Friday, November 26, 2021

Ten Shaft Networked Scarves

Both of the 10 Shaft Networked scarves are off the loom and will be ready to put up on Etsy as soon as we get some weather good enough to take photos.

I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly I was able to finish them.  Frankly, I usually dawdle along quite slowly because I have the attention span of a gnat!  

The scarves were woven with different coloured wefts but otherwise identical, the first scarf had purple weft. While I was weaving it I thought it high lighted the pattern really well, so I was stoked.  These photos were all  taken in the millisecond that we got decent sunlight last week, so the fringes had not been twisted yet.

The second scarf had black weft and it showed off the pattern even better.

Here they are side by side, just as they came off the loom and haven’t been washed yet.  I was really hesitant to use the black weft, but frankly it’s the real winner of the weft competition.

This is a lovely pattern to weave and I highly recommend it. It has everything going for it, an easy threading sequence, a treadling sequence that is easy to remember and selvedges that are smooth and even.

Since the garden is far too soggy to work right now.  I have been indulging myself by baking some of the Technical Challenges from the Great British Bake Off.  This is one of the challenges from the newest season... Chocolate Babka.  Thankfully the family loves to try new things and this one was a real winner.

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Questions, Questions

Another grey and blustery day on Vancouver Island which means lots of loom time for me, and time to start a new project.

When I want to weave something my first thought is ‘What do I have on hand?’ That means a trip to the yarn closet and a good hunt around.  This time 2/8 Tencel jumped out at me.

Once the yarn has been chosen my next question is ‘What does that yarn make well?’ for example  I would not use linen warp for garments, so I try to think of how to use the yarn in a way that is fit for purpose.  Tencel makes lovely scarves, shawls and fine garments as you can see from the drape of the scarf below.  So a scarf it is.

Now comes the hard part, my next question is ‘What pattern?’  So a search through my binder of things I have previously woven is a good place to start.  I have chosen to weave a 10 shaft networked twill.

The hardest choice for me is the next in line ‘What colour(s)?  This is when I go to my yarn binder and see what I have available in my yarn of choice.  

Luckily I have plenty of Tencel to choose from and this time I decided to use them all!  Well, maybe not all.  An autumnal gradient of colours will work really well as the pattern lends itself to stripes.

Last choice and ultimately the one I pfaff about the most ‘What weft colour?’  Today was definitely a when in doubt . . . purple or black.  So I decided to pull the warp for two scarves and make one with each colour.

The warp looks just lovely once it was on the loom.  I love the way you get a forecast of pattern by the way the heddles line up.

I started with the purple warp fist and I’m really pleased with the design so far.

Today is such a dreary day I decided to make Staffordshire Oatcakes for lunch....these are super tasty, oaty crepes that are perfect eaten as is with just a pat of butter.  But...wrapped around bacon and scambled eggs they actually hit heavenly!

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Eight Shaft Crackle (Echo) Scarves

I wanted to wait until we had a sunny day to take photos of the two Crackle Weave Scarves that I wove earlier this month.  I waited and waited and....well, you get the picture.  We have had the dullest October I can remember and this week we are in store for what the meteorologists are calling ‘A remnant of a typhoon which has become a ‘Weather Bomb’! Yikes!

I turned on all the lights and stood by a window and was able to get these few photos and frankly they do not show the iridescence much.  Here are a few of the better beauty shots.

The first scarf I wove on the blue and turquoise warp was with a greyed teal weft.  This scarf is super subtle and gives off a faint lime green sheen in the light.

Unfortunatly the photo really hids the pattern which is lovely and shows up beautifully in real life.

The second scarf that I wove on the same warp was with cayenne weft.  This scarf is much more iridescent and gleams red/purple and shows the pattern to much better advantage.

This is a really lovely pattern which has absolutely lovely selvedges, but to get them I had to weave with my bulldog stretchers and start my throws from the opposite edge than I normally would have.  It really pays to try out both ways before you commit to the weave.

Now I get to ‘fess up’ and tell you I made a threading error that only another weaver would notice, but, both Ngaire and I get to add another scarf to our collections.

We have been baking our way through all the Great British Bake Off Technical Challenges, much to my husbands delight and these are from Season 12 ~ Jammy Biscuits or Jammy Dodgers as they are fondly called.  British recipes tend to make small batches and this recipe only made 12 sandwich cookies, the perfect amount.  The cloth is Shadow Weave.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Twill Striped Cottolin Tea Towels

After the striped tea towels that I wove in June there was still some small cones of cottolin left so I decided to mke one more tea towel warp to finish the cones off.  I started with a draft that I had used last year that had ribbon like stripes thinking that it would be good in using up the all the colours.

This was a time consuming draft to make because I measured each colour separately in order to have an accurate thread count, and then I wound the thread back onto the cone.  This ensured that I could accurately make the stripes for the draft on the computer.  And then I finally pulled the actual warp.

I managed to finish seven cones in the warp!  You may be wondering what is at the bottom of the photo, that is the loom waste from the previous set of tea towels, I need it because I am short a couple of threads for the warp, just three lime green threads short.  

By the time that I started to weave the tea towels the back of the loom had become quite the tangle of hanging threads.  I decided that I didn’t like the look of some of the stripes, so I changed some of the colours out and ended up with 10 film canisters hanging off the back of the loom, yikes!

Next up is the auditioning for the weft colour, I tried out some pinks.  They were OK but pink can be hard to sell.

Next up was greens and the darker shades were OK but I didn’t think that they really worked with the pinks and purples in the stripes.

Then I tried white and dark purple, no more try outs needed the dark purple was the hands down winner.

I wove two tea towels in the dark purple which makes a set of quite lovely tea towels

For the second set of two tea towels I again auditioned different colours of blue for the weft and went with a dark blue called denim.

They are just as pretty as the first set of tea towels.

Weaving with cottolin is very dusty so I thought that I would show you some dust bunnies under my loom!

The tea towels are finished and are available on Esty.  Here are some of the beauty shots.

Twill striped Tea Towels with purple weft.  Esty listing for the tea towels.
Twill striped Tea Towels with dark denim blue weft.  Esty listing for the tea towels.
Final Garden Photo is Penstemon hartwegii 'Peptalk Cerise', the hot pink colour is amazing and it is one of the first plants to flower in the spring and it will continue flowering until the first hard frost.  The hummingbirds love it!

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

The Call Of The Loom

Now that’s a Canadian title if I ever heard one! Autumn has truly arrived on Vancouver Island and I have heard the call of the Loom, sounds like a good book. 

I want to weave something exciting and interesting as well as beautiful; something to really inspire me and I am always drawn to iridescence.  This made an Echo Weave the perfect choice.

I hauled out the Itten Star and started looking for warp and weft choices.  I searched for the post where I talk about this wonderful tool, only to find out that I have never done one!  I will do a complete post on this soon.

One colour combination that always creates iridescence is the Split Complement.  This is essentially two colours side by side on the colour wheel combined with the colour directly opposite them on the colour wheel.

I decided on Blue Purple and Aquamarine as my warp choice; they are placed in the warp in an Aquamarine, Blue, Aquamarine, Blue sequence.  The weft that was needed to make the Split Complement is in the Orange Red family. 

I got my Tencel yarns out and found that I only had three colours that fit the bill, Ruby, Spice and Cayenne.  I was immediately drawn to the Cayenne, but of course there was just a few grams on the tube and I was not sure if I would have enough.

Well, I’m a problem solver and so I decided to put on a two scarf warp which would allow me to actually measure out how many grams of weft yarn this scarf would take.

For the first scarf I chose to simplify my treadling and to make a scarf that was going to come out completely differently than the Echo Weave, but still had the same feel and yarn use.  

I chose to use an Analogous Colour combination.  This combination is one where three colours sit side by side on the colour wheel; for example, blue, turquoise and green are analogous colours.  I looked for it on the Itten Star and found that this type of colour combination is not included, so I jury rigged my own to show you.

My weft choice for the Aquamarine and Blue Purple warp is Greyed Teal.....these are all very close in colour depth so the overall look of the weave is tone on tone shimmer.

I am almost finished weaving this scarf and it looks like it will be truly lovely.  Because of the colours I have chosen, it will be just a nice Crackle Weave scarf.

I was asked what this little dohicky that I use to hold spare warp ends was, so I looked it up and it is called a Yarn Holder or a Knitting Bobbin and I think is was made by Boye.

We have added two more weaving drafts up for sale.  The first draft is an original Clasped Weft pattern that is on 4 harnesses.  This draft is called Piano Keys Clasped Weft Scarf.  Etsy listing for Piano Keys Clasped Weft Scarf Weaving Pattern.   

The second draft is an original Diversified Plain Weave pattern that is on 12 harnesses.  This draft is called Music Notes Diversified Plain Weave Scarf.  Etsy listing for Music Notes Diversified Plain Weave Scarf Weaving Pattern.

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Weaving Drafts for Sale

I have been thinking for a while that I would like to sell some of our original drafts, especially the 12 shaft designs as they are hard to come by.  So when I got a message asking if I sold weaving drafts, I took that as the push that I needed to get started.

It is surprising the time and information that needs to go into each pattern.  First I started by naming the drafts, as some of my drafts have silly names like ‘Interesting Motif’.  I went with a space theme; all the drafts are named after Nebulae.  I then created WIF, which is a universal weaving file that can be used with most weaving programs.  

The next part was to create a PDF with the draft, project guide and further breakdowns of the threading, tie up, and treadling just in case the person buying the draft doesn’t have a weaving program. 

The first draft is an original Crackle Weave pattern that is on 6 harnesses.  This draft is called Helix Nebula Crackle Weave.  Etsy listing for Helix Nebula Crackle Scarf Weaving Pattern.  

The second draft is an original Echo Weave pattern that is on 8 harnesses.  This draft is called Cat’s Paw Nebula Echo Weave.  Etsy listing for Cat's Paw Nebula Echo Scarf Weaving Pattern.

The third draft is an original Crackle pattern that is on 12 harnesses.  This draft is called Orion Nebula Crackle Weave.  Etsy listing for Orion Nebula Crackle Shawl Weaving Pattern.

The fourth draft is an original Crackle pattern that is on 12 harnesses.  This draft is called Rosette Nebula Crackle Weave.  Etsy listing for Rosette Nebula Crackle Shawl Weaving Pattern.

I will be adding more drafts in the coming weeks so please check out WovenBeauty on Etsy.  Next week the drafts are going to be the Piano Scarf and the Music Note Scarf.  I’ll also be adding a page to the blog (beside the Tips and Tutorials Tab) that will have links to the drafts that I have available for sale.   We will be posting more regularly again, I have some tea towels to share with you!


Final Garden Photo is Climbing Lilies (Gloriosa rothschildiana).  We got these as tubers from the Horticultural Society and we didn't know what to expect.  We planted them in early spring, dug them up in June to see if they were alive, they finally started to grow in July and by August we had these lovely flowers.  They were well worth the wait!