And we’re back… with a sucessfully delivered gift scarf

There’s not been a lot of weaving happening during my blogging break, mostly because of the same things that meant no blogging! But also because it was kind of tiring working on a gift scarf. (Me, a perfectionist…? Never.)

The good news is that the recipient of the scarf likes it (yay) and while it’s hardly scarf weather here, I’m hoping she’ll find it useful come the chillier months.

And how did I feel about the end product? Pretty good. My selvedges were alright and I only made one, not too visible, error in the pattern. Phew!

sample of the finished zig-zag pattern
Can you see the zig-zag pattern? It’s green and teal which I don’t think this pic shows all that well…

What did I learn from this scarf? A lot! Some of which I’ll talk about in more detail in future posts.

  1. When calculating sett with two reeds on a rigid heddle loom, it simplifies things if you just look at the front reed/heddle.
  2. Patterns in twill can change in interesting ways when you take the tension off and wash them.
  3. Just because you use a floating selvedge doesn’t stop you getting bumpy bits when you are using two shuttles… you need to think about how the floaties relate to the rhythm of the pattern.

I will say that I feel like I’ve conquered 3 shaft twill now. Though I have a few other fun patterns for 3 shaft to try! I might tackle a 4 shaft next…

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From 2.5 to 3

I’ve been in no hurry to put a second heddle on my loom, despite having bought the required kit, but after doing my two and a half shaft yarn-speriment, it seemed a good time to move to three. So, on went the double heddle kit and I chose to try my hand at twill.

Now the thing that I’ve been curious about with twill is it has a different drape to plain weave. In the spirit of research I decided to see how big a difference by doing my twill with the same yarns as my first scarf!

Now, I wasn’t scientific in my approach, so I ended up with more ends per inch than I’d used in the plain weave (and slightly fewer picks per inch), but the result was interesting. Hopefully this image captures that the plain weave is crisper/stiffer:

plain weave versus twill - a side by side comparisonThe twill is on the right and, despite being denser in e.p.i. terms, it is “softer”. The cotton and mohair yarns are the same in both.

Very interesting.

As for weaving with 3 shafts, well, it was easy. The treadling order became a rhythm quickly and I was surprised I didn’t have to concentrate more.

As you’ll know from my bloopers post, I did eventually stuff up the order, but I blame that on having stopped to do some leno (a manually twisted weave):section of leno in my twill scarf

That got me all out of rhythm. Still, it was also an interesting thing to try in a piece of twill.

At some point I’ll tackle a 4 shaft twill, but the next application of my two heddles is definitely double weave!