Saturday, February 21, 2015

It's Complicated

The warp is 72/2 NZ merino in the most luxurious mid-gray in my long career as gray-yarn collector, slightly sticky, but soft. Mill end, I have a few more cones of the gray and several of indigo, but that's it. I kept it at 48EPI; on the loom the reed marks, or "bunches" are uncomfortably evident, but it washes out depending on the weft size.
I had culled weft candidates to nine silks; first above is C, the second will be B. A creates a grownup autumnal look but the silk is too dense and obliterates the characteristics of merio; D is roughly the same size but less dense. I have warp for three piece so I suspect it will be A or D.
The current weft is the brashest white-silver I have ever seen short of synthetics/metallics but it shimmers in this context. I have one small skein, from Mom's stash, and am keeping my fingers and toes crossed I have enough for a descent-length piece. The second piece will have a single, hand-dyed in pomegranate; it's been washed too vigorously the skeins are matted/felted but it is full of old-fashioned charm. (I am going to have to learn the silk jargon finally.)

The current piece is a milestone; I have wanted to weave something like this since the first day I wound wefts on a stick shuttle, but it took time collecting the right yarns, practice my techniques, draw up a suitable draft, and, well, getting around to it. It will be light-weight, almost translucent, soft but not airy like cashmere; this piece will drape. The weaving is going well, with nice selvedges. I know it will be a lovely piece, and I'm pleased I'm finally weaving this piece, although in retrospect I could have woven it some years ago, and it would have been even nicer had I stuck to my initial plan and made it twice as wide. No matter, I have checked a big item on my weaving To Do list. And I may try again if I can get suitable yarns again, perhaps silk both ways. And yet...

Don't get me wrong, part of me is ecstatic it's worked just as I imagined, it's just the kind of cloth I love, and I've finally done it. But there is a "but"; I have noticed a change in my taste of late and I find this draft too regular and boring; that was my first reaction when I wove the first inch. My ideal cloth has moved a few steps away from me, although I don't know what it looks like. I just know I have to do a bit of innovative thinking and rigorous experimentation.

Which is why weaving is so addictive.

6 comments:

  1. Meg, it looks absolutely amazing to me! Very beautiful and so complicated. Of course I have no idea what it all means, and I feel after all these years I should be a bit more knowledgable. But I'm not, so all I can do is admire your work purely with my artist's eye. Great stuff, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Weaving, like bookbinding, has a world of jargon, Carol, so very understandable. I imagined this would look lovely with a conservative white tuxedo, but I looked through my silk box and alas I don't have any more of these wefts, so it's going to be an extra short one. Pity.

    ReplyDelete
  3. It is beautiful, wish I could touch it and feel the drape and softness!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I think it IS going to have a lovely hand. And the bad news is, I really don't know how to estimate how far my yarns go, particularly wefts, but the good news is, I might get over 180cm. I wove 159cm so far and have two small bobbins of weft left!

    ReplyDelete
  5. It looks gorgeous! What fibre is this silver yarn? It is so shiny!

    ReplyDelete
  6. It's silk, Charlotte.

    ReplyDelete

I love comments. Thank you for taking the time!