Sunday, September 18, 2011

On & Off the Loom

 This little roll of fabric just came off the loom yesterday.  The bulk of it is 10/2 cotton, but the two sections with multicolored stripes are 100% wool (merino, I think!).  I wove and cut off a sample from this warp and the wool shrank beautifully creating soft ruffles of the cotton.  I have yet to wash these.  One scarf is the plaid you see here.  The other is all the darker red/magenta in the weft.

The weave structure is plain weave for most of the width and basket weave for the wool stripes.

This card represents one of the many little steps I hope to take in the next few months.  I have begun working on the Handweaving Guild of America's "Certificate of Excellence in Handspinning" (aka COE or COE-H).

worsted spinning on left; woolen on right.
The COE requires 40 skeins of handspun and each skein is to be labeled with a card that specifies, among other things, the "type of spinning".  I tend to spin a "semi-worsted" style of yarn and not think about spinning type much, so I sat down and read some reference books about types of spinning and then got to work on spinning some "worsted" yarn and then some "woolen" yarn.

I used some commercially prepared Romney wool roving and first combed some of it with my single row mini combs.  The combed wool was pulled through a diz (holes punched in an old yogurt lid!) and pulled into a prepared top.  The resulting yarn is smooth and dense and has a nice sheen to it.  Next I took the short bits from the combing process and carded them with my cotton cards.  After one or two passes on the cards, I rolled the wool into a fluffy rolag and began to spin with a long draw and attenuated the fibers to a narrow yarn.  The result, a poofy, slightly irregular yarn (something for me to work on!) that has more loft than the worsted yarn and much less sheen.

Learning is so cool!

No comments: