Sunday, August 20, 2017

Paua blankets

A bunch of striking blankets will be in Pauanesia shop soon.
The brief was for Ruru (Morepork, New Zealand's native owl), but we've decided I missed the mark and Paua will be the theme.
My 8 shaft Nitschke loom is set up for blanket weaving all the time and I tie one warp on to the next.  I've always tied my warps on since I first started weaving for shops back in .. oh ... about 1985.  I remember I was sitting cross legged on the floor in a half built house in front of a table loom thinking how silly it was for me to rethread when it was the same pattern and I only wanted a different colour warp.  Then I figured if I had move that one thread per dent I really needed to keep them in order so put in two rows of tabby as a cross.  (Not saying this is the right or wrong way; its just the way I do it and it works for me.)
This time I must have been generous with the length of each blanket because I cut it too fine and had to pull the knots to the front of the reed to have enough warp for tassels and my cross.
I love them and fun to weave with the different stripes.  Each had to be planned before starting to finish within the designated length but obviously I wasn't accurate enough.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Deflected Double Weave

I've been having a play with Deflected Double Weave.  
Big breath - I did a sample!
Thought I could carry the weft up the selvedge of each layer without cutting and burying it in the fabric.
See those loops, I don't think so!  And its worse with the white layer.  As you see sometimes its over the other layers and sometimes its under.  I'd get one right then forget with the second layer.  And its no point in just threading the end into the unwoven areas, it simply fell out, especially during fulling.  I had to use what I call the magic loop method described here.
Wove the first scarf (on the left) but thought the weft threads needed some room to move so wove the second putting a 4mm knitting needle between stripes (right) which certainly gave a different effect but decided the benefits did not outweigh the extra time and effort.  After that I "eye balled" it.
This scarf was intended for me to go with a top I'm rather fond of but turns out the top is more black, white and grey than taupe and didn't go at all.
As I was using 12 of my 16 shafts I wondered if I could use a couple more shafts and take the weft threads right to the selvedge - yep sure can.  
Another variation using a variegated thread, probably from Anna Gratton Ltd, as one of the warp stripes

And then I got really adventurous with the software and worked out three separate layers which I placed at each end of the scarf.

And the third edition I used a soft green instead of purple to cover the variegated layer.
As much as I admire deflected double weave I've decided its not for me at the moment.  All that shuttle changing and threading in ends ....
I'll probably have another go later with different threadings and treadlings but for now its shuffled down the list of things to try.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Silver fern shibori scarf

Having woven a scarf length, pulled the resist threads for shibori, soaked and painted the dye on the "snake" and steamed it then waited overnight for it to dry on top of the hot water cylinder its time to see if my idea actually worked.

I tentatively cut the knots and pull a few of the threads out.  Silver side showing, looks ok.

Flip it over to see the chatreuse side, oh yes, I'm happy.

Close up of grey side.

And ready to go.

Merino yarn with some "cornsilk" in the weft which will hold the texture when washed.