Saturday, January 02, 2010

Train of thought / 2010 Goal

The train of thought in creating cloth is pretty amazing sometimes! This piece of striped fabric started it's mental journey as a One Skein, knit Tank Top. The basic idea is to knit two identical pieces and seam them together with the seams in center front and center back. One side is seamed with the knit side showing; the other with the purl side showing. Cool idea by Leigh Radford!

The first change in the mental road was the realization that I weave faster than I knit and I'd like to work on making handwoven clothing this year (I'm still 3/4 of the way done making a muslin of the vest that I eventually want to have in handwoven fabric). Ah-ha! Two or three pages of calculations later, I had an idea of what I would need in terms of finished fabric, and I headed off to to search their archives for interesting weave structures. I found one or two (or eight or ten!) patterns I liked and the rest, they say, is history.

Except, that history has a way of being written and re-written even as it is happening. What I thought would be an ideal warp yarn turned out to be chock full of knots and thin (moth eaten?) spots. This yarn came from my grandmother, so I think the damage was inherent in the yarn before I received it (I hope!)....there were too many thin spots deep inside the cones of yarn for me to think it was recent damage. At any rate, I had to pause winding the warp, take the yarn to the ball winder and wind it into usable balls. Deep breaths help at moments like this!

My calculations showed that I might be able to squeak the entire piece out with my one ball of colorful weft, but reality sunk in after 4 or 5 inches of weaving...I was packing the weft in one thread tighter than my calculations. There was no way I would be able to finish the piece. I tested my two weft yarn patterning ('s one shot of colored weft and one of the tan warp yarn as weft), and un-wove it all. Gulp.

It was a good thing I un-wove...I discovered that my stretchy weft yarn was pulling my selvages in significantly! Funny how I couldn't see it as I wove, but un-weaving it was really obvious! Once back to weaving I made sure to let the stretchy yarn relax or bounce back before I packed it in.

What a long story for a single photo! It will be fun to see what clothing I can create this year. I have high hopes of doing a stellar job of beginning! (Which translates to lots of beginning stuff that may or may not be very useful! :)

Best wishes for 2010!

1 comment:

Benita said...

Maybe I just like winging it better, but I tend to weave a piece of fabric and see what pattern fits it. Easier than doing all those calculations. :)