Sunday, December 19, 2010

Speed Weaving

Yesterday I wove more and faster than ever before. I had a deadline: Sunday at 2 pm, when someone was coming over to buy my second loom. (Reminds me of my favorite line from Lord of the Rings, about having second breakfast.)

The warp is a 16/2 linen warp, threaded in stripes of natural and bleached linen. The pattern is Swiss Twill from Davison's Handweaver's Pattern Book. Version 1 was sett at 24 epi, which produces a very firm piece of cloth. I'm new to linen, so I believe it will soften up with use. Still, it seemed awfully dense. Here's a closeup of the selvedge:
Right-hand side, which is my less even selvedge. I followed advice from the teacher at a linen workshop that my guild hosted in November to sett the edges double through the heddle and the reed. I wasn't happy with the result, and in Version 2, went back to my usual method of threading the edges in a straight draw twill (1-2-3-4) and using a doubled floating selvedge (it comes through the reed but not the heddles).

Version 2, which was what I wove off yesterday into three napkins and a piece for a swatch (wish I could discipline myself to keep better weaving records - I end up with snippets of cloth in a drawer by the sewing machine) is sett at 18 epi, or ends per inch. The cloth looks closer to napkin weight. But I'll have a better idea once I wet finish it, aka throw it in the washing machine. It's a bit harsh for linen, but these are napkins, and I want them to stand  up to normal wear and tear. No handwashing of napkins in this house.
There's now a large, empty space with some fluff and lint on the floor, where the loom was. It's strange to see the space empty; I was accustomed to seeing it filled with a loom.

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