Flax field

Flax field

Thursday, August 2, 2012

My Hand-spun Yardage

I have not been doing what I want to do.  I am not even sure where the time has gone and what I have been doing.  I did not get any more of the Europe pictures done, because I have been working through "lightroom" to be able to do my pictures better...maybe.

I did finally get a warp on and do some thinking and weaving.  I had spun some pencil roving that was very bright colored.  I thought I could use it as a surface interest yarn, with a ground fabric woven at the same time.  I had done this with Summer & Winter threading in my class and I was sure that this would work for the jacket.

Here's the hand-spun, the Zephyr (silk/wool) for the ground cloth and the book I read about the structure.  These old Shuttlecraft bulletins are great sources for weaving information.  There are no great color pictures, just "meaty" information.  

Most of the drafts used both yarns in warp and weft, and I don't think this singles will stand up to that.  The last section has patterns with the novelty yarn just in the weft.  I threaded a one block S&W and wove it up expecting to test the sett of the ground warp.

I tried both of the variations, the singles method is on the top and the pairs is on the bottom.  There were so many disappointments with this sample.  The first is just the look, I hate the stripey look...but that should disappear when I weave the 40" width (this is only 6" wide).  The structure used too much of the hand-spun, I don't think I have enough to do a jacket (maybe the front and back, but not the sleeves).  The Zephyr (which is not an inexpensive yarn) does not show at all.  That is not good use of my money.  The fabric had the hand I wanted, and it would hold a structured jacket nicely.  I wanted a collarless jacket, like a "Channel" jacket but with a "V" neck.  I had even thought of making a nice braid to bind the edges with.  I had seen a jacket like that in a catalog and was excited to make me one.  But too many things did not work in this sample.

I gave up on that threading and went back to the book.  The threading under this one did not have an illustration next to it, but referred to the front of the book.  I liked the look and re-threaded the loom.  I used a straight 6 shaft threading and changed the tie-up.  It was threaded odd; 1,2,3,4,3,4.  I can thread faster on a straight draw.  The new threading gave a great piece.

The new sample still has the stripey problem, but I looked past that and found a softer fabric that could be used for a less structured jacket and a secondary fabric that could be used for the skirt.

New Structure
Now the novelty yarn is opened up.  There are 2 shots of ground between the pairs of pattern and 5 shots between the each pair, this way the yarn will go further.  I like the openness of the pattern, and now the expensive Zephyr shows off it's wonderful sheen.  I like the color of the ground, I think it looks good with the hand-spun, and now it is tied down every 6th end instead of every 4th so it "blooms" more.

I even like the structure without the hand-spun.

Without the Hand-spun, the fabric has a nice texture
I think I could use this fabric for a skirt.  After a couple of days of messing with yarn, I have a fabric that I am ready to weave.

Well, almost...  I figured I need a second cone of Zephyr to make both jacket and skirt fabric.  I called my order in and the color is back-ordered.  I guess this one will go in the queue for later.

I have a shawl that I need to get a design for, 8 shaft huck lace.  I guess I'll move on to that for now.  I have the yarn and a request from the spinner...yes it is time for it.  What could go wrong???


  1. Hi Deanna, I came across your blog, linking from Thrums. Looking through your pics I recognized UT scenery so thought I would boldly ask: Are you near Cedar City or know a weaver there who may be willing to teach weaving? I have a friend who just moved there and is interested in learning this skill. Please e-mail me if you have the time... lacie.jensen@yahoo.com Thank you so much.