Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Bird's Eye View

I think you could imagine a huge sigh of relief when I put the scissors across this! Twelve never ending yards of 4/8 cotton for place mats. I got these cut off the day before my brother arrived and so they sat while we visited. All neatly piled up waiting...

The serger made short work of cutting apart and securing edges. The stripy part in both pictures is my 'sample section' for friends.

Here's a closer look at the sampler showing the three treadlings I used. Using the classic bird's eye twill threading of point twill, over 8 shafts: top row is treadled 1 to 8 continuously to produce zig zags. Section 2 is treadled 1 to 8 and back to 1 and produces small diamonds. Section three is treadled 1 to 8 and back to 1, then, 8 to 1 and back to 8 again as a full repeat and this gives you the larger diamonds.

It was a close sett of 18 epi for the 8/4 cotton and here you can see the 10/2 mercerised black weft. There was some sticking of opening the sheds and all weft picks needed a double tap. No doubt the reason why it took so long!

There were some impressive optical illusions created while still on the cloth beam. These appear to be 'ridged' But it's completely flat!

The place mat warp was 12 yards and took far too long to get off the loom.... In my defence, I have been having difficulties with my right ankle so I just plodded along. ( X-rays seem okay and physiotherapy lined up) I don't know why this warp, which seemed like a good idea at the time, just didn't inspire me once on? The bad start of rethreading/ resleying three times was probably a good start down the road to official 'dog on the loom' status. It wasn't going to get the best of me though and I carried on. There were lots of interruptions as life 'happened' plus we've been out and about more.

One more picture of the warp winding onto the cloth beam. This is the large diamonds and the view gives you a look at both sides of the pattern. One being darker, the other lighter. I'm hand hemming them right now in pairs. Final pictures to come when washed and pressed. Two darker, two lighter to make a set of four in each pattern. I already have chosen the larger diamonds for our table and it goes well with our new cream china setting!

Meanwhile, the loom was *covered* in black lint and also black smudges from the dyes in the cottons. {note to self: wash mats separately and use a dye catcher!} I used a dampened Magic Eraser to lift the marks off the wood. Very gently!! I don't want to raise the wood fibres.

Then another bonus feature of having a 20+ tie up assist is this neat trick!

I pulled all cords as tight as they would go and raised all 16 treadles....

Then I'm able to vacuum under the loom to get the lint and dust. I do this after every project comes off the loom and in some cases, if the lint is excessive, I vacuum during as well. You don't want to breathe this stuff, along with dye particles!

Now the loom is clean and ready for the next project "Elena's shawl". Elena is a client who has commissioned me to weave her a shawl and she will be watching the steps here along with the rest of you! Lilibet/ Spring loom still has the runner exchange ongoing and I'll be to that soon.

It's been extremely hot here. History making hot and dry! We're baking, while back east they are drowning in rain. We'd gladly share if it were possible. Lynnette has been keeping me up todate on the fire situation there in the Okanagan as the one last big fire {Terrace Mountain} would have had hubby and me evacuated if we still lived there at Estamont Beach. We watched the fires in 2003 and were on notice to leave our home three times that summer. We are also just as dry here where we live now and so being careful here. We watched them fight the fire of the steep slopes of Mount Maxwell on Salt Spring Island not too long ago, just off the coast from us.
I had a neat visit from my brother last week and we got out and toured a bit. Here's a shot taken at the Crow and Gate Pub near Nanaimo. It's a real slice of England out in the countryside!

Then just as I said good bye to Kent, I developed a toothache and spent the past weekend on pain killers. Monday I was at a dentist bright and early and had an infected wisdom tooth removed. I feel like a mule has kicked me but it can get better now without further intervention.

Hope you are all enjoying your time despite the weather where ever you are!
Back soon....


Janice Zindel said...

Beautifully woven Bird's Eye placemats, really stunning! Love structures where you can treadle and get different looks. Hope your physical problems clear up soon, no fun when you want to be weaving.

Louisa said...

Lovely mats. I'm impressed with your sticktoitiveness! I get bored by the second one. We're melting too! Hope your problems are much better soon. Thinking cool thoughts for us all...

Brenda said...

Had the strangest feeling of deja vu when I peeked at your blog tonight. The very first picture took me back 30 years ago when I first learned to weave.

I was an agronomy student at Olds College who along with two other 'dirt diggers' took a spinning and weaving course offered through the Fashion Merchandising program as a way to keep our sanity.

My final project for the weaving component was a huge floor cushion, woven on a 45" counterbalance almost identical to the one I now own. I was doing an overshot in blue and white, very similar to your placemats in both colour and pattern. And I'd bit off far more than I could chew.

I did finish the pillow, got a respectable mark for it and used the finished item for many years (my kids wore it out).

More importantly, I learned to be a little more thoughtful about my projects!

Sunrise Lodge Fiber Studio said...

Of course, I love the placemats!!! Get well soon!!!

charlotte said...

I love the twill structures in your placemats, they look fantastic. Cutting down long warps is a fantastic feeling, I am curently working on 20 metres of shawls and I am very happy to be past the middle now.
I hope you get some rain soon!

bspinner said...

I would like to know why some projects seem like a good idea but after awhile seem like you'll never finish them too. Sure do admire you for all the work you've put into your lovely place mates.

Sure do hope your ankle is getting better!!!!!

India said...

Lovely pictures. I hope your next projekt will inspire you more.

Life Looms Large said...

I love bird's eye - and its relative rosepath. (At least I think they're related).

A 12 yard warp. I can't imagine how long it would take me....even without good reasons like ankle problems and wisdom teeth!!!

I love the optical illusions in the different pictures.

Good to know that the Magic Eraser works on looms! I love to find different uses for it...and I sing the jingle whenever I get it out to clean!

That 20+ gizmo is pretty cool!! Maybe someday....once I get more shafts on my loom!

Can't wait to see what you come up with for the shawl!! It's cool that the shawl's recipient will get to follow along on your blog, with the rest of us!

Hope your ankle and tooth heal up quickly and well so you can continue to inspire us with all of your amazing weaving!

Take care!


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Sorry for offtopic

Susan said...

Hello Anonymous!
Many thanks for your kind words.
I try hard to portray what I do here at home in my studio and bear in mind that other weavers (of all ages and stages) are watching. Hopefully what I do is helpful!

Thank you for visiting and taking time to write!