Monday, October 30, 2023

The Difference is in the Sett

 I have just put the third of my hand painted silk warps on the loom.  This time I’ve chosen to weave a 30/2 tussah silk warp painted in olive, plum and bronze, very autumnal.

When I am planning a project there are a few things that I need to know up front: the number of warp ends that I have to work with, and how close to sley the reed being the two most important.

When I first started weaving I bought Mary E Black’s The Key to Weaving which I swear contains everything you need to know about weaving within its 698 pages.  At the very end of the book in the appendix lies a sleying table with some common setts.  This is a good, but dated chart of what was commonly used in the 1950’s.

Mary Black’s table contains the grist, the fibre and setts for loose plain weave, firm plain weave and twill.  For example 8/2 cotton is sett at 20 epi for loose plain weave, 24 for firm plain weave and 28 for twill.  Years ago I put all of this information onto an Excel spreadsheet and I have been updating it with new information ever since including yards per pound and the sett for lace if I can find it.  My chart states that 30/2 should be sett at 26 epi for loose plain weave, 32 epi for firm plain weave and 40 epi for twill. I looked at my reeds and chose to sley the cloth at 36 epi, so 3 per dent in a 12 dent reed.

Once I had it sleyed I thought it looked a tad crammed, but I hoped that slimming down the weft would be the answer.  I tried 10/2 tencel in red and 20/2 tencel in black and neither of them were good.  The red tencel just fused into the back ground with the warp and the black tencel was too spidery.

I thought that the warp just looked too tight overall.

I decided to re-sley the warp at 30 epi, so 2 per dent in a 15 dent reed and I’m much happier with the look of the warp although the scarf will be a tad wider than anticipated since I had 256 ends of warp, I now have a 8 1/2 inch wide scarf.

The pattern I’ve chosen for this scarf is a 10 shaft Crackle weave grid and the weft I’ve chosen is 8/2 tencel in gold. Now I’ve just got to buckle down and weave it.

Can you see them?  We got 12 golf ball sized oranges off our wee tree and there is candied orange peel in our future.  


Leigh said...

Ha! I have that same book but have never paid much attention to the appendices. Good to know. There appears to be quite a few useful tables there.

Lynnette said...

There is so much great information in the appendices of Mary Black's book. I also use the Threads Per Dent table a lot. It really makes sleying easier.

Dianne said...

Have enjoyed catching up with your weaving adventures and seeing the lovely results. I have a question. When you trial weft colours in the warp are they left there and that becomes waste or do you take them out before starting weaving or ...? Just curious.
Your garden pictures inspire me. I was quite pleased with my wee patch of spring flowers then cyclone Lola storm flattened them.