Friday, October 11, 2019

Non-Day

Hi. I'm just thinking out loud today. Ignore me if I don't make sense; it's one of those "I'm not sure where I'm going with this" post.

I have what I call "non-days"; my diary shows a few every month in surprisingly regular intervals. Some days I'm just exhausted; some days I can't decide which project to take up and pace around the house mumbling instead of doing any of them; but other days I may sense my mind thinking/working but I don't know this until a few days/weeks/months later if that had been the case. Non-days are demoralizing especially when I'm working on something time-sensitive, but sometimes I see solutions so simple I want to pinch/punch myself for not noticing earlier, while other times, well, I do come up with options so ingenuous I can even allow myself to be impressed. This one was somewhere between the two.

Wednesday's Town Day, (another tag in my paper diary,) was fun, seeing friends and having a nice lunch in a beautiful setting. And getting a few errands out of the way. But I was exhausted Thursday, all talked out, (because, goodness, I talked a lot!) and as frustrating as it was not getting back to the elephants, I had one big non-day. In the evening, I got sick of myself and started working on the draft.
You know I've decided to weave two skinny, long pieces and join the two in the middle. This was going to be one half, with "red" borders on top, bottom, a wider one on what will be the sides of the blanket, (left here,) and narrow ones for the join in the middle. The second piece was going to be woven upside down so the wide/narrow borders will swap places.
Last night I couldn't sleep because I knew the draft was not right; I don't want a red border in the middle as I wanted the join to be as inconspicuous as I can manage. So today I auditioned seven ways found in "Finishes in the Ethnic Tradition," by Suzanne Baizermand and Karen Searle, 1994. Choosing the right one was easy - one that goes from bottom to top and looks the same on both sides. Right. Then I got to thinking...

I can weave comfortably up to about 60-62cm on the loom, roughly 24-25 inches wide per piece at maximum around 900 ends, which allows only four columns of elephants per piece, eight across the blanket plus borders. After wet-finishing, I'll be lucky to get 110cm width for the whole blanket, which may be OK for a new born, but probably not when the child is, oh, two? And there is a reason I call these "toddler" blankets; I want them in use for some years. (Oh, how I miss the days I could weave just short of 80cm wide!)

But if I turn the draft and weave the pachyderms sideways, width on the loom becomes height of each piece, and weaving length becomes the width of the blanket, and if I'm ready to join three pieces horizontally, the blanket can be whatever width I like, and I can add "side" borders at the start and finish of each piece. But wait, if I can forego weaving in borders, I could weave three pieces as lanned, and join them vertically, and get whatever width I like. Or, weave the two side pieces, take out the border warp ends, and weave the middle piece.

I know the approximate shrinkage when the warp is merino and the weft cashmere. If I am to turn, I'll need to sample with the yarns the other way around and check the shape/proportion. 

The blanket is due the end of the month.

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Oh, yes, haven't forgotten about last Sunday dinner.

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