Weaving day

I spent most of the day at the loom weaving a project that it taking way longer than I expected. I planned to weave a ruana for the show coming up and I based the measurements on the ruana that my daughter wove way back when she was 11 years old.

When I took the measurements of this piece I assumed that we had warped this using double weave–to come up with a double width fabric in the back and two separate layers for the fronts. That was assumption #1 that was wrong. I planned colors of stripes to coincide with two twill patterns. As I was winding the bouts of warp I put them in the raddle for my AVL 8-shaft loom. It occurred to me part way through that I needed 16 shafts to weave the 2 layers that I planned. OK, no problem. Since I hadn’t yet wound the warp onto the beam I could move the warp to the 16-shaft AVL.   This was a tedious project to thread. With the help of the computer (and a lot of trial and error) I figured out how to thread this and then have the twill lines reverse on the bottom layer.

I also used the computer to figure out how avoid 3-thread floats between the transitions of the two patterns. This is one layer (shafts 1-8). I did another draft for the 2nd layer (shafts 9-16) and then interspersed the tie-up to create double width and again for two layers.

Here is the fabric on the loom. I am using the Zephyr 50% wool/50% silk yarn that I carry in my shop. The big mistake I made was planning this at double weave instead of just weaving one really long strip and sewing them up the back. My assumption about the original ruana was wrong–we did it just that way, not double weave. I’d have been finished a long time ago if I had woven one long strip. The double width isn’t so bad except that the yarn is so dense that I had to pay close attention to make sure that threads weren’t catching. Here is the system I rigged up for that.

A glance in the mirror each time I change sheds shows if it is clear or not.

The harder part is now that I’m weaving the two separate layers. Two shuttles is much slower than just half the speed of using one shuttle. I think I have another couple of hours tomorrow and then this warp will be finished and I can move on to other projects to finish in the next two weeks.

Here is a weaving project that is very different from the ruana. In a previous post I showed this pile of mohair and yarn scraps that was working on in Oregon:

This is what it turned into. Thanks to the ever willing Shelby for modeling. (Without a model it would probably not look much different than how the fiber looks piled on the table.)

A few days ago I wove another.

This will be in the Artful Fiber show at the Artery to accompany this painting:

There is something about this painting that makes me think of a fluffy boa.


2 thoughts on “Weaving day

  1. Double Wows … you are absolutely amazing. The ruana problem was over my head … I probably would have given up and called it a day.

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