a print out of the lift plan I have positioned my net book computer next to the loom so that I can use a magnified view of the treadling and the cursor keys to check where I am.  I am finding it much easier that marking off on a bit of paper. I change the colour of a weft on the screen to mark where I am whenever I take a break.

Getting the warp onto the loom took much longer than it should have done because of some silly errors that I made because I didn't properly think through how to thread two warps when using a double back beam.The photo below shows the moment when I  was halfway through sorting out my problems.

I also became distracted on a nice sunny day by a side project that I have on the go which is weaving a wall hanging. The idea comes from this book ( I felt that I should put on a pair of flared trousers just to read it). 
There are only three different techniques used and I am particularly taken with warp wrapping which has possibilities. I am not sure what I shall do with it when it is finished as my wife has issued a pre-emptive banning order!