Wednesday, January 27, 2016

12 Shaft Broken Twill Scarf

A few years ago I bought a skein of Handmaiden Sea Silk which is 70% silk and 30% seaweed fibre. My skein is in the colour run called ‘Corsica’ (you can look at it here) ~ very sweet and pretty.

I am really trying to reduce my stash of 'one offs' so I finally decided that it MUST be used.  I hunted for a pattern that would show the lovely colour changes and not overwhelm the colours completely; and I found a 12 shaft broken twill that I had never tried, which fit the bill perfectly.
The grist of this yarn is similar to 2/6 and the yarn is very lofty and soft.  I decided to make a scarf and since I had no idea how many ends I would get I just started to pull the 100 inch long warp.  I ended up with 147 ends and amended my pattern to fit this number.  I decided to sett the scarf at 20 ends per inch which gave me a width of about 7 inches.
As always I auditioned the weft yarns; and I tried a lovely soft blue, soft green and white all in 2/8 tencel.  I liked the white the best but ended up using 2/10 tencel for a less prominent weft.
This scarf was a real pleasure to weave and it seemed to fly off the loom because the treadling was a straight 1-12 repeat.
There are definitely two sides to the scarf with one predominantly warp dominant and the other weft dominant.
This scarf has amazing lustre and fabulous drape ~ a real winner in my books!
I loved weaving this pattern so much that I have put on another scarf warp in Tencel using up a few ends of the bobbins.

Friday, January 15, 2016

All Things Red - 12 Shaft Advancing Twill

We had somebody on Etsy buy all the red scarves that we had online in the WovenBeauty store.  So I needed to replenish the store with a new red scarf.  I like it when I have a direction to go with.
There are three reds in my Tencel bin - a Scarlet from Webs, a Cerise from Brassards, and Burgundy from Webs.  The pattern that I chose is an advancing twill and the warp is Charcoal grey.
Below is the weft auditions and the winner is the scarlet from Webs the bottom line.  The middle line is the cerise from Brassards and it looks like tomato soup, a bit orangey.  The top line is the burgundy which wasn’t red enough.
The pattern is very graphic with the large ovals and the X in the middle.  It is hard to see here but the centre panel between the ovals is quite pretty too.  I liked it so much that for the next scarf I lengthened those panels.
The weaving was exciting because the right hand floating selvedge would shred apart and the film canister would fall to the ground with a thump.  It happened at least four times.  I am not sure why it would break apart, I think that it could be a burr in the reed dent or the way that the thread was hanging off the loom was untwisting the thread allowing the thread fall apart.  But the finish project looks good.
The final garden shot is a Deodar Cedar (Cedrus deodara) that was heavily covered in water droplets and it just sparkled in the sunlight.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Eight Shaft Crackle Weave Scarf

I’ve had this scarf off the loom for over a week and I am finally getting ready to do the finishing touches, but here is a preview before the ends have been twisted.
The warp is 2/22 silk that I dyed last summer; I used Procion MX to paint half of the warp soft teal green and the other half a mid tone fuchsia, reversing the sides half way.   These two colours are magnificent together! I use several sections of sumac knotting to hold the warps in place while I paint them, it also holds everything in place while warping.
My pattern based on an eight shaft pattern I found on in Ralph Griswalds 'Crackle Weave Book'.  Of course I made a few changes to make the pattern work for me, but here is the draft I started with. is an amazing resource when you are looking for something new to try, but be prepared to be sucked in….you can look for hours and hours!
The repeat for the motif is 234 picks, so it is a challenging weave but still do-able because it is based on advancing twill so there are some nice runs.
This photo shows my simple warp stretcher made from paper clips and weights. I find keeping the warp taut while weaving helps with the selvedges.

My final scarf has 8 complete pattern repeats and I must admit I’m really pleased with the results.  I think next time I will work on the section that connects the motif to see if I can tighten it up a bit.
This scarf is amazingly supple because of the floats in the crackle weave structure, but it still has a lot of integrity because of the sections of plain weave, as seen in the close-up photo below ~ really a lovely pattern!
I just took this photo a few minutes ago ~ we have thick fog and this is the fog dripping off the Pieris japaonica blossoms.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Fresh Start to a New Year

Mum and I both have empty looms to start the New Year.  I have finished two twill scarves in red and gold, they are striking.  I’ll do a blog post soon on them.
Mum has just finished a hand dyed silk scarf in magenta and green.  The scarf hasn’t had its fringe twisted or been pressed but it is really special.  She’ll do a blog post soon, too!
On the warping board Mum has already pulled her newest scarf project.  It is Sea Silk in lime green, blues and purples.  I can’t wait to see it woven up.  It is not the best photo but I got photobombed by a kiwi!
My next project is going to be table linens using the Pima Cotton that we unravelled in September in September from a six ply into six individual balls.
Final Garden Shot is a Broad Tailed Hummingbird on top of the Cryptomeria japonica ‘Rasen’.  He has staked out the hummingbird feeder for the winter, this is the second year that this guy has overwintered in our neighbourhood.