Monday, July 26, 2010

Black and White

Can you believe that it has been 5 months since this warp has been sitting on my loom? Yep, since February! This year is flying by and I honestly am not sure where the time has gone.
This is a colour and weave (yes Kaz, it is black and white - they are colours!?) practice warp (and it has become a full scarf sample) and I had actually forgotten how long the warp was when I decided to stop weaving. I should have checked the blog post! If I did, I would not have gone into a panic and thought that I had not allowed enough for some other bits of sampling I really wanted to do! 
The woven length prior to finishing was approx 150cm. I was happy with that, but I had forgotten to allow for the shrinkage after wet finishing. It shortened to 140cm...... Well, it is still long enough to wear but not enough to loop around twice nor to double up and thread through.

It was great having this project on KaTe (the 8 shaft coutermarche floor loom). It gave me a chance to get to know the loom, to try out something that demanded a balance weave and to admire the overhead beater that almost does the work on its own. The beautiful solid piece of timber that carries its own momentum in its weight makes the beating a breeze.
The foot treadles also made this 50-pick repeat so easy compared to the table loom, and so much faster!

I love my fringe twister gadget from Leclerc. I would not have been able to bear doing all those twists without it. It helps with consistency and speed.  

Ruffling with the knitting machine

Yesterday I helped out Christine at the MAKV stand at the Craft and Quilt show, with some demostration of handmanipulation techniques.
Very simple one, just lifting some stitches from a few rows below to the current row and knitted them together.
I used a 'Brother' machine. A very simple machine that only did stocking stitch and any variations are by tension change or hand-manipulation.
The effect reminded me of the curly seaweed that you get at Japanese restaurants! well, especially in this colour.
This is made of 2 ply Bendigo Woollen Mill 'classic' wool and I dyed this colour with Barb. We used acid milling dye and the microwave.
It also satisfied my search for various methods of creating ruffle effect with machine knitting. More on this obsession in another post.