Saturday, July 4, 2009


Rayon chenille is notoriously hard to photograph, and especially so when there is little contrast in value of the colours. This photo shows the hem area and the beginning of afghan number 3. The pattern weft is a variegated lavender/grey.

I'm really just playing with this warp - I have no idea if the rayon chenille will work in this weave structure - no, I didn't do a sample first!

So I'm hoping that the pattern will resolve better after wet finishing and that the chenille won't worm. But I won't know until the cloth hits the washer and dryer.

Yes, I could have set up a small loom and done a small sample first. In truth, I ought to have done. But I had a box full of the blue/black tweedy chenille that isn't suitable for scarves so I just jumped into the deep end of the pool. Whether this project sinks or swims is yet to be determined.

But sometimes it's good to just go for the gusto and see what happens. Sometimes it's a wonderful surprise. Sometimes the surprise is not so wonderful.

The thing is, I was willing to sacrifice this yarn in the effort to find out. Even if I wind up with a mess, the yarn/cloth won't be wasted as it will get donated to the local Salvation Army for their textile recycling program.

I've mentioned this before but it's worth mentioning again. Instead of taking the clothing that isn't worth selling in their thrift shop to the landfill and paying the fees to dump the rags there, the SA collects textiles from their own shop and other thrift shops in the area, sells the textiles to Asia to be re-made into new textiles and in the end have wound up earning a tidy income for themselves and the other charitable shops in town.

For someone like me who creates an enormous amount of 'waste' - way too much to use in other applications - this recycling program just makes wonderful sense. I've given pounds and pounds of thrums to the local schools, offered them to local weavers, and now give the bags of thrums to a surface designer who sifts through them for what she wants to use and then sends them on to the SA along with her scraps.

I think it would be a great idea for guilds to see if their local Salvation Army has such a recyling program, collect the 'waste' from guild members and pass them along.

"Shoot for the moon. If you miss you'll still land among the stars"


Sharon Schulze said...

This might not be an option if the yarn worms badly or if the items aren't usable, but if they are usable but just a little, well, not great, there are places like shelters, fire houses, hospice organizations, and even animal shelters that deal with people and other creatures that have undergone trauma or misfortune. They often love to have handmade items (quilts, handwoven blankets, etc.) to give to people who arrive after trouble has struck.

I've given some of the worst of my mistakes to the animal shelter (the animals really don't mind a few worms) and some of the not-so-bad mistakes to other organizations. There's even a group that makes "ugly blankets" for homeless people. If they are ugly then others are less likely to steal so the homeless people can stay warm.

Laura said...

Good idea about the SPCA - I give a lot of my seconds to the SA or other thrift shops in the area. :)

Hadn't thought about the SPCA, though.



Delighted Hands said...

Thanks for the encouragement to just enjoy it for the sake of weaving-not necessarily to have perfection when done! As a newbie, it is good to hear this!