I have been so focused on getting my stash woven down I have been letting my other deadlines slide. Of course I've always worked 'best' under the pressure of deadlines, so...
But April is nearly over, next week it will be May! And I have things I need to take care of before June. Weaving, being labour intensive, means that I have to get cracking and deal with getting ready for the Olds College class in mid-June. Part of that is sampling the new-to-me yarn I got earlier this month while I was at Sweet Georgia Yarns.
One of the challenges with weaving is finding 'good' yarn. Even better if that yarn comes in an array of colours.
I don't weave much with wool these days, but level one of the master weaving course means weaving with wool and fulling it. One of the class assignments is to create a value gamp, so you need at least 6 steps in the value of a hue and it has to be wool.
Since a percentage of the level one students are usually a bit less experienced, some of whom may have never woven with wool, I try to find 'friendly' yarn. Many of the finer wool yarns that come in value gamp steps are extremely elastic/stretchy. This makes them more challenging to weave with if you have never encountered a yarn with a lot of elasticity in it.
I've been using Harrisville yarns in part because it is meant to be fulled, in part because it doesn't have a lot of elasticity. But it doesn't have a great value scale so I've fudged by reaching into the next hue for the darker values.
Array (from GIST) is now being carried by Sweet Georgia, and the grey scale comes in a five step value package, plus you can buy natural white as an individual cone. So I bought that for the class. However, I also need to sample it so I did a two birds one stone thing and bought a set of their lime green value scale (plus white) which gives a five step value scale. On this warp I will weave my samples in preparation for the Olds class and the grey scale, but I bought enough I can make a scarf for a friend who absolutely *adores* lime green.
Yesterday was a pretty good day and after weaving two towels and taking a short break I wound the lime green warp. I had re-designed this warp at least 6 times. Array is not a cheap yarn and I wanted the scarf to turn out well but I don't have a lot of 'extra' yarn. So I took my time combining the value scale concept and the stripe sequence in a way that was pleasing to me (I am not actually a fan of lime green, but I think this is going to look nice!) and stayed within the confines of the yarn I had available.
The changes in the value from one shade to the next are slight, so I will be needing to keep track of each step as I weave the gamp. This should make a really nice gradient.
The yarn is strong. It's 'worsted', smooth, compact, and will full. So it will be interesting to see how it is after a very light fulling and a good hard press. It won't be merino soft, but it will be a lot friendlier to weave with than a sproingy (technical term) merino yarn.
And yes, it's a bit spendy, but worth it imho to have a less stressful weaving experience, plus the very lovely gradient of colours to work with.