Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Sticky Wicket

Port Renfrew series 2015
This is the Sticky Wicket warp!
1. a small door or gate....
2, an opening like a window....

I am renowned in the studio for putting on sticky warps - I can't help myself as I love mohair especially and fuzzy yarns in general, but I am not afraid of them and for the most part never have much trouble with them.  However, of late I was trying to use up some of the stash and they all happened to be the same colour - gray and fuzzy. So I made a warp for Ann to weave on the 12 harness (she has long arms and long legs) as we felt we needed some more ponchos. Lots of complaining went on beaming it as well as weaving it but we are both patient and zone out. Ann was busy so I finished the warp off and yes it was sticky....however I will cover a few tips that I have learned over the years. But first I think I may have had some 'other realm' assistance. I looked at my shuttle and Lilly Bolin's name was on it! And I wove happily with a few adjustments - so here I go with some suggestions....the `wicket` behaves when you use some of these tips.

Mohair goes a long way - you don't need a lot to make a statement. I am not a fan of the mohair blanket - warp and weft - I think it a waste of such a lovely fibre. Blending with wool makes it go farther as well.

Sticky warps are not just mohair of course - boucles can give you a problem or two as well.

Check the reed. In this case I was lazy, I sleyed a 10 dent reed to 8 epi because I couldn't find an 8 - that would have helped in the sticky department.

I have also used spray starch on my warp whilst it is still on the warping board - this helps a lot. Let it dry if you think it will rust your reed. Also make sure the room is warm - damp days make the fibre more sticky.

Beam with your harnesses open - I beam through the front, so I often open the tabby sheds to split the warp - I have no problems with tension if you are wondering about that - my warps go on smoothly and at a good tension.

Weave with a flat Swedish style shuttle - works a charm. Ann uses this ugly taped up rag shuttle that for some reason she loves - I changed shuttles right away and had better success. Also I advanced frequently so the fibres couldn't have a confab and embrace each other (my theory) and beat with the shed open.

On 4 harness looms a direct tie-up is recommended, then you can wiggle your stickies apart if need be. On a 12, it just isn't possible unless you have really big feet.

I leave you now as I am readying for a show.

Music of the day included:
Blaze Foley
Chet Faker
Amelia Curran
Bedouin Soundclash
Anika Moa

............days later - I have finished the last show and will blog a little about that next time - thought I should get this one out.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Attempt at Blogging once again!

It has been a bit of a struggle these past couple of years  - intermittent mingling of thoughts, actions etc. Not to be daunted, I will again attempt to blog on a regular basis. Short meaningful, I hope, thoughts that will put a wiggle in your creative brain!

Today I tried to focus on a few things I needed doing, and to reward myself with something I wanted to do if there were no interruptions - suffice it to say I locked the door and pulled the curtain. It was quiet in the courtyard, so I didn't feel guilty.

I have been obsessed by circles and have explored the making of, in different techniques - tapestry, Theo Moorman, various overshots. The grid poses restriction in order to get a round shape so it is always a challenge. Then I saw an image of woven circles in Google Image and a draft by Susan Poague. Yippee says I, but was unsure of how to do it as the draft was unclear to me. Then Susan's circles were published in Handwoven, and I didn't have that issue. I only buy it now and again, so I had to order it. I got it, followed exactly except for the materials, (I am not a rayon chenille lover) and didn't much like what I saw - I needed it to be airy and light. So resleyed to 12 epi using cotton and tencel warp and linen and cotton/linen in the wefts and played. Yay I love, but then craft fairs got in the way.......
so now I am doing what I want....but the ridiculous part of this textale, is that I had the pattern the whole time in my Strickler's book - Diversified Plain Weave using the point twill and
'swelling' it out......I felt a little bit like a fool, but I had a good laugh too. The egg shape will hopefully shrink into more of a circle after washing and off tension.

I guess the 'wiggle' would be to obsess but take time to think it through - saves yourself a little grief in the end. My brain can be so fragmented with the creative energy and other people's energy that taking time for myself on a regular basis and journal on a consistent basis.

And now I end with the music I listened to throughout the day - everyone likes the music in the studio - today it was a definite mix. Laura Fry ends her blogs with her reading material, but my reading these days is mostly non-fiction and knitting patterns!

Marianas Trench
Alpha Blondie
Lana del Rey
Alison Kraus
Dolly Parton