Monday, 27 January 2014

And Samples...

So what to do with small amounts of very pretty, handspun wool? Samples, of course!!! Here's what I did with the woad-dyed Finnish Jaala wool from the previous post:
Striped tabby sample: Before and after fulling
The white yarn is also spun from the Jaala wool Mervi gave me and I thought I'd use it to try out a few stripes in both regular tabby and extended tabby. Medieval fabrics often have stripes in a different weave from the rest of the cloth. Making weft-faced stripes in an otherwise more or less balanced cloth makes the stripes stand out more and the difference can be seen quite clearly in my sample (see Textiles and Clothing, c.1150-1450. Medieval Finds from Excavations in London for examples of actual medieval fabrics with stripes).

This sample isn't woven on a proper loom; I simply put some warp threads between two clamps and used a shed rod and soft heddles for the countershed. Rather sloppily tied heddles, I might add. Well. I should have known better. The one thing about heddles is that they should never ever be sloppy. They are what makes weaving work (among other things), unless you decide to pick each and every shed by hand. Still, I managed to get 30 cm of weaving out of this 4 cm wide set-up before I gave up. It's been a long time since I did any serious weaving like this, with soft heddles and no reed, and I'm really out of practice! It was difficult to keep both the width and the weft even. Next time I'll use my table loom instead, even if it's for a small sample like this. It takes a little longer to set up, but it makes the weaving so much easier...

So, after two weeks of working with this very appropriately coloured Finnish wool, my stash of samples is happy to receive the following additions:
Finnish wool, finished


The white and blue balls of yarn in the middle are the ones I used for weaving. The third yarn is a two-ply spun from the leftover fibres from the combs, sorted and teased out by hand. The fourth yarn is also spun from the leftover fibres, but straight from the combs, lumps and all. It's interesting to see what a difference a bit of extra work does to the quality of the thread!

4 comments:

indemejarecristi said...

Lovely work! A great example with the yarns in different thickness and quality.
Good work! :)
/ Maria

Sahra said...

Thank you for this impressive test with blue wool. I´m extremely happy see the whole process and result.
And this means that I need to keep bringing you wool...
Mervi

Harma said...

You shouldn't have missed out on the last Forum. I demonstrated the set-up for the woven Möbius with very easy to make tidy heddles and an easy way to weave on my sprang frame. It worked like a dream. From making the warp with about 60 ends to starting to weave only took an hour. Weaving in between the presentations and the workshops only took two days.

Martina said...

Och där fick jag svar på min fråga! :-) Jättekul att få se! Tack för att du delar med dig!!