Thursday, August 5, 2010

There is Not Enough Written about Wet Finishing!!

I'm constantly amazed how little is written about wet finishing, even in books for beginners, (this one stands above or below all others in mind.) It irks me, eh, because until you wet finish, all you've got is an unattractive net. Is this a problem? Is it just me? Does this happen only if you teach yourself weaving, but is covered thoroughly in beginner workshops?

I don't know how I learned the importance of wet finishing myself, but I think I can thank my control-freak-ness; I still sample to death whenever I buy a new (to me) brand/fiber/color of yarns, (same fiber contents, same brand, different colors or different dye lot behave differently,) and by sampling, I go all the way to wet finishing/pressing/drying. And then and only then I can finalize on setts, picks or the weave structure, and how I press it. I would even go as far to say wet finishing has the potential to be one of the "secret ingredients" for weavers that they don't share, or would have to kill you if you find out. So, I understand if you don't want to share, because I certainly don't want you to go around the world on a killing spree!

This is how I do wool or wool mixes. And my process for cashmeres and delicate cottons are much the same, though with cottons, I'm less worried about agitating.

My kitchen/table-related cotton and cottolins, I put wash it in a warm or hot cycle and tumble dry; after I start using them, I wash them in cold or warm cycle and tumble dry.

To my knowledge, Laura Fry is the only person that wrote a book about the subject. I have it, of course, but I've only ever gazed at it and felt the samples, as you might have guessed. I'd better read it some day. Here's a link to her blog posts labeled "Magic in the Water", which was the title of her book.

Please share your thoughts/knowledge: if you've posted anything about wet finishing in the past, including what not to do, please, leave a link in the comment, OR, if you're on Facebook, share here, please, and I'll compile all the information in one place later.

EDIT: I went through half a dozen of your blogs searching the key words "wet finish" intending to start putting links, but some related to yarns (and I must read these) while others to weaving. So I decided not to fish through them at this time.

EDIT: And there is no longer any excuses: Laura Fry's DVD/download is out from Interweave

2 comments:

  1. Peggy Osterkamp's new book, "Weaving for Beginners" has some sections on wet finishing but Laura's book is the best book!

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