Monday, December 3, 2007

8 Crackle Blocks on 4 Shafts: First Sample

Here is a photo of the first sample on the loom.

The weaving is very simple. I simple treadled on opposites. This means that when I treadled such that I raised shafts 1 and 2 (treadle 3), that treadle was followed by a treadle which raised shafts 3 and 4 (treadle 8). On the first treadle I threw brown weft; on the second I threw weft. I repeated this for a total of 6 times (2 shafts treadled constituting 1 time). Then I moved on to the next set of opposite treadles (4 amd 7) and repeated throwing the wefts for a total of 6 times. I continued with treadles 5 and 6, then 6 and 5, then 7 and 4, and finally 8 and 1.

One thing visible is a slight M's and O's effect. Zielinski warned about this in overshot style treadling. If you continually repeat the pattern treadle with the opposite shed for the binder, you will get this kind of effect. Apparently it happens even when the opposite shed is not used for a binder but for a second pattern shot. Perhaps the effect would be more apparent with a finer binder thread? One thing I will look for is whether or not this effect washes out in the washing and pressing.

Because I am using only 4 shafts, treadling on opposites can produce only three blocks. At first glance it might look like 6 blocks are being produced. The effect, however, is an illusion. The illusion is created by the handling of color.

The second set of three blocks is really nothing but a repetition of the first three blocks, only in reverse order. The order is reversed because beginning with the 4th treadling sequence and continuing with the 5th and 6th treadling sequence, the treadling is the same, only in reverse. Since I continued to throw the brown weft first and the red weft second, the colors are reversed.

Looking on the third group of shots and the fourth group of shots shows this clearly. The red weft floats in the third group (treadles 5 and 6) and replaced by brown weft floats in the fourth group (treadles 6 and 5).

The drawdown shows something interesting going on between the third and fourth set of blocks.

There is an awkward repetition of two treadles in a row. The red arrow points to the problem. This happens because treadles 5 and 6 are the last set of treadles of the first group, while 6 and 5 are the first set of treadles for the next group. I have moved from having the first treadle of each group being first 3, then 5, then 5. When I get to 6 (and 7 and 8), the opposite treadles turn out to be the first treadles of the first three groups.

When I saw this on the draft, I realized I needed to figure something out to get away from that awkwardness. But then I looked at the fabric.

The fabric is fine. The doubled treadle is virtually invisible. Drawdowns are not the last word.

1 comment:

Leigh said...

I think the fabric is fine too. In fact, I really like that subtle wavy m's & o's look. But then, likes and dislikes are rather subjective things, aren't they?