Thursday, September 27, 2012
My next step, after weaving the header, will be to sample different weft colors. I added about a foot to the length of the warp for this purpose, so I can play and see which color combinations I like best. I picked out three weft yarns at the beginning of the project (one for each ruana/shawl), and have three other ones to try just because I have them on hand. The other benefit of sampling for the first foot of the weaving? By the time I'm done, the edges of the weaving will have drawn in to their working size, so I'll have a consistent width in the finished ruanas.
Here's hoping it all works like I have envisioned!
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
I'm still working on getting my loom warped up for the next set of ruanas. I've dyed the yarn, sleyed it through the reed, and today I'm in the process of threading the heddles. To do this part, I have to take the back beam off and sit down right inside the loom. That puts things at a really convenient angle to work with. And I even have a head rest of sorts.
Here's my view from inside the loom. Each individual piece of yarn gets threaded through the eye of one of those metal heddles. That makes it so I can raise and lower various threads when I get to the actual weaving portion of the project.
This part of the process though? It is kind of tedious. And I can only work for about a half of an hour before my legs fall asleep. So it is kind of slow going today, as I keep getting up and then getting distracted by this bright shiny thing called the internet...
Oh yeah. Internet. Like what I'm doing right now. Off the computer and back to work!!
Sunday, September 23, 2012
It was a pretty laid back day today. But I did manage to get the freshly colored warp chains transferred over to the loom, and put them back in the same order that they were in on the dyeing table. I'm happy to say that writing numbers with a sharpie on scraps of plastic bag worked well. I tied the numbered bits of plastic on the ends of the warp chains before dyeing them. They came through the dyeing process without the numbers washing away. Yay! Anyway, now to warp the loom with the pretty pretty yarn.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
How to Paint a Warp
-cotton warp yarn
-Dharma fiber reactive Procion dyes in various colors
-Soda ash fixative
Tools (Note: do NOT use any of these items for cooking ever again!)
-bin for mixing chemical water
-smaller bins for the dyes
Chemical water = 3/4 c urea + 1 qt water
Dye = 1 c chemical water + 1 tsp soda ash fixer + dye to taste (about 2 tsp)
First, measure out your warp. I'm going to assume you already know how to do this part. In this case, I made warp chains that will be 3" wide.
Instead of tying up your warp with the typical choke ties, use a looser figure 8 tie. This will keep things pretty much in order, but the dye will be able to get under the tie to the yarn. The first time I tried this I tied things too tightly, and ended up with white stripes. It was a cool effect, but not what I wanted this time around. (It would be fun to experiment with, though!)
Thursday, September 13, 2012
I also went through my old magazine stash, and gave away a bunch of old 'Spin-off' magazines. I hadn't looked at them in years. Their new owners are inspired and delighted, and there are now new projects in the making. And again, if I look at my shelves I can't even tell that they're gone. I also gave away a raw fleece from the stash in the shed. I've processed wool from start to finish, and find that when I spin I prefer to work from already cleaned and carded roving. And I have plenty of that! The garbage bag full of raw wool was snapped up by its new owner before I had even made it into the door of the event. Somebody is very happy, and I have more room. A win all around.
I still have more de-stashing and de-cluttering to do. I'd like to pare down my craft supplies to things that I'll actually use within the next few years. It makes it so much easier to actually put my hands on something that will inspire me if I don't have to weed through items that are just filler. There is a fine line between making sure you have what you need for when that midnight inspiration hits, and being able to find what you need when that midnight inspiration hits. I've spent years gathering a most impressive stash. Now I think I need to make it a more streamlined, working stash.
And now, just because it was pretty and I want to share, last night's sunset.