Friday, February 27, 2015

Loom is fixed.

Where are the days going?  One more day and it'll be autumn; must make the most of the sunshine while we have it.

So, I finished two garments for the Festival fashion parade and I hear they have both been accepted and I finished three pieces for the Exhibition, well one really, the other two were woven last year.  Selection is next week.

Since then I have been working on trying to solve the fault with my compu dobby loom.  As I wove away it would just stop, like putting your foot on the car accelerator and nothing there.  Sometimes it would happen after two pics or 200, or anything in between, very inconsistent.  I could trace it back to the start of last year when I changed computers.  We tried everything we could think of to fix the problem and in the end I gave up and accepted it was as good as it would get.  Seems a strange thing to say but I was kind of relieved to learn of another weaver with same loom and same problem and then a third, so, OK this had to be fixed.

Many emails have gone back and forth, even across the Tasman sea.  As I was reading some of them to Peter a light bulb went off, he emailed No. 1 son who came back with the solution to my problem.  Not a hic cup since but unfortunately it doesn't seem to be the answer to the fixit of the other two looms.  I am so grateful to all the help from the weaving community and it is such a pleasure to be weaving properly.

If you're interested it was because I was using a 9 pin to USB converter cable which are notoriously unreliable.

What did I weave on while testing the loom?  Cotton linen towels which I tied on to the previous warp.  This one is echo weave with a pale green (which looks dirty white) ramie weft over green cotton and olive cotton linen.  I didn't realise I was getting long floats at the points, probably not the best for towels.  Don't know how the ramie will work as a towel but this experiment will let me know.
 And the last one is 4 colour double weave which is looking rather exciting though in reality not so bright.  What is showing violet is more a grey.  There are a couple of others on the roll so look forward to seeing them soon.  A fun way to experiment.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Exhibition deadline approaching fast

Hurry, hurry, hurry!  I thought I had another week to create a piece for Creative Fibre exhibition but, guess what, the form has to be in by Sunday!
Yikes, I've just tied on the warp!

Well actually I took the photo this morning and have now started weaving, not without its problems.  
You might notice the MP3 player resting on the beam.  I've been listening to "The Master's of Rome" series by Colleen McCullough and rather enjoying them.  Up to "Fortune's Favourites" so will enjoy that tomorrow while weaving.
Also have to finish and label garments for the fashion parade to be delivered by Wednesday so best get on.  Catch you later.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Some things just keep going wrong!

I see its quite a while since I talked with you.  I have been very busy weaving, sewing and knitting but not things I can share as some are for the Festival fashion parade, some for the exhibition at Festival and others for my tutoring.

And some things have gone really really wrong!  Lets just say I wove a complete alpaca silk shawl before discovering an echo threading with 840 threads was wrong - a week designing, a week threading and weaving and not until I cut it off did I find the booboo.  Woh is me.  And what's worse the whole point of the exercise was to then expand the warp threads the full width of my loom to weave a banner for festival.  Well!  I couldn't believe so many things could go wrong, even this morning when I wove 30 rows of the pattern and discovered it was scrolling backwards.  More unweaving.  On the right track now and hoping all will be straight forward.  I mean its not complicated.
Now what do we call this - American? 4 colour double weave - two colours in warp and two in weft.
Marian Stubenitsky's 4 colour double weave has 4 colours in the warp and 2 in the weft.

Lets see if I can explain what went wrong.  Make a new drawdown by taking the threading then draw the weft exactly as drawn in.  One diagonal line through the tie up and you get this.  If reduced to its tiniest form all looks well (as I did) but enlarge it slightly (click on image to enlarge) and you will see the diagonal lines are different.  Not a mirror image of each other.
 As they should be below.
A simple way to check before weaving 2.2 metres of alpaca silk which is now in my wardrobe waiting for winter (which we are told will be late this year).

Green Poncho

Remember the post back here
where everything looked so green and the pile of yarn I've accumulated over the years.
It is now a poncho.  Well some of it is, there's still an awful lot left.  In the brief moment I put it on, on a 28 degree C day, it looked as good as I had hoped.  I really must get a 'dummy' that reflects my robust size as it would photograph better.  I haven't decided if this will be part of  the tutor's display at festival in April or part of the workshop I'm presenting on using our unique yarns.