Thursday, July 31, 2008


I still have to weave the part that will fold back for the casing, but this is what the piece should look like at the top.

at the finish line

Above the horizontal red band, I have reversed what was going on from the beginning. Instead of the red block areas getting taller, they are now getting shorter but at a more rapid pace than the pace at which they grew. Of course, I do not really know if this will work until I take it off the loom and see the whole thing of a piece. But that won't happen for awhile. I am going to go on to weave two more pieces before I think about removing any from the loom.

The pin, by the way, is holding in place the original warp end that I had to temporarily replace because it had a knot in it.


What I really have to do, however, is to get the earlier piece ready to mail. There is a great deal of resistance in me to doing that. Why? Simply because I have never done this before. And when I have to do something new that is important to me, fear has a tendency to paralyze me. It looks like I am going to have to figure one one very tiny thing I can do to get the process started, one baby step. This is my usual method for overcoming resistance.


By the way, the color in this photo looks pretty true to the real thing. Either I was depressed when I worked with the last image or the light was much brighter today (it was, as a matter of fact.).

Related Posts:

More on Resistance

Art Piece 4: I've Changed My Mind Again

© 2008

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


A bit more weaving accomplished today.

close to the end


The photo is not very sharp despite sharpening efforts in Paint Shop Pro XI.  Most of the photos I took today were a little blurry, despite my using a monopod.  I use a monopod instead of a tripod because it is easier to maneuver around the loom.  I am a bit sleepy today.  Have not gotten quite enough sleep the last few nights and perhaps that is what the photos are telling me!  Tonight I WILL go to bed on time.....


What I also did in Paint Shop Pro was to work with color, lightness, saturation and brightness. I was trying very hard to get the image to look like the fabric.  The images I present are all pretty close, but this time I was trying for a higher degree of accuracy.  And I must say this is the closest I have come.


But back to the weaving.  I am close to the end.  About another inch or inch-and-a-half to weave and then the final weaving of the bit then will be turned back to form a casing.  I really wanted to finish it today because I am so close.  But I know, with my current bit of fatigue, doing that would have been just asking for trouble.  Tomorrow is soon enough.

Related Post: Photographing Textiles

© 2008

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


I joined Complex Weavers sometime around 2003. Soon after that I started reading about their study groups.  As I was interested then in the possibilities of beading on the loom, the first group I tried was Beads and Interlacements.  After a year or so I realized that this was not for me.  Then I borrowed the notebooks from the Fine Threads group.  I got some good information from those notebooks but decided I really didn't want to belong to that group either.  Finally I tried the Crackle Study group.

A couple of weeks ago  I received an email from the Crackle Study group coordinator asking if I would submit a piece for the October Journal based on one of the samples I had submitted in 2006.  I checked to make sure I had all my paperwork as well as the materials from the sample exchange for that year.  I did, so I agreed I would do it.

Now I have started to write the piece.  The strangest thing is that I have virtually no memory of weaving either the samples or the scarf that followed the weaving of the samples.  I "knew" I had done this.  But I didn't even remember what the scarf looked like.  As luck would have it, the scarf was still in my possession.  And here it is.

crackle painted warp scarf view 2

It is an 8-shaft crackle done in 60/2 silk (with 120/2 silk for the tabby weft). I painted the warp yarns and dyed the weft yarns. The treadling is a kind of Summer-and-Winter treadling.

I am very glad I found the scarf.  The samples that I wove for the study group are very small and so only hint at what the whole looks like. Now I feel better about writing this piece.

To learn more about Complex Weavers, go here.

Related Posts:

Crackle Treadled as Summer-and-Winter
Crackle Treadled as Summer-and-Winter Continued
More "Tromp as Writ"

© 2008

Monday, July 28, 2008


First the weaving blogs.

Along the Way -- Dot's Fibre to Fabric
A Universal Tie up for a Countermarch Loom -- Dot's Fibre to Fabric
Carole's Krokbragd Kindred Threads
A Morning on the Dark Side -- Weaverly
Youth Weaving Class -- River City Weaves
A Conversation in Fiber -- Cyber Fiber Scriber
If Having Books Was the Same as Having Knowledge -- Taueret
Success -- Weaving Spirit
Summer and Winter Runner -- Sharing the Fiber Fever
Lake Superior Lap Rug -- Honeysuckle Loom
Short and Long Stories -- Fibres of Being
Waffle Weave Sampler -- Leigh's Fiber Journal

Constance Rose Textile Design has a pair of interesting posts on sketchbooks.
To Sketch or Not
Sketch Books, Part 2

The following post is about Margaret Bergman, weaver and designer of looms
Swedish Serendipity -- The Straight of the Goods


Though Sandra (of Sandra's Loom Blog) weaves some amazingly complex structures, it is her use of color that brings those structures to life.
Second Hummingbird Started
More Hummers

To see a beautiful photo of a Randall Darwall scarf, don't miss this. I have saved the images to my hard drive for further study and inspiration. Be sure to blow up these images to see the details. And if you don't know who Randall Darwall is, go here.
Color Inspiration -- Kindred Threads

An interesting series of posts of Cally's latest project
Colour Reflections
First Attempt
More on Color Choices


Twyla Tharp is a choreography and the author of a notable book I have read called The Creative Habit. I have read it and found it inspiring, and so I recommend reading it, and also taking a look at Robert Genn's take on the book.
Twyla's Habits -- The Painter's Keys

© 2008

Friday, July 25, 2008


So I expect weaving with five pirns at a time to move quickly????

Weaving continues on

Related Posts:

The Perils of Multiple Shuttles
The Joy of Multiple Shuttles
Resting Shuttles
Slow Weaving

© 2008


I learned to sew when I was a small child.  An aunt had drawers of fabric she had never sewn and would never sew.  She let me pick out any fabric I wanted from that stash to make a dress for my doll.  And so I did.  Then we went downtown to the department store to find a pattern.  From her I learned about patterns.  About how to pick them, how to figure out the size, how to cut the fabric from them, and how to read the directions and sew them.  Sew them by hand.  I made an entire wardrobe for my favorite doll that summer.

Shortly after my husband and I were married, we purchased a sewing machine for me.  And I started sewing. I found an article in a magazine about the couturier houses in One thing I learned from it was that the dressmakers in these houses sewed the garments completely by hand (that has changed just a bit these days).  So I found some beautiful dark blue wool crepe, and some coordinating red wool crepe.  I bought a Vogue pattern.  I cut it out.  And I sewed it entirely by hand. It was a beautiful dress and I loved it.  But I did decide that, for me at least, sewing an entire dress by hand was perhaps a bit extreme.

Subsequently I learned more about couture sewing from books and articles.  I use many of these techniques.

  • Hand-picked zippers, for example, which are actually more secure than machine sewn zippers and look a lot nicer.
  • Hand overcast seams, a practice which results in the edges of the seams being as light and flexible as the fabric was meant to be.

Many things I sew I do not use couture techniques on. 

  • Children's clothes, for example, where I used all the industrial shortcuts I could find.
  • Nightgowns and everyday pants for myself.
  • Casual jackets and knit tops

But for my good clothes, I use many couture techniques. These clothes look better and fit better that they would if I didn't.

I listened this weekend to a podcast on couture sewing. I found it on Sew Forth Now. Here is the direct link to the program, called Couture Details. There I learned that the first thing that distinguishes the French couture houses is the fact that the fabric each uses is made exclusively for that particular house and is not available to anyone else.   When I make a garment with my handwoven cloth, that first criterion is definitely met.  Surely my handwoven fabric  deserves as much of my care and attention to painstaking detail as I have the time and ability to bring to it.

And so I ask, why on earth would anyone bring a serger anywhere near such precious fabric?

The question of what kind of serger to buy comes up again and again on weaving lists.   Not whether or not they should use a serger on their handwovens, but which serger should they use.   And I shudder. Sergers for knits, for kids' clothes. For throwaway one-season clothes. For very casual clothes.  These are perfect places to use a serger. But I do not use my handwoven fabric for any of these.  I do use it for clothes that I want to wear for many years, for clothes that are special.  This is not the place for a serger.

© 2008

Thursday, July 24, 2008


If you read my earlier post, Now What Do I Do? you will see that I have changed my mind!

weaving continues

I have decided not to interrupt those vertical red bands either with bands of blue or with reversing color blocks. I have decided to keep those red bands as a feature of the piece.

I plan to repeat the red band at least once more, possibly twice.

So the last group of questions I asked still have relevance (by return I mean returning to the block motif after having woven the swath of red across the warp):

  1. Should that return mirror what I did in the first part?
  2. Should that return be the same length as the first part?
  3. Should that return, instead of mirroring, continue the idea of the first part, that idea being gradual changing in size of the blocks?

My weaving already addresses the first and third question. I am not mirroring what I did in the first part but am continuing to change the size of the blocks gradually. As you can see from the edges, the blocks with the blue at the selvedges are getting shorter while the blocks with the red are getting longer.

As I see it now, this part will be longer than the first part. I'm thinking now half-again-as-long. This second part will be followed by another swath of red. The swath will be the same size as the first one. And the last part will be the shortest of the three block sections, perhaps half the length of the first part.

© 2008

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


I felt a kindred spirit when I read Constance Rose's blog yesterday. She reached my weaving heart when she wrote this:

"...if I plan something out in too much detail, then there isn't a lot of room for serendipity. And I often like to change things as I go. This happens for me with weaving much of the time. I'll have one thing in mind when I'm designing the piece, then other things will come into play while I'm in the process, and I'll end up doing something else."

Go here to read the entire piece.


I know of another weaver whose weaving reflects this: Randall Darwall, whose web site is here. You can see a some of his weaving there. But for a really good photo of one of Darwall's scarves, go to Kindred Threads. Here you will find two photos. These reveal clearly the creative process involved in treadling. Looking at these photos shows how he has combined treadling and color to create an original piece. Here is the direct link to the post with the photos

I'm not wild about the pinks, but that's OK. And seeing those photos has suggested the possibility of my using pinks...........sparingly..........

Related Posts:

Art Piece 2: Weaving Continues
Randall Darwall
Improvising at the Loom

© 2008

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I let the image of the started piece and the ideas about what to do next (go here to read about that) simmer overnight.  By the time I got to the loom today I decided that I wanted a narrow red band followed by the block motif, but reversing the blues and the reds.  So I wove the red band.

Now What 

I liked it.  But I didn't know what to do next.  I was no longer sure about the plan.

But now that I see it on the computer screen I know what I want to happen.  I want those two long vertical bands of red broken up.  Not forever.  Just for a short time.  There are two ways I could accomplish this.

  1. I could now weave a band using different blues, no reds.
  2. I could weave the blocks but reverse the colors.  That would put blues where the reds were and reds where the blues were. As in #1, the vertical red bands would be interrupted.

Here is another possibility.

  1. Weave a narrow band of all blues.
  2. Follow this with perhaps three blocks with the colors reversed from what they were at the beginning.
  3. Then weave a second narrow band of all blues.
  4. Weave a band if reds
  5. Finish by returning to the original theme.

This idea is growing on me a bit.  But there are questions about the return to the original theme.

  1. Should that return mirror what I did in the first part?
  2. Should that return be the same length as the first part?
  3. Should that return, instead of mirroring, continue the idea of the first part, that idea being gradual changing in size of the blocks?

Then there is a question of how long should the middle section be and how many, if any, repeats.

I think I need to sleep on this.

© 2008



My weft calculations are never accurately calculated.  In fact, what I usually do is simply agree with myself that I will need the same amount of weft as warp.  That gives me plenty of extra yarn in case I need it.   That is because there are all the unwoven spaces on the warp, the 36" of loom waste, for example.

I have decided, however, to calculate it for these towels.  If possible, I really don't want a lot of weft yarn lying around unused because I use this cotton so rarely.  So here goes.


As with the warp yarns, these calculations won't be absolutely precise because I do not have the exact width of the towels on the loom.  But I should be able to come close with the approximate width I came up with in the post where I discussed my warp calculations.

PPI (picks per inch) = 36 – need 5,000 yards for weft. In practice, I expect this to be quite inaccurate.  I am not weaving a balanced weave structure where I would want to get the same number of picks per inch as ends per inch.  I will, in reality, get fewer, if only because I am using a yarn for weft that is twice the size of the warp yarn.

36 ppi x 29" = 1,044" of weft yarn to weave 1".  Again, this is an overstatement, as is clear from the preceding paragraph.

Weaving 4 towels = 166"
+ weaving 1 sample (12") = 178"
+ weaving for Crackle Study Group (36") = 214"
214" x 1,044 (amt of weft needed to weave 1" = 223,416" / 36" = 6,206 yards for weft.

My calculation for warp yarn, by the way was 7,210  yards, so I need about 1,000 yards less for the weft.  But again, because I will get fewer than 36 ppi, I will need less yarn than my calculations call for.


But, how many colors will I need and how much of each color will I need? this is always the most difficult for me to calculate because, more often than not, I am not exactly sure just exactly how I am going to use the colors.  I will probably use three colors.  Assuming I would use each color equally, I would then need 2,069 yards of each color.  I probably will not use them equally, so I will probably order more than I need of each color.


If I were selling what I make, I could not get away with such lax calculation.  I would have to know pretty exactly how much yarn I would need in order to work on setting a price.  But I am not selling, so I have the luxury of not only rough-guessing but also over-estimating the amount of yarn I need.

© 2008

Monday, July 21, 2008


Here is the beginning of the next piece.

Art Piece 4 Begun

Though it does look a little better in real life, it does not look all that much better.  I had planned on continuing the weaving as begun, but now that I look at the photo, I begin to see another possibility.  Actually two possibilities.

  • Weave everything for awhile in different reds.  No blues or violets at all.  My original plan was to move gradually to this, slowly adding more red until there was no blue left.  Seeing the piece as it now stands, I think that plan needs to be modified.  What I could do is to insert one or more bands of all red to break up the very dull design.
  • Change the color order so that where the reds predominate, the blues do instead.  Where the blues predominate, the reds do instead. 

And now that I look again, I see yet another possibility.

  • Put a band of red in, then do the reverse.  Perhaps do this more than once.

Oh dear, which shall I try................

© 2008

Friday, July 18, 2008


Warp Yarn: 16/2 unmercerized cotton

Sett: 36 epi

Finished Size of 1 towel: 24" x 35"

Width on loom: 24" + 1" for draw in + 15% (3.6") = 28.6"
Length on loom: 35" + 1"x2  for hems + 1" for take up + 10% (3.5") for shrinkage = 41.5" 

Number of towels:  4 towels (3 for Amy, 1 for me): 41.5" x 4 = 166"
+ 3" x 3 for space between towels = 130.5"
+ amount for sampling at beginning (12") = 175"  
+ amount for weaving a sample for Crackle Study Group (36")) =  211"
+ Loom Waste (36") = 208.5" / 36" = 247"

Total length of warp = 247" / 36" = 6.9 yards. 

Amount of warp yarn needed: 36 epi x 28.6" (width on loom) = 1,030 ends x 7 yards = 7,210  yards


These calculations are not precisely accurate because I may have to accommodate them to the size and number of threading blocks I will be able to get within the 28.6" width. Once I have the exact threading worked out, I will make the appropriate change to these calculations.  The width may end up being a bit more or a bit less that 28.6", depending on how the threading forces me to compensate. 

These figures, however, are accurate enough to order warp yarn. Especially given that I always order more than I think I will need........

© 2008

Thursday, July 17, 2008



I begin the list with the first post of a new weaving blogger. Already she knows just what to do.
Sampling -- Sampling


Now to the other end, a very experienced weaver. This is a series of five posts by Alice Schlein (aka Weaverly) about her latest sample weaving project.
Sectional Warps in Five Colors
Rat's Nest
Ready to Weave
Blanket Under Way
Warp Tap Blanket Competed


Reely Warped -- SpinningLiizzy's Weblog
Knitting Sighted -- Cyber Fiber Scriber
Waffle Weave -- Leigh's Fiber Journal
Summer Weaving Project at St. Mark's -- Weaving Spirit
Samples are my Friends -- Shuttle Pilot
Wide Warp -- Humming Hearts Ranch
Colour in the Rain -- t'katch
Festive Towel Exchange -- Unravelling
Picky -- Unravelling
Bergman Beginners -- The Straight of the Goods
On to the Next Design -- Sandra's Loom Blog
Cones, Knots, and Weaving -- Deep End of the Loom
Color and Weave on the Loom -- Renee Weaves!

Read these two and you will see why I paired them up.
Slightly Loomless -- Curious Weaver
Catching my Breath -- Fibres of Being


Those of us who did not go can just drool......
Convergence -- Part Two (Classes) -- Handwoven by Kristin Kelley


Some interesting ideas on the artist's (and weaver's) journey
Shifting Gears: Trust the Spiral -- Textile Arts Resource Guide


COLOURlovers -- Lines and Colors


Totally off topic but for those of us who read and/or write blogs (or are thinking about starting a blog), this is an interesting essay on the importance of blogging. Certainly the growth of a weaving blogging group has created an important community for me. I value it greatly and am delighted to see it growing.

And When I Die
-- As Time Goes By

© 2008

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Washed and hard pressed. Still work to do.  To prepare it for hanging.


© 2008

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Thanks to Susan's suggestion about using both 16/2 and 18/2 unmercerized cotton for the best of both worlds, I am now thinking in terms of using 16/2 for the warp and 8/2 for the weft.


Recently when I weave crackle, I have been interested in the interplay of warp and weft, so I use the same size yarn for both. With these towels, however, I have decided that I will choose to have the weft patterning dominate, so I will use the heavier yarn for the weft.


I want to have the yarn here when I am ready, so the first thing I need to do is to get a general idea of how much yarn I need to order. So I need to do a generalized calculation for amounts of warp and weft. I say generalized, because I cannot know exactly how many warp ends I will need until I get the threading design perfected. But I can come close enough to give me the ability to order yarns.

More to come............

Related Posts:

Tromp as Writ Varied
Crackle Dish Towels: More on Yarn Choices

© 2008

Monday, July 14, 2008


The initial attempt at hemstitching is awful.  I do have more colorful language, but I will refrain.

bad hemstitcihng

And to punish myself still more, in case no one could really see how awful it it, here is a close up.

bad hemstitching, clioseup

Nothing like preserving one's disasters, though this is easier on my soul than ripping out almost the whole body of our son's Christmas sweater, right down to the ribbing. 

Perhaps I should check out my horoscope before proceeding further?  On either project?

Related Post:  Hemstitching

© 2008


Here are the three pieces I cut off.  They are in the order I wove them, from front to back.

Cut-off pieces

Now back to the loom. 

The next step is to fold those two sticks together so that one is on top of the other.  Using tapestry warp, which is very strong, I tied them to the front apron rod.

Attached to front apron rod

Now I can ratchet up the tension and get to work!

Related Posts:

Cutting Off:  Part I
Cutting Off:  Part II

© 2008

Friday, July 11, 2008


I left off explaining the first steps with throwing the blue wool weft shots for approximately one inch.

First Steps


The next step is to open one shed, insert a stick, then open the opposite shed and insert a second stick.  The sheds are supposed to be the two plain weave sheds.  Having no ability to make plain weave sheds on this warp, I chose sheds as near as opposite to each other as I could.  The sticks I used are the sticks for separating warp ends on the back beam.


After inserting the two sticks, I then wove roughly another inch with the blue weft.

second set of weft shots

Now, between the two sticks and the two sets of woven bits, the warp, along with its tension, is secured.


The next step is to cut off the warp in front of the first inch of blue wefts.  I always worry at this point that I am going to cut in the wrong place.  The result of that would be having to tie the warp ends into half-inch groups,  lash them onto the front beam, and adjust the tension. This is a chore I did at the beginning and do not want to do again.

Here I have made that cut (in the right place!) and the warp with its sticks and blue bits of weaving is hanging from the front of the reed.

The cut is made


Now I need to unroll the woven cloth from the front beam and remove it.

Related Post:

Preparing for Lashing On 
Lashing on to the Front Rod

© 2008


I decided I needed to cut off the three art pieces I had woven.  Why?

  • I wanted to be able to analyze what I had done so far in order to figure out where I wanted  to go with the rest of this warp.
  • I am thinking of submitting the third piece to a weaving show.

Because I want to continue to weave on the remaining warp I would have to retie it on to the front beam.  This is a bit of a bother, so instead I decided to use Peggy Osterkamp's technique of cutting off the cloth as you go.  She describes this technique in Warping Your Loom and Tying on New Warps.  The book is available at a number of places, including Camilla Valley Farms.  Scroll down the page to find its description.


First Steps

  1. First I wove in a few shots of yellow pearl cotton.  I did this to give me something hard to beat against to push down the hemstitching firmly into the woven fabric.
  2. Then I wove in several shots of white rug warp for what will be the fringe.
  3. Finally I wove about one inch of finish wool.  This weaving is supposed to be plain weave, but since plain weave is impossible on this warp, I just continued with the polychrome treadling.  And I wove with wool because of wool's stickiness.

© 2008 

Thursday, July 10, 2008


USE BOTH 16/2 and 8/2

Susan of Thrums got me back to thinking about my decision to use 8/2 unmercerized cotton instead of 16/2.  On my last post, she commented that on her last set of towels she tried 8/2 for the warp but 16/2 for the weft.  This combination, she said, "...gave me the best of both. Absorbent but not overly thick."

I have thought about playing with fine weft on a heavier warp for crackle, but that is not what I want to do with these towels.  Since I want the colors formed by the weft yarns to predominate, I would want 16/2 as the warp and 8/2 as the weft. 


This use of a heavier pattern weft is traditional for crackle.  I have not been doing this in my crackle exploits because I am interested in the interplay of warp and weft. With these towels, however, I am more interested in the weft colors than in the warp.  The warp will simply be the background on which to hang the design. That means i would use the 16/2 for the warp and the 8/2 for the weft.


The configuration raises a question about sett. The sett I would use for 8/2 warp would be 24 epi.  The sett I would use for 16/2 warp would be 36 epi.  Knowing that I will be using 8/2 for the weft, should I still sett eh 16/2 at 36 epi?  Or should I sett it just a bit wider to allow for the extra size of the weft?  Setting the warp a bit wider would allow the weft to pack closer together, but would that make for a less sturdy fabric?  Or a less flexible fabric?

Related Post: 8 Crackle Blocks on 4 Shafts:  Sett

© 2008

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


I have finished the area that will be "on view." That part is a bit longer than the others--14.5".

art piece 3 reaching the end

The purple section you see on top will be the hem for the casing. I am weaving that with blue and violet weft threads alternating.


As I wove the last few inches, I noticed the selvedges, especially the left selvedge, not being quite as nice as they had been. Occasional tiny loops formed.

A while back, I had discovered that if the shed was not totally clear right down to the fell, I would get loops. Go here to read about that. This was not the problem here, so I needed to look elsewhere for a solution.

Normally when I have been weaving this piece, The fell has been only about two to three inches from the front beam and I would move the cloth whenever I had woven one to two inches. Today, however, I did not move the cloth. So I was weaving, towards the end, with the fell at a much greater distance from the front beam than usual.


Words from a weaver I greatly respect that I heard when I first started weaving came into my head: the smaller the sheds, the better the selvedges. I didn't do anything with that because at the time I was weaving on a counterbalance loom with huge sheds. And my current loom, despite its being a jack, also has large sheds.

Looking at the warp with sheds open, I saw that the closer to the beater I look, the wider the shed is. The closer to the front beam, the narrower or the shed. So I started half-way closing the shed before I beat. It worked.

My best guess at this point is that with a narrow shed, when you beat there is less opportunity for the weft at the edges to shift out and so create loops.

Related Posts:

Selvedges Once More
Temples: A Correction,an Addition, and a Warning

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


8/2 unmercerized cotton was my original choice for our daughter's dishtowels. I was happily looking at colors when I saw that 16/2 unmercerized cotton was available in a few places. I do have this penchant for finer yarns.......... So 16/2 unmercerized it was to be.

I began tackling other issues, like the number of towels I wanted to weave, their size, the number of blocks and sizes of the blocks.

Then I got out one of the towels I had woven for myself. Here is a photo of one of them.

towel 2 2005

These were the towels our daughter liked. Would she like dish towels woven in 16/2 instead of this 8/2? And then I asked it: would I like dish towels woven in 16/2?

The towels I wove are just soft enough and just thick enough to be really nice and absorbent for drying dishes, or to lay dishes on to dry. I wanted to weave the 16/2. But the practical towels that would wear like iron, the towels my daughter liked, were woven in 8/2.

So, 8/2 unmercerized cotton it is going to be. Back to the drawing board to work out the figures for that.

Related Post:

More on those Towels

© 2008

Monday, July 7, 2008


A New Experience -- Sandra's Loom Blog
Fire and Sparks -- Sandra's Loom Blog
Flowers and Lace -- Susan
Contemporary Textiles - Voices in Three Strands (photos) -- Weaving a Life
Pointless Rambling - No Pictures -- Woven Thoughts
Ondule and Woven Resist -- Weaverly
Bonnie Innouye Revisited -- Unravelling
Expanded Multiple Tabby Weave Samples -- Leigh's Fiber Journal
Where in the World is Jan? -- Kindred Threads
Warping My Bergman with Mrs. S-G -- The Straight of the Goods
The Pick Up Stick in Dyemaking Cloth -- Curiousweaver
Silly Billy -- T'katch
The silly-billy beams on willy-nilly -- T'katch
Warped and Beamed -- Constance Rose Textile Designs
Ebb Tide Exhibit -- Cyber Fiber Scriber
Sample Blanket Progress Report -- Dot's Fibre to Fabric

To see how Linda pixellated a photo and the colors she pulled out, go to her post here:
HWSDA -- Linda's Fiber Weblog

James Koehler is a tapestry weaver, and a wonderful one at that.  But reading to the end of the post will reveal some jewels of advice to all weavers, not just tapestry weavers.
A Day with James Koehler -- The Weaving Diva

It happens to non-weavers as well.
When Two Bloggers Write an Almost Identical Post -- Momgrind

This is not from a blog but from a twice-weekly email newsletter.  It is about painting;  but it is also about weaving.
The Zen of Art -- The Painters Keys

No, I haven't gone crazy.  The following post may be talking about computer technology but it is also talking about learning, practicing, growing in any profession or skill.. To whet your appetite for more, here is a quote: "....what matters is not experience per se but "effortful study," which entails continually tackling challenges that lie just beyond one's competence."  And just one more tease:  he thinks it is really important for those who are pursuing growth and skill to write a blog.............
The Ultimate Code Kata -- Coding Horror

For something shorter but very much to the point, read the section on the 4 keeper traits of productivity:
Critical Skill 10 -- Successful Blog

© 2008

Friday, July 4, 2008


This would really be sad were I weaving with shuttles instead of passing pirns through the shed with my hands.

Messy pirns

If using them in shuttles, I would have to rewind them onto new pirns as Karren suggested here.  Rewind them correctly, of course..........

Related Post:   Pirn Winding

© 2008

Thursday, July 3, 2008



Recently I posted on how easy it would be to design a simple twill for towels for my daughter.  Go here to read it. This is quickie photo of one of a set I designed and wove some years ago.  8/2 unmercerized cotton.  Shrunk a great deal.  Shows no sign of wear. Kitty is value added..........

towel 2005


Yes, each towel I treadled a bit differently and with different colors. But since the towels I am now planning to weave are for my daughter, I would like them to be just a little special.  Color-and-Weave had been my initial thought.


Crackle is what I am thinking about now.  Crackle treadled polychrome yields what is basically a twill fabric, and twill is what I would like. 

I've already come up with some treadling ideas:

1. Treadle with two colors, just alternating the colors, as I did in the sample on this blog post. Use different colors for each towel.

2. Treadle two colors, but use one color on two blocks for a while; then change to two different blocks; etc............

3. Treadle with three colors alternately as I did on the sample on this blog post.  A white warp with ecrus and creams could be quite lovely...........and quite unlike me!

So why not give it a shot?

Related Posts: 

More Polychrome Treadling

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


I am feeling tenuously happy with what is going on.  But there is nothing like a photo to point up problems.

art piece 3 continues

In the photo, the piece breaks into two parts along the warp.  On the right, things tend to be a bit cherry and on the left they tend to be red.  The right side also appears paler than the left side.   And there is a clear visible line that separates the two sides.


The cause of all of this is that there are different reds in the warp ends. If you go here, you can see the two different reds I used for the warp. The colors don't look very different.  One is slightly more cherry than the other and perhaps a tad lighter as well. But you have to study the cones to see the differences.

And if you check the pictures of the warp being wound on, which are here, there seems to be no difference at all.  In fact, I wondered why I went to the bother of trying to distribute the colors in groups across the warp.  What differences there were were so subtle as to be virtually invisible.

Or so I thought. 

Once the weaving started, the differences made themselves known. Here is a photo of the bare warp ends as I was doing the hemstitching on this third piece:

Different reds in warp ends 

The photo as a whole is a bit too bright and light, but it shows very clearly the distinctions in color.That lighter pink section on the right is precisely where the problem shows up in the weaving.

There are some lighter pink sections on the left, but they are smaller and more diffuse. They do not have the excessive impact on the woven cloth that the larger pink section on the right has.

But what about that dividing line?  It is not just that there is a sharp division between the scarlet and the pink. There is one warp thread between those two sections that is just a tad lighter than the pink.  Looking at the warp ends, I can barely tell that it is lighter.  But once the weft is woven, the line screams out.

SOOO.....I HAVE LEARNED...........

  1. It takes only one warp end of a slightly different color to emphasize block divisions.
  2. I cannot be subtle in warp color changes in one area and very unsubtle in other areas. 
  3. Colors on the cone and on the warp bundles can look very different when they are pulled taut on the loom.
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  4. Color changes in the warp need to be carefully thought out and planned even when the color changes are very small.

Addendum:  the white thing in the bottom right hand corner is part of the white tape I use to measure the woven fabric.  I have unpinned part of it and rolled it back so that it would not obscure so much of the photographed fabric.

© 2008

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


Wood turning is not weaving, although wood is a kind of fiber. I have always loved wood shops and lumberyards. The feel of the wood. The tools. In high school I took a class in woodworking--the only girl in a sea of boys. The boys were quite helpful to this ignorant student. From time to time, the itch to start working in wood has made itself known. Realizing that my husband would hit the ceiling if I took on another hobby, I kept it under control. But I do love wood.

Woodturning is not weaving. Still, wood is a kind of fiber. And creative artists in other areas often have things to say that transcend their own media. This, I believe is the case with Bill Luce, wood turner.

There is an interesting piece in the June 2008 issue of The Crafts Report. Another of my fantasies is to become a professional weaver. So on occasion I pick up this most interesting periodical. This June issue contains an interview with a wood turner by the name of Bill Luce.

At the end of the article, Luce explains that he is driven to creating work that is fulfilling his own vision of the piece more than he is driven to creating work for large monetary gains. The implication of this, of course, is that he could make more money if he were to choose the alternate route. In the final paragraph, the author gives the following quotation from Luce:

If we don't create work guided from within, how will we ever create truly great work?....Merely guessing what might please someone else just can't take you to that same level of creativity, innovation and excellence. (page 27)

My weaving path, these past few years, has definitely been guided by my own inner stirrings and needs, not by what someone has told me to do, nor by what I think I ought to be doing. Certainly not by the market. I am fortunate that I do not need to worry about the market. Or perhaps that is not a fortunate thing. Sometimes I do wonder.

But, though I follow my own path, I cannot possibly aspire to the levels Luce is talking about. Still, those levels do exist in my imagination as a kind of ultimate and unachievable ideal.

To learn more about Bill Luce and to see some of his work, go to his website. Don't miss the page "About My Work." He has much to say about his own creativity.

Related Posts:

Style and Originality

© 2008