Flax field

Flax field

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

End of the Year Projects

As the year comes to a close, I am finishing up some things and wishing I was having better luck with some of them.  

I joined a SAL/KAL (I showed you the roving here Nov 24), it has been fun and disappointing.  I really loved spinning the yarn.  I pre-drafted and spliced the roving to give short color changes at the first of the project where the knitting rows were short and long color changes where the rows were longer.  This worked, but as I was knitting, I wished I had spent more time getting a more consistent yarn.  
Nice striping and no pooling of color.
Actually after knitting, the variations are not that bad, just while you are knitting it is so close and you notice all the little loose or tight spots.
The lace pattern was ok, but I wondered about binding off with the large needle,  I tend to knit so loosely anyway.  Sure enough the edge ruffled and looked funny.

Even after blocking, the edge was still loose, but it looks much better.

You know how it is, sometimes the project is better than you imagined, sometimes it is just finished!

And there there is the unfinished.  I have a loom sitting in my living room that is waiting for me to sand, oil and get it working.  It has been that way for over a year...so what do you do with it???
Yes, you decorate it!
On the weaving front, there have been some little problems with the warps I have been working on.  I have two tea towel warps and both of them have been giving me grief.  The first is on a loom at the PCH studio.  I designed the plaid to use some yarns...more white, tiny amount of red.  After I designed the plaid, I wound it on the warp board...half way through I realized that I was only adding one red stripe in the block instead of two...actually half had one stripe and half had two (but not evenly).  So when the warp was in the raddle, I added warps to make all the blocks have two red stripes.  Problem number one corrected. 
After I had threaded and sleyed, I noticed 2 black threads hanging down and, sure enough, there was a black block with 11 threads instead of 13...so...rethread and resley.  (Fortunately, it was next to the last black stripe, so not so bad.)
Re-threading the warp
I wove a small start of the piece before I had to go home, and it looks like the twill is good.  I threaded a basket weave at the selvedges...not sure how I like that, we will see.

The other towel warp is on the Baby Wolf at home, I can work on this one this week while I'm home for the holiday.  I'm using #10 linen singles and although it worked fine for a narrow warp I wove earlier, this wider warp is having trouble shredding and breaking at the selvedge.  It started when I wound the warp twice as long and folded it to warp it on.  When I do this method, I end up with crosses on each end and so I pull the warp through lease sticks as I wind back to front.  With this singles, I think dry spun, yarn...I developed fuzz balls at the cross.

So I had to watch the cross carefully and clean out the fuzz balls when they developed.  

I have been thinking a lot about huck lace, so I designed a towel where I could put huck in the stripe, or alternate it in the squares.  This way I will have several related but different designs for the towels.  

I started weaving with a single color weft for the first towel.  With singles linen, I often wet the weft so that it makes a better selvedge, and after testing, this yarn needs to be wet for a better edge.  The problem is the the edge is fraying badly.  Maybe I should plan on a plyed yarn for the edges when I use a singles linen.  I will also try wetting the warp as I weave to strengthen the edge threads.

For this first towel, I am weaving the huck in the body, but not in the gold stripes.

Do you notice the reed stripes.  I have threaded this yarn 2 per dent in a 10 dent reed.  I hope the spacing is less noticeable after washing.  Maybe I should have done 1 per dent in a 20 dent reed.  

After I had woven some and was winding the warp on, I noticed one side go loose...I was afraid that I had done something wrong in the winding...bad tension or something....But it was the tie-on rod getting stuck, I was lucky this time.  We'll see how the tension at the end of the warp is with plain weave in some areas and huck in others...!!!

Tie-on rod getting struck on the side piece.
Speaking of loom things, do you tie the brake pedal on your Baby Wolf higher or lower than the treadles.
I tie mine lower.
After these two warp, I think...all I want for Christmas is a warp that goes on easily, no counting errors, weaves like a dream and gives me a WOW finished product.   Not too much to ask for, is it!!??

No comments:

Post a Comment