Saturday, September 8, 2012

Three Weeks from Tomorrow

"Friends(hip)" Practice/Sampling
I needed to make sure a double weave technique I read somewhere long time ago works, so I threaded a sample table loom.
I wanted to understand the mechanism and practice, so I chose a simple twill for the pattern side; the final piece will have a Self-Portrait-based draft. The inlay (I hope this is the correct term) side where your yarns  will create (a) colorful shape/s is in plain weave. Because I've never done inlay or tapestry-style weaving, I sampled with the plain weave side up, which works well because when I want the inlay yarns to show on the pattern side, I can lift the extra warp/s/shaft/s instead of pressing it/them down.

You get the picture. As it were.

What I learned:
  1. The two sets of warps most definitely need to go on different warp beams. This table loom has two warp beams but one is permanently occupied by a permanently unfinished cotton warp, so I'm saving a bunch of plastic one-litter milk jugs. However, the samples seem to do OK so far with all warps on one beam.
  2. The inlay-ed yarns in the sample are thrums, but the wool warp in four reds are is what I hope to use in the final piece. 
  3. Because your yarns come in such a variety of widths, for each pick on the inlay side I need to weave between one and five, perhaps six, picks on the pattern side. (The very think "ribbon" from Judy Nolan, the one that looks like a narrow strip of needlepoint canvas, I might cut into a narrower strip. Or not.)
  4. If the number of pattern-side picks vary, it's quicker to weave on a table loom rather than on the computer dobby loom. 
  5. In which case, I'd like to simplify the lifting a great deal, so even with an identical threading, the "picture" on the pattern side will be far more abstract than in the "Self-Portrait" piece, which is not a bad thing. 
  6. The lifting will probably be more or less regular, so the "picture" may have directionality. These can be tested on the computer in the first instance. 
  7. I learned how Pat finishes her tapestries. I will have to experiment a little, but I need to adopt a tapestry-like wet/moist finish technique for this piece.  
  8. This warp sett is 36EPI, 18 on each layer. The pattern side is probably good as is, but I'd like to sample the inlay side at a looser sett. 
  9. The inlay side need not be plain weave but something else, for example, a very simple twill. I wonder if this is worthwhile, since it also means sacrificing one or more shafts to the inlay side, but it also adds variety to the way the inaly-ed yarns appear on the pattern side.
  10. The inlay side: when I showed the group the sample, the consensus recommendation then was long/vertical rectangles. I think one or two rectangles in identical width would be nice as the final piece will be longer than it will be wide. Two rectangles will require a bit of fiddling, (currently being sampled on the loom and quite fiddly,) and again, I wonder if it is worthwhile.  
I need to concentrate on the "Self-Portrait" motif/design next as "Friends(hip)" will also be based on the same. At the same time, I need to practice weaving on this loom/warp some more.

"Self-Portrait" warp will be multi-colored 2/20 cotton, 42EPI, 12 inches wide. I'm making a regular 8 meter warp and make scarves or something else afterwards.(36EPI if I start to panic.)

"Pillars" warp is off the loom and I vacuumed the workshop this afternoon. The last memento piece for myself was shorter than I had hoped - about 1 meter of the design part plus a bit of plain weave at the top and bottom. I wasn't sure how much warp I had left, so the design is awkward and out of proportion, but it is small enough to go somewhere in my house.

"Merchandise":  I started to think of cloth-covered buttons after Cally's Open Studio posts. I'll think about it if I have time.

EDIT:  Point 9 is incorrect; using more than 2 shafts in the inlay side does not add variety to the appearance of your yarns on the pattern side since it's all about which pattern shaft/s I lift. Which, considering the time I have left, eliminates having to experiment this aspect. Grin.

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