Monday, March 9, 2009

Mine or Someone Else's??

The reason why I've been procrastinating, for which I haven't found the right words to explain, boils down to a choice between weaving something I know will work, or something I like and want to weave and put my name on, even if it's the less successful (in a conventioanl way) choice.

It's so long ago I keep having to refer to my December post, but I wrote "the warp, in two chains, has 1536 ends, enough for 16 inches/40cm at 96EPI" in 25 colors.

When I made this warp, the end product was going to be a 3- or 4-sided hanging installation with a light shining from the bottom up on the inside of the ... hanging thing, but secured at the top and weighted at the bottom, so it could rotate. With that in mind, I created a few drafts that showed off the warp-wise color transition, without obvious weft-wise distraction. I wanted a continuum or a relationship from one panel to the next as the whole thing rotated. As drafts these aren't overly exciting, but as a hanging installation piece, I thought it would look... contained... not distracted... clean and simple. Perhaps like a "nice" interior piece. Here's an example:

This pic is in landscape, but the piece would have been about 2 meters long and around 40 centimeters wide, and I get the feeling the draft would have enhanced the main attraction, the colors. At least the changes of shapes wouldn't have competed with the color changes.

But I decided some time ago I was going to weave the warp into three or four shawls instead, and as it has become my (good) habit, I tried other threading. In the one below, the threading still advances, but the repeat is greater, so the change in the (... ok, I'm struggling with the explanation,) pattern is more gradual. And there is far more weft-wise design changes, or divisioins. I'm not sure how this will work with the warp color changes.

I inserted a few random colorchanges in the draft here and I was horrified how the colors overtook the shapes, though these colors are not accurate representation of the real warp.

In the draft below, I used the threading from the top draft, and the treadling in the second draft, and came up with a draft much too horizontally-stripy to use in a gradated warp.

Sometime ago when I was on the "inevitable cloth" high, I think I wrote that I wanted the color transition to... go hand in hand with the shape transition; at least not have one get in the way of the other. I see that I've been making many weft-stripe style drafts and worry these won't work harmonously with the current warp.

I believe the top draft and similar will produce the more harmonious, appealing end product, but I can't help feeling I've seen many pieces like these before. I love the second draft and similar because they are the indulgent, Geek Drafts which feel like "my" work. I am having to decide between weaving pieces that will probably be more successful but which I don't feel are uniquely mine, and pieces which are probably less successful but to which I feel more attached.

And I'm not re-threading 1536 ends mid-warp.


  1. Do you really know which one will be most successful, or is it guessing?

    Does it not show, which one you like the most yourself? Isn't that a success in it self? And isn't that selling?

    Sorry, just questions.

  2. wow. that's all just gone way over my head

    i'm still in the land of 2/2 twill

  3. KD, we'll that's one point I was pondering as I wrote the post last night. I don't which is more successful, but the series I like less, I'm just guessing, makes more sense.

    Humble Bumble, most of my drafts are twill-based. As the lovely Bonnie Inouye said, "Play with the tie-up; play with the threading." And I mostly play with the threading because I haven't got to the tie-up yet except on a few occasions. And never underestimate the power of the 2/2 twill; it took me seven years to get through plain weave, and still for the really nice yearns, like my cashmeres, 2/2 yields the very best hand.

  4. not being a sophisticated not educated weaver I rely on my eye.
    So please take what I say as just that...lynne speaking about what she likes.

    I like version 1 for the simplicity and allowing the colors strength to show. It looks elegant and lovely.

    I also like version 3 for the complexity and daring and balancing the warps strips with a weft that I can't fathom how to weave.

    Being me...I would do the most scary. Version 3. But then again I'm not in Nelson for you to throw things at when the frustration peaks.

    its gonna be groovalicious no matter what you do! LOVE the colors.

    my captua "ovilyper" reminds me of your colors.

  5. And of course you'd be right... The first is the most elegant, I see. Lucky thing is, the first and the third are the same threading! Leaning... leaning...

  6. Update: I was going for the threading that allows Draft 1 and possibly Draft 3, because Lynne used the e-word, and I'm a sucker for that description.

    Then I realized in order to use that threading, I'd have to move around 70-odd heddles, or make 70-odd temporary heddles. So in the end, it was easy - I'm threading in the second draft threading. But I've also combined that threading with the first draft treadling, which maintains the atmosphere of the first draft somewhat.

    OK, by "I'm threading", I mean I've still a LOOOOONG way to go.


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