Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Guild of Canadian Hand Weavers Bulletin Samples Part 1

Now that the Guild of Canadian Weavers has had a chance to mail out their newsletter for 2018, I can tell you all about making the samples for the year. A small group of us from the Qualicum Weavers and Spinners Guild decided to volunteer to weave the samples for the year.  We chose to use Orlec for the samples as it has lots of bright and bold colours, it is also very easy to use and readily available in Canada.  Mum did the math and worked out that for each set of samples we would need 3 8oz tubes of warp, 3 8oz tubes of weft and ½ tube of contrast yarn for spacers in both warp and weft.  To be on the safe side we choose to order an extra tube for the warp and weft as it would be the same dye lot if we needed it.

The warp length was 8.5 yards long and 606 ends for each of the samples.  Mum did the Spring 2018 sample and I did the Winter 2018 sample. Each warp was six samples wide.
I pulled each bout of samples separately, 96 threads plus the 6 threads of the separating yarn.  I had two thread colours in the warp so it took a little longer to pull but each bout took me 40 minutes, so fairly time consuming.
The warp pulled on beautifully because of the smoothness of the Orlec, which is orlon fibre.  We did 6 samples across, for a width of 25 inches.  The samples were 4 inches wide in the reed; we decided that we liked large samples, so the recipients could really see a good section of the weave.
The sample is a four shaft crackle but I separated out the samples onto 8 shafts because I don’t have enough heddles on shafts 1-4 to do them all.  The threading took 15 minutes for each set of samples, with only 100 threads and on four shafts it was quick.

As the samples are not much wider than a tea towel warp putting the warp through the reed and tying onto the cloth beam didn’t take too much time, but I forgot to time it, I'd guess it was about an hour in all.
The samples are an absolute joy to weave.  Each four inch sample only takes 10 minutes to weave.  It was really easy to find to time to do a couple of repeats at a sitting.
My sample, Winter 2018 was the polychrome crackle.  The warp colours were purple and green and the weft was orange.  Really bright and cheerful.
I did 55 passes of samples to make a total of 330 samples.  There are a couple of extras which is good because I had 3 samples that had errors.  The samples are great also because you get to leave your ends hanging out as they will be clipped later.
The finished fabric is crumpled up on the counter and you can see some of the iridescence starting to appear.
I will leave the samples here for now.  The next blog post is going to be about preparing the samples for the newsletter.

Final Garden Shot is our first snow of the year on the New Zealand Flax.

1 comment:

Loom With A View said...

Thanks so much for this. I enjoy receiving the samples with my GCW Bulletin. It is fun to read about the making of them!