Thursday, January 19, 2006

Step by Step

Progress is being made.

The black and white band that was on the loom is finished:

ribbons

These are all the same technique (the other two were blogged here). The two on the right are silk, both the same pattern threading, but one woven with a speckled background, and the other woven with a solid background.

I made a mistake in weaving at the beginning: the little center band is not picked up correctly. This created what looks like a three strand braid rather than a four strand braid (the correct pickup is on the bookmark on the right):

braid draft

But I liked it well enough, and it is simpler than the four strand, so I drew up a pattern for it, and will set it up for the CNCH demonstration. It has fewer warps, and would most likely be easier for someone to work (I haven't tried it on the loom yet, but I will before I do the demo!). I wanted something simple, that people could actually work, and work enough of to go home with a bookmark. Actually, they can't go *home* with it, because I can't cut it off until the whole band is done, but I'll bring envelopes so they can have it mailed.

Anyway, the loom was clear, time to warp up for the new bag band. I set up a draft, to mimic the border pattern already woven on the loom, and re-plied the yarns I had on hand:

band yarns1

Charleen asked what makes a good pile yarn, and basically: anything. But the best yarns will be able to *bloom* once the knots are tied, so soft spin and loose plying (if any) make for a better blooming yarn:

yarn close up
This photo shows the yarn, as pile yarn, used to tie off the skeins, and the re-plied yarn, ready to be blocked.

band yarns

I had to make a few PVC blockers: the re-plied yarn is *very* squirrelly, and I wanted to block it firmly. I filled up the sink and just submerged the yarn, niddy noddies and all, then let it dry on the blocker.

I set up the pattern, and started weaving with the warp yarn as weft:

wool band

It was too heavy, so I started over with a finer handspun weft:

wool band2

I think you can see the difference (you could certainly feel it: the heavy weft made for a looser fabric). The new band is moving along, but might just be the prototype. I will await final judgement, but I think I want to spin some finer yarn and try yet again. Good thing I enjoy the process!

7 Comments:

Blogger June said...

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2:27 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

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2:55 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

Note to the curious: June posted a comment pointing out some suggestive language that I had inadvertently used. I changed my post, and deleted our comments, so that my blog would not end up in some *blog Follies* at some point. Phew! Thanks June!!

3:14 PM  
Blogger Charleen said...

Now you've made me even curiouser :-)

Good news about the pile yarn. I have tons of soft, loosely plied yarn. That's all I seemed to make for the first few years.

I need to look up some information about pick up and try your draft. I think Rachel Brown's book has something. I keep borrowing Helene Bress' inkle book from the library - maybe it's time I buy it.

4:43 PM  
Blogger gw said...

Funny! I had been about to point out that "blooming" used to be a euphemism for curse words in the good old days before such became common parlance - although you could just possibly have known that? Think My Fair Lady/ Eliza at Ascot.
Anyway, I love the braids. Bloomin' nice braids.

2:38 AM  
Blogger LadyV said...

Very nice bands and very inspiring to me since I am new to weaving. I have been considering purchasing an inkle loom but not sure of which brand would work best for me.

5:00 AM  
Blogger beadlizard said...

Befuddled here -- for some reason I am not drawn magnetically to the latest band, and I nearly always like your things above all others. Do you think it's that my eyes are having trouble seeing the white on orange? That the blue draws the eye to the edge? Hmmm. I love the design, but there is something odd in the way the colors interact. Do you see what I mean? Will that effect disappear if you sew multiples of that band together to make a bag and thus have sets of blue parallel lines creating almost a background effect?

The three bands in the top photo -- how wide are they? Do you ever *sell* such things? Pretty... --syl

10:36 AM  

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