Monday, June 10, 2013

A little weaving

I finally made some time to warp my rigid heddle loom.

And I'm off and weaving!
Project notes:
This will be a scarf, approximately 60 inches long by 16 inches wide
Warp is a rayon from Newtons, purchased at Stitches West 2012.
Weft is Valley Yarns Brilloso, purchased at Stitches West, long, long ago: 64% Rayon/21% Cotton, 15% acrylic
Sett = 10
I initially wanted to make the scarf entirely out of the Brilloso, a yarn I'd bought to originally knit a sleeveless top. But a year or so ago when I went browsing my stash for something to use for weaving, I thought the yarn might be better for weaving than for a top, especially since it doesn't have any elasticity. In my weaving naivety, I thought it would work for both warp and weft. But after warping about 6 inches of 113 inch long warp, the yarn began to have slubs in it at regular intervals and they were snagging on in the heddle. The first part of the yarn didn't have slubs, so I was surprised, and frustrated. Clearly this yarn was not going to work as a warp. But maybe the first part would. So I left the 6 inches of warp on the loom and wove anyway. Besides the slubs, I also discovered another reason why the yarn was unsuitable for use as a warp. It's a three ply yarn: 2 of a silky yarn and one of a black thread. Oh that black thread. It sometimes got snagged on the heddle and broke and caused me all kinds of grief. But I persevered and made this scarf...or belt...or whatever it is. I like the tweediness of it and the subtle striping, but the hand is rather stiff and it's even a little scratchy. I haven't completely finished it - it either needs the fringe finished or else the edges finished, depending on what I want to do with it.

Weaving project
So I thought maybe the Brilloso would work better with a different yarn as the warp, which is how I arrived at the setup today. Black rayon in the warp and Brilloso in the weft. I'm weaving it a little looser too - the black rayon should have a sett of 12, but I'm using a sett of 10. So far it's looking pretty good. I have plenty of Brilloso so it's great for experimenting and learning and maybe I'll get a scarf out of it. 

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