Friday, 28 March 2014

Tapestry embedded in even weave

Years ago at a college weaving class I described to the instructor that I would make an even-weave scarf with a tapestry section near each end. She discouraged me from that combination because the two structures are incompatible. Each structure needs a different sett for the same width of fabric. Tapestry needs more room between the warp threads to pack down all those weft threads. I compromised by doing an embroidered design on that scarf, but I never really gave up on the idea of combining the two structures in one piece. 

Now I have discovered a way to do it. I was using doubled crochet cotton as my warp and weft. What if I used just one strand of each warp thread in a tapestry section? That would make the sett appropriate for both structures. The first attempt was a square on the side of a tiny purse. I played with two-colour weave, alternating the colours every 8 picks to make a checkerboard pattern. 
I now have another project ready to go. This one will have a tapestry stripe all the way around the purse. You can see the strip of milk jug plastic which I've inserted between the two strands of the warp threads for the tapestry section. I'll start and end the tapestry section with a row of soumak stitch over both strands of the warp threads. The plastic strip will be sandwiched in between the two strands of warp until I take the piece off the loom. Then I'll slit the tape that holds it together and slide it out. My coloured threads are all pre-cut and I'm looking forward to hours of weaving on a long plane journey!

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Another tapestry pouch with the same loom

Another set of colours asked to be used and the loom was still in good shape so I made a second little tapestry pouch. This time I kept the weaving method simple. I used two colours and alternated every pick creating a vertical stripe. 

Usually when I weave in the round I need an odd number of warp threads, but I discovered that the most efficient way to weave this pattern in the round was to have an even number of warp threads and to weave one colour one direction and the other the opposite direction, crossing them at each colour change. So I used one pair of warp threads together for the pattern section. When I switched back to a single colour at the top, I went back to using all the threads individually.

To keep from getting bored with such a simple weave, I graduated the colours within the stripes.