Tuesday, 22 December 2009


First of all, here's a photo of the blanket.

Still got a few small bits and pieces to tweak, but it's essentially done. (Has been for the last month, too slack to take photos until now).

Next project isn't going to be a bag after all. Instead, I think it's going to be some towels (or possibly tea towels). I'd like to make a start over the Christmas break, but I don't know if that will actually happen or not.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

New project thoughts

I think the next project is going to be a bag. Probably also a sampler, to make for a decent length warp, but I'll see what sort of threading ideas I come up with.

I think I want to use something like mercerised cotton, whatever size is easiest to get hold of. At least two colours, maybe only two.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Slack at posting

The blanket has been basically finished for a month now. (There are a couple more mistakes to fix that I spotted after washing, but nothing too awful. Also, the fringing is not all the same length at the moment).

And I still haven't taken a photo of it. I'll get there eventually, but I'm really struggling to force myself to do it sooner rather than later.

I'm also not sure what the next project will be, although for various reasons I don't know that I'll manage to get much done over the next six months. (I'd like to, and I'm itching to get something new on the loom, but I've got a whole bunch of other non-weaving stuff that I actually have a deadline for.)

So, short version: Next post should be blanket photos, but may instead be optimistic dreaming about the next project.

I guess I'll have to wait and see...

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Actually done something.

Finally got around to working on the blanket again. I think most of the mistakes have been fixed now, and I'm a quarter of the way through twisting the fringing. I appear to not be able to count though, so I had to rearrange the spacing a little bit.

Will check for mistakes again when the fringing is done, and if I don't find any then it might just about be washing time.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Oh dear...

I really have been very slack. Still nothing new on the loom, and I haven't even finished fixing up the mistakes in the blanket.

In my defence I have been kind of busy with other stuff - I've managed to come up with a few sewing (and embroidery) projects with deadlines. There may be some related weaving, but that will depend how the sewing goes, and what else crops up.

It seems a little sad having my loom sitting in the corner of the lounge all naked and unloved, but I really want to get some of the embroidery out of the way before I expand the project to include weaving.

Sunday, 24 May 2009


Is off the loom. No accidental linking of layers, but there are at least a few mistakes/skips to fix up.

That is all. No idea what comes next.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Finally weaving again

After weaving a couple of inches I realised that I'd messed up the treadling order, so the loom got ignored for a while.

Tonight I undid my few inches, and have redone them plus a bit more. And as a bonus I modified the way the fold was sleyed (stretched out to half an inch wider). Looks like it's still pulling in a bit more than it technically should, but I'm not really too concerned about it.

I'm not in any particular hurry at the moment - I now need to refill my bobbin, but I'll soon be up to the next colour, and I don't have more bobbins yet (collecting them on Saturday).

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Or not...

Monday night I dealt with the tie up. Last night I tied it all up and did 4 shots of waste yarn. And then I realised that I'd tied it up wrong. I'm aiming for double width huck lace, but I failed to tie every second treadle the "other" way. So I was basically getting a very dense 3-1 twill. Sigh.

And I think I may have already broken a warp thread (hit by the shuttle, I think).

I guess tonight I will be retying 4 treadles and trying again (maybe with slightly more shuttle control, and probably more care).

I have a funny feeling this may turn into a nightmare project, depending on how easily my warp breaks...

Monday, 30 March 2009

Progress! But no photographic evidence...

I managed to get the heddles all threaded by the end of Friday (Hurrah!). On Saturday I sleyed it, and yesterday I tied all the ends so all I need to do now is tie it onto the front beam. Maybe tonight... And then I'll have to start organising (and winding) shuttles. Oh, and I've just realised that I still need to sort out my tie up.

I have no photos though. I think I have taken some, but our home internet is currently down, so no uploading will be happening until Thursday night (at the earliest).

Thursday, 26 March 2009

I have been slack.

I said in the last post that I hoped to have the loom threaded by the end of the week. It still isn't done. It took me a while to even get the warp wound on, and I broke half a dozen threads in the process.

I then had to actually work out what my threading was, which I did last night. And then I started threading. I got about 10% done, and it took me just over an hour (I think). Which isn't too bad, I guess. I'm aiming to get a bit more done tonight, and then I'm hoping that I will in fact be able to get it all done by the end of this Friday (another day off work).

And as a complete aside, Geodyne gave me this

Of course, this means I'm supposed to do things like nominating more people for it. Only problem is, I think most of the blogs I read have already seen it. So to anyone out there that hasn't, I'm sorry I missed you - you're welcome to take it.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Results of dyeing

Dyeing is all done now, and I (finally) have photos.

First attempt:

The pink on top is what the yarn started out as. It's a linen/synthetic blend (2 plies, the pink is synthetic, the linen is pale brown)

The one on the right was supposed to be much more purple - this was closer to the burgundy I wanted to make later (unfortunately I wanted a different quantity of that).

The not-really-purple was then overdyed with some more blue, and at the same time I dyed the burgundy:

The green is my favourite. And here is a closeup of it, to show how different the two plies are.

This photo shows the sheen on the linen to some extent, but it is actually even prettier.

And last night I got nearly half the warp wound. I'm hoping that I can get it all ready for weaving by the end of Friday.

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

More dyeing

Got another two batches of dyeing done tonight - purple and green. The green looks like it's pretty much exactly what I wanted, the purple may be a bit redder than I was aiming for. I'll have to see what they look like when they're dry (and take photos), but I may change my plans slightly. I had been planning to do the fourth colour as a burgundy, but if the purple is too red then I may pick something completely different.

Monday, 23 February 2009

Dyeing and ribbon

I managed to get some dyeing done this weekend. Wasn't sure how it would turn out, but it actually worked approximately how I had hoped. The yarn is a 2 ply, one ply is a pale brown linen, the other ply a dusty rose synthetic. I used Earth Palette reactive dye (blue), and as I had hoped the pink failed to take any of it. The blue is actually darker than I had thought it would be (I suspect because I used the weight of the yarn, rather than the weight of the linen for my calculations). I'm still trying to work out whether I want to do a purple batch too. I think I may have to dig out one of my other dye pots and do two batches at once next time.

The tablet weaving is progressing slowly - it works well when I can sit down and work on it uninterrupted, but it's not so good when I'm trying to do things like cooking dinner at the same time. It's about 50cm long so far. There are a few mistakes, and the tension is horribly uneven (both of these are at least partly because of not just working on it constantly). I still like the effect of the floats, and I definitely like my new cards (super-thin plywood, rather than playing cards). They're much easier to manipulate, and seem to tangle a lot less than the playing cards did.

I'm not sure how well the ribbon will photograph - I'll have to have a good play and see just how good my camera is at close-ups.

Thursday, 12 February 2009

New weaving

I haven't managed to get any dyeing done so far, but I did start a new piece of weaving. Tablet weaving this time, it's just a small green satin ribbon to use as a lacing cord. It's made to this design (Third pattern here). I'm only using 14 cards though - 2 on each side for the border. I wasn't sure it was working to start with, but it's now about 10cm long and I'm quite happy with how it's working.

I've planned for it to be about 1m long, and it's about 5mm wide. It may actually be a bit wider than I wanted, but I'll see what it's like to use when it's done.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Weekend progress

This weekend I managed to get around to buying a notebook, with the theory that I'll use it for keeping track of weaving stuff. And it's kind of worked so far (admittedly I've only had it for two days).

Thus far I have done more planning for the next project than I had managed in the weeks of pondering that I've had until now. It's going to be a blanket with huck lace panels, woven double width. I managed a couple of pages of calculations, the result of which was me winding some skeins of yarn for dyeing. I'm hoping to get them washed tonight in preparation, and if I'm doing really well I'll be able to wind the warp in the weekend. If I'm not doing so well I may have to get some more (possibly different) dye.

And once I've done that I shall have to start collecting notes for the other things I want to try...

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Photos (finally)

I took these photos last week, but only got around to uploading them last night. The photos showing a lighter blue are closer to the actual colour.

First tea towel:
Whole thing

Close up on front

Close up on back

Second tea towel:
Whole thing

Close up on front

Close up on back

Third piece (face cloth perhaps?):

Last bit - just a sampler to see how close to the end of the warp I could comfortably get.

My favourite pieces are the white cloth and the second tea towel. And I now have a better feel for my loom, which was the real point of the exercise.

Monday, 26 January 2009


Finished the weaving yesterday evening, the fabric strip has now been zigzagged and washed. Just need to hem and take photos now.

I had planned to make two tea towels, and see how much loom waste I ended up with. I got the tea towels, and a square face cloth, plus a smaller sampler (all up I think I had enough for three tea towels). I got within 40cm of the end of the warp, and had about 10cm lost for the tie on to start with. All in all I'm quite impressed - I expected to have more loom waste than that. I do plan to try and avoid working quite so close to the end of the warp again, it was rather awkward. But I know I can do it if I need to.

Next project is possibly a lightweight blanket. I have to do lots of planning first though, including counting heddles to see how many I have.

I'm aiming to get photos of the weaving I've just done sometime in the next few days.

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Hin und wieder details

Here is the draft for the second tea towel:

Both warp and weft on these are cottolin - the warp is mostly natural, weft mostly blue. I used both these yarns in the summer and winter napkins, but the napkins had a cream cotton warp, the natural cottolin was the tabby weft and the blue was the pattern.

I'm starting to try and think about the next weaving project now - only problem is, I don't know what I want to make next.

Friday, 23 January 2009

And it's going!

The loom is now officially happy. I got it threaded up and started weaving a little while ago now, but have only just gotten around to collecting evidence.

The loom:

And the weaving:
First, just to prove that it's on the loom and looks happy.

This warp is supposed to be two tea towels. It's partly a trial run of the loom to get used to how it feels before doing anything more major. It's also a check to see how much loom waste and stuff I end up with.

So far I've woven one and a half. The patterns are hin und wieder, the first one was a draft I got from handweaving.net. The second one was a tie-up that I designed.

First one:

And the second one, which I like better:

I'm hoping to get the warp finished in time to have the tea towels washed, and possibly hemmed, by Tuesday evening...

Monday, 5 January 2009

The Loom appears to be happy (fingers crossed)

After a few days of confusion, I think I've just fixed up the last few things on the loom set up. I had been having problems with the warp beam tension - I couldn't get it to wind forwards, no matter how hard I tried. Meg (MegWeaves) was helping me work through issues that I might have, and after a flash of inspiration I realised my brake cable was twisted on the drum. After a bit of fiddling, it's all straightened out, and seems to work much more happily now.

Fingers crossed that I won't run into too many more problems in weaving...

Thursday, 1 January 2009

And some photos...

First of all a couple of napkin pictures:



I'm reasonably happy with how these came out. Next time I try summer and winter I'll have to actually use a finer tabby weft...

And now for the loom pictures. First of all, the table loom shoved ignominiously out of the way in the library. (Yes we have a library, or at least a room where all the bookshelves live. And yes, that is a soft toy lobster on one of those shelves...)

And the replacement model. It's distinctly bigger than the table loom...

I think I may have to move the loom a bit further out from the wall, but I'm hoping not.

I managed to get the rest of the setup done today, and have done a tie up for my first pattern attempt (a Hin und Wieder pattern). I haven't wound the warp yet, but I'm planning to make a couple of tea towels, probably changing the tie up for each one. I think it's even vaguely possible that I may manage to start weaving before I have to go back to work on Monday.

Festive towel photo (finally)

And here is the long awaited photo. I really haven't managed to do them justice, I think I really need to work on taking artistic photos rather than just utilitarian ones. I have no photos of the calendar because it managed to get tidied away while I was away for Christmas, and I haven't sorted through the tidied stuff yet.


Needless to say, I really like these towels. I haven't managed to bring myself to use them yet - I think they may end up being used as hand towels (I would keep them for using on good china or silverware, but we don't have any...)

All in all a fun exchange.