Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Week That Was, Almost

I wound my dyed skeins, in some cases with tremendous difficulty, because I accidentally ran some of them through a complete washing cycle in the machine!


Anyhoo, from left to right:
Far left, top: Mom picked cotton when she visited Uzbekistan some years ago, and spun a relatively thick single yarn; I dyed this in the natural indigo during the workshop.

Far left, bottom: cone of unknown origin, possibly silk but maybe cotton or linen(??), which I had for ages; one skein dyed carefully in diluted synthetic indigo during the workshop. I'm thinking of burn-testing after the hey fever season is finished.

Second left Stack: more cone of unknown origin; skeins dyed during Indigo Duty day in laundry net, and then accidentally "washed" in the machine. I intended for this and the next silk to be dyed very unevenly, but the contrast is smaller than I had hoped.

Second right stack: Italian tussah silk, treated the same as above, tragically.

Far Right stack: thick-ish Japanese cotton, possibly mixed with something else; treated the same as the previous two, but this is still usable in a weft for a garment.

I'll have to sample, but I hesitate to weave anything to sell with these yarns because they have been damaged in the process, so they might become something or rather for Ben and myself. Mom's cotton, I hope to weave something she can use.

To the right of the skein is a scarf I found in my samples basket I hadn't seen in a few years; it's a miniature of Paua.

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Esmae Emerson is safely installed in her Melbourne home, and she sent me some pictures of her Wellington Wada workshop experiments. Either she is very quick to pick up techniques, or the workshop was better organized. (Or, I'm terribly slow to turn theory into action, which is the most probable explanation.) Look at some of the dye projects she got out of the workshop!! Phtos are posted with Esmae's permission.

Machine- and hand-stitched

Large-scale Lahariya

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Recycling the warp proved to be tedious beyond belief I had to force myself to work on it, but it took three afternoons over two weeks. At least twice I nearly passed out from the tedium, and I'm not joking; see my serious face? And it was as if this warp was holding my loom hostage and I really, really wanted to weave, so finally, on Tuesday, I finished halving the shawl width and doubling the length.

I wove some samples using drafts from Handweaving.net yesterday, but nothing stood out. I looked at the sample again this morning; looked at some past samples with the same variegated merino warp/variegated merino/mohair weft combination; looked at more drafts on Handweaving.net, and decided I wanted to make an uncomplicated but in places slightly lacy draft. With this yarn combination, the weft does not change sizes after wet-finishing, so a plain weave areas become slightly lacy, and the overall cloth translucent.

When using variegated wefts, I like it when the changes of color suits the width of the woven piece so color patches are created and they move like clouds. OK, so it's not going to be my IT piece, but it'll be a nice scarf.

I also found this sample. I know I dyed the warp yarns, I know I had these weft yarns at one point, so this is my sample, but I don't recall weaving it. Chances are, I chose the warp/weft color combination based on this little piece and wove small scarves. But I have been thinking I would love to weave something in wool with many many bright colors, and I wouldn't mind using all of these colors, and even more, all in one piece. How I've changed in using colors.

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Tomorrow our last term of figure drawing starts. I'm looking forward to it.

5 comments:

  1. The indigo-dyed yarns are awesome, Meg. Just gorgeous. Use them well!

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  2. I will, but cautiously. Handling them, I still get my fingers blue, too, even though everything was rinsed at least twice.

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  3. alrite meg. dropping you a line cos i scrapped my facebook account and didn't want you thinkin i'd just defriended you.

    also, as i'm posting again i thought it'd be the thing to go round blogs saying hello again. i think this is what they call advertising. but it's ok, i think, cos i'm not selling anything

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  4. Oh, did you? No more witty left-wing views? I need a good daily dose of them, you know. Well, glad to hear you're back in school and learning stuff. I hope you have more of the weaving components this year.

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