Monday, June 27, 2016

Spectacular FAIL!

In the words of Vincent van Gogh --- "I long so much to make beautiful things. But beautiful things require effort—and disappointment and perseverance."

Spectacular FAIL!

Sometimes despite the best of efforts a project ends in disappointment. Such is the case with my most recent warp. Whatever possessed me to think that this:

For a scarf sett at 10epi.

-- would work okay for warp? I think I was taken in by the pretty, slow colour transition and ignored the fact that a warp must be strong and resist abrasion. I thought with a 70% acrylic, 30% wool composition it couldn't help but be strong. Wrong! It's a SINGLE, which, if I had thought about it, I would have known, weakens the yarn considerably. Upon closer inspection I realize it's also fuzzy so passing through the heddles, and then being worn down by the reed with each beat, it became weaker and weaker until finally the outermost warp threads started to break.

Yup, this one is becoming a beautiful wadding for the garbage can.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

After a Bath and a Tumble

After "wet setting" the handwoven fabric.

The fabric I finished weaving a few days ago has had its fringes twisted and has taken a trip through the washer and dryer. The mercerized cotton didn't just handle it well, the fabric actually improved! It now is beautifully soft, has a lovely fluid drape, and a silk-like luster. The photograph really does not do it justice. Indoor lighting on a dull, cloudy day robbed it of its true vibrancy and sheen.

 Now I'm pouring through my resources trying to come up with the perfect pattern to show the fabric off at its best. I'm thinking I might combine elements of two different patterns to create the effect I'm after.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Fresh From the Loom

A picture heavy post of the 6 metre Saori weaving fresh from the loom.

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving
Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

I'm very pleased with the way it turned out.

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

I haven't yet decided exactly what it will become.

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

Some sort of clothing I think.

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

Or perhaps accent pieces on several different articles of clothing and accessories?

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving
Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

This was woven primarily in fine mercerized cotton.

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

The travelling inlay was done with variegated "dish cloth cotton".

Wovenflame's Saori Weaving
Wovenflame's Saori Weaving
Wovenflame's Saori Weaving

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Weaving Daily

I'm making an effort to weave at least a little every day.

June 13, 2016

June 14, 2016

Wednesday morning:
Really pleased with this bit.

and some more on Wednesday afternoon:

June 15, 2016

If my back wasn't complaining I'd be in there weaving right now. I'm having a lot of fun with this one.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Three Colour Clasped Weft

After weaving the first few inches on this black mercerized cotton warp I discovered a tutorial on a three colour interlock technique (about 1/2 way down the Ravelry post). After some initial confusion and the need to pay close attention to the steps in the tutorial I've "caught on" and now find it not only easy, but fun!

Playing with 3 colour clasped weft.

I've decided to stick with the technique for the remainder of the 6m warp.

June 10, 2016

Kona felt the weaving was getting more attention than she was, and that just wouldn't do!

Demanding equal attention.

June 10, 2016

The entire length of cloth is being woven in mercerized cotton. The warp is 5/2, and the weft is 10/2, and 8/2 in bright colours accented with the same 5/2 black that the warp is done in.

June 12, 2016

I'm thinking it will eventually become some sort of clothing. We'll see what it says once it is complete.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Staying With Cotton

I've decided to stick with lightweight mercerized cottons for this one. Of course who knows what I might be doing by the end of the 6m warp? That's the fun of Saori. No rules, no set in stone expectations, just a lot of relaxing weaving.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Revolving Birdies

Peter and Paul, the little guardians that prevent my warp from spreading, warned me this morning of a problem.

Revolving Birdies warned me.

As I was beaming the warp I noticed that the little parrots were revolving around and around on their "perch". Wondering what was causing their unusual antics I investigated a little further and found that my back beam was so loose it was rotating. The beaming was put on hold while I rounded up a screw driver and gave the whole loom a tightening before proceeding. 

Monday, June 06, 2016

Back With Black

I've been rather uninspired for months. With many varied hobbies it was surprising that not one of them appealed to me throughout the winter. The last week or so I have gradually been feeling the reawakening of my Creative Muse and today felt inspired to wind a 6m long warp of 5/2 mercerized cotton.

6m black 5/2 mercerized cotton warp

I have a vague plan of it becoming some sort of Saori woven clothing.

Saturday, June 04, 2016

Customize Your Knitting

I was sent a free copy of a newly published book, "Customize Your Knitting", by Margaret Hubert.

I get these occasionally from publishers that are hoping I will write a review. There is no obligation on my part to write a favorable review, but it is my nature to go by the old adage, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." Sometimes I don't say anything at all and that's that. The book in question goes off to The Bookman rather than collect dust on my shelf. This isn't one of those books.

I can see value for the beginning to intermediate knitter in "Customize Your Knitting", especially a knitter that does not have a lot of experience in knitting garments to fit or incorporating shaping into lace and texture patterns. The author goes into good detail on those points.

If you are wanting to take an existing pattern and change out details like sleeve and body length, the style of trim, the type of closure, or the neckline shape, this publication does give guidance in that area. There are also four "classic rectangle" patterns fully developed in sizes small to X-large (generally with a finished chest measurement of 34 - 46") with instruction on how to change the shape to suit your individual body. When you add in the included advice for variation in style details you get the 16 styles shown below.

One negative that I feel must be mentioned; there is not nearly enough said about the impact of various stitch patterns on gauge. When a knitter starts to choose different trims, like replacing a ribbed band with one done in seed stitch, the gauge changes and the stitch count should be adjusted accordingly. There is no mention of this aspect of customizing at all and I saw at least one case where, even in the example sweater, a change in stitch pattern caused unsightly rippling in the edging. 

Conclusion? A worthwhile book if you want to advance your knitting past following a pattern to the letter but are perhaps not ready to branch out to design your own from scratch.