Sunday, August 7, 2011

Love in a Mist

I had a full pirn of Azure Tencel and two hanging selvages already wound and in film canisters that didn’t work with the last project so I decide to build a project around them. I have been doing a series of lace weaves with Bamboo warp and Tencel weft so I looked at the small Bamboo section of the stash and luckily there was one that would work!This may come as a surprise (not!) but I wanted to try a new lace weave and Swedish lace came to mind. I liked the pictorial properties that the lace has. I found a draft on for hearts on 16 shaft showing hearts facing each other and changed the draft to suit my loom, which only has 12 shafts. I ended up with a 9 shaft pattern.Due to the size of the hearts and not wanting to cram them too tightly I was only able to get three hearts across and for added interest the hearts are offset. When I saw them on the loom I was a little concerned because the floats were quite long at just a smidgen over ¼”.The weaving went quite quickly once I actually sat down to weave, funny how that works! I took my time and measured every pattern repeat as I went because it would have been noticeable if they were differently sized. I didn’t have to do any un-weaving as miraculously each pattern repeat was the right size which is a first for me!At the halfway point I changed the direction of the hearts, because I wanted the ends of the scarf to match. There was an optical illusion that made the upside down heart rounder and shorter, but they weren’t!After washing I stuck the scarf outside and learned something interesting. Bamboo takes a very long time to dry but if you stick it outside at 35C with a light breeze in about an hour it will be dry!This scarf is so lacy, truly lovely – even with the wrinkles!There is a shiny side and a matte side to this scarf. The shiny side is the weft dominant side, the Tencel side, and the hearts gleam. The matte side is the warp dominant side which is where the Bamboo really takes over.When I was twisting the fringe I was using a cookbook called Mediterranean Diet to hold the scarf and that gave me the idea to call the scarf Love in a Mist because it reminds me of the delicate blue flowers of the same name. They are also known as Nigella and the seeds are edible, tasting of pepper and lemon and is mostly used in Middle Eastern Food. The picture is from the herb garden that lines the path to the front door.The scarf has a wonderful drape and I love the combination of Bamboo and Tencel. Bamboo has such a richness of colour and the Tencel adds lightness and shine. It is a wonderful match as long as the Bamboo is used as the warp and Tencel is the weft ~ reversing the two can create linen-like hard selvage turns as the Bamboo keeps it round shape and doesn’t snug up quite as well.

The heart shapes are really subtle and not ‘cutsie’, just lovely and elegant.


Louisa said...

Really interesting how bamboo and tencel behave so differently in weaving since they're both just different types of rayon. Thanks for the bamboo/warp, tencel/weft hint!

Unknown said...

I love your hearts-scarf!!!