Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Melinda's Shawl: Under Way

I must have a late blooming variety of rhododendrons as most places I have been to in recent weeks, all their shrubs have long finished their flowering cycle. What ever the reason, our shrub is in its full glory next to our front door. A window in the studio also shares a view so I get to enjoy the show. I also keep an eye out for my little Pacific Tree Frog (or his new tadpole).

So where did we leave off last time I wrote about the shawl... ah, yes.. the tie up!

Here all 12 treadles are finally done and Lilibet can come down off her pedestal. Thank you for all the well wishes for my thumb! Its healed up nicely and we're back in top form again. The tie up did take me far longer to do than normal but I was creative with finger positioning!

Here I have woven a fine header of pink 2/16's cotton and then checked for threading errors. None were detected! I even went over it with a pick glass just to be sure. Next is hemstitching to secure the edge. I cut out a four inch section of cotton and then sew. In this case I want a finer fringe so I'm doing small groups of four ends, so later the final fringe will be twisted groups of eight warp threads.
I wove in the border and got started on the snowflakes! I have woven eight shaft snowflakes before but with twelve shaft, you get much more definition! They are also so much larger which is one reason why I considered them for the shawl. There are three large snowflakes over the 24 inches, plus borders.

( click on any images to enlarge)

This picture gives you the overall perspective. The shawl is 24 inches wide at the fell line.

This is a close up of one " X" with a six inch ruler for scale. As you can see with the larger pattern is makes photographing the whole pattern a bit difficult! Its going to look fabulous !

Trying to capture the pattern when its white on white is also a challenge! So please pardon the varying degrees of light with some of these pictures.

This one shows the leading border, the diamond returns and the feet of the first snowflake. This is all I could manage before having to advance the loom. So I have been weaving away steadily and the only trouble I'm having is the right hand floating selvedge keeps fraying off and I must start another. I have looked at everything including sitting closer to that edge, angle through the reed etc and it appears that the twist in the yarn simple unwinds as it hangs off the back and that is transferred to the thread at the weaving and ..poof... it falls off. Needle weaving the ends in later is not a problem but it would be nice if it behaved!
It took me four afternoons of weaving to complete the the first full shawl of 85". I was also trading off with my other loom so not all that time was on this piece. Here it is hanging on the back of my chair while I tie back on again.

Now to start on shawl number two! I'm going to review my stash and see if there is another soft colour that might show nicely, or stick with the white. Maybe change the fibre?
Choice is nice....
I see by my Google 'followers' counter that I'm approaching a landmark number! This is exciting for me as you can imagine. I will be drawing a name for the prize skein of silk pretty darn soon! Who knew you could feel this happy about turning 100? :)
{Oh, as an aside: I seem to have come down with a summer cold.... crap! It comes a a surprize as you can imagine but I'm grateful it was *after* I saw my Dad.}


LA said...

That shawl is a beauty!!!! I am in awe...your sister is very lucky that she has you to weave for her!

dorothylochmaben said...

Hi There - I see you have beaten the 100 !! Congratulations !
The pictures are fantastic and the size of the snowflake
on 12 shafts is quite amazing and very effective. You have woven it up very quickly. Hopefully we might see pictures of it as you bead it ???
Sorry to hear about the cold though !!

Sunrise Lodge Fiber Studio said...

Wow! It looks fabulous and I just love how the 12 shafts have magnified the pattern! Wonderful stuff;)

barbara said...

Beautiful work as usual, thanks for sharing. Nice to see the 12 harness pattern! Waiting now to see the color choice for the second shawl. Take care of your cold.
Weaverly yours .... Barbara

Anonymous said...

Its posts like this that send me to Webs to drool over floor looms with lots of shafts. Feel better soon!

DebbieB said...

Oh! I like the new blog design!

The shawl is so lovely.

Benita said...

That white on white is so elegant looking! How lovely it would be for a christening shawl, a winter wedding, Christmas concerts and early spring proms. I love looking at the pattern as it moves on the loom.