Sunday, April 18, 2010

Endings and Beginnings

In many ways I think that this combination is my favourite for this warp.

Once I ran out of the 24 nm linen, I switched to a fine cotton slub that I've used for towels before.

It's a finer slub than I've seen from other suppliers and makes a nice quality of cloth suitable for towels. The slight slub gives a good texture and they are fairly thirsty.

The yarn comes in a small range of colours but this time I only ordered in natural and ivory which should also add a nice bit of texture to the placemats on the Fanny loom. Ivory was used here because I'd used ivory as the neutral in this warp.

And the warp is now done, done, and I've been thinking about how I'm feeling and what I'm realistically going to be able to do beginning tomorrow.

Beginning by beaming a warp requiring two beams, one of which is only a half yard (which means 80 turns for that part of the warp, even though it is only 10 inches wide) seems like that would just be asking way too much of myself.

So I'm thinking I need to do something less challenging - say another towel warp using up some of that 2/8 cotton set aside for colour gamp kits and using either the cotton slub or a really nice linen/rayon boucle' for weft. It would also be a small enough warp that I could show Mizz B how to beam sectionally and not be too concerned if she takes a little while on the learning curve. It would only be 10 yards after all. :) So we'll see what she says if she comes tomorrow.

Over the years I've taken flak for my equipment choices, the last time being when I added air assist to the loom. One person told me that if I were handicapped it might just possibly be acceptable to use such equipment and still call my work 'hand woven'. Why I should need to be handicapped to justify using the equipment I have no idea.

Well, right now I am handicapped and from the looks of things will continue to be so for some time even though it is temporary.

The air assist is allowing me to get back to work and weave much sooner than if I didn't have it. While I am not yet behind schedule in terms of production for fall sales, I would be if I wasn't able to weave for a couple more months.

And so I am extremely grateful that I didn't allow the nay-sayers to determine my choice of equipment. I don't know how long it will take before I can comfortably weave on the Leclerc Fanny - probably much sooner than if I had a jack loom - but I can and will be weaving on the AVL, looking ahead to the fall sales and continuing to use up stash.

Weaving is not just what I do. In many ways it is what I am.

And I am so glad I have been able to get back to the loom once again.

Currently reading Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett


Sandra Rude said...

My word, one forgets how many books Pratchett has published! He must be one of the most prolific authors ever!

DH is beginning to run tests of the equipment he hopes will become a motor-driven double-box fly shuttle. I had a lot of trouble with the down-pull setup that came from AVL, because I was fighting the picker return on *both* sides at once. He decided that if he could make a motor shaft lifter, he could just as well make a motor shuttle thrower, too. So the engineering process begins. Not sure if I consider arthritis a handicap, but I'll be *really* happy with a power assist for the fly shuttle! And I'll call it "hand woven" cloth, too, just to thumb my nose at the Luddites.

wonderous woolerie said...

Laura, I am sure your looms are happy to have you hover and pat them again -
you should receive a medal for staying focused!

Laura said...

Hi Sandra,

Doug was told it was impossible to build an air assist box changer, but he did. I'm sure you'll soon have the equipment you need, too. :D

And yes, I'm sure the looms are happier now that they are seeing something of me. I know *I* am much happier being able to weave again. :DDDDD

Pia, your Viking project for L'Anx aux Meadows (sp?) looks fantastic. Maybe one day I'll get to see it.