Sunday, August 13, 2017

It's Fair Time Again

If it's August, it must be Nevada County Fair time.  Many of the Not 2 Square members entered their spun, woven or knitted items into the Wool, Fibers and Textiles Section.  We are lucky enough to display in a nice cool, clean building rather than one of the other open buildings.  (They were not quite barns, but they sometimes felt like it.)

In this post, we are featuring Ingrid and Sue's entries.  

Ingrid entered nine items this year.  

She entered two baby blankets.  These are from different warps, but are made in a similar way.  The warp is a mixed warp of different cotton yarns, in varying thicknesses.  The purple warp has more similar sized yarns that the green/yellow one.  The weft is a synthetic blend.  These are both woven in plain weave.  The variegated colors really bring interest to the otherwise plain weave structure.

Baby Blanket

Baby Blanket

Ingrid's next items are two scarves.  They are both woven using Malibrego yarn but are from different warps.  Both scarves are threaded to an advancing twill on eight shafts.  One is woven with a 2-2-3-1 tie up and the other a 2-1-1-1-2-1 tie up.



She also entered two shawls.  These are woven from Mountain Colors yarns.  The purple is wool and merino and the orange/gold shawl is wool and alpaca.  The structures are both an extended point twill with a 1-1-2-1-1-2 tie up.  


Ingrid also submitted two towels for judging.  One (on the right) is a twill in 10/2 cotton.   It has an irregular point twill design. The second is a turned twill design woven using cottolin.   Full information about this towel can be found at Ingrid's blog:

Weaver's Poker Towel

Twill Towel

Finally, Ingrid entered a scarf in the Nevada County Inspiration Division.  This category challenges the entrant to create a piece that is inspired by something in the County.  Ingrid chose Fire as her inspiration.    

This scarf is woven with sock yarn, sett at 15 epi.  he structure is an extended point twill with a tie up that is almost a 2/2 twill.

Nevada County Inspiration Scarf

Sue entered two items in this year's Fair.

The first is a towel. 

The second is a inkle band.

Stay tuned for more Fair entries from the Not 2 Square members.

Friday, August 04, 2017

The Looms we Love - Part 2

 Here is Eileen's 8 shaft Macomber.  She bought the loom from someone who was downsizing and wanted a smaller loom.  Eileen loves how solid the loom is - good tension, easy to treadle and wide enough for big projects.  She keeps this loom pretty busy these days.

But like most weavers, Eileen has other looms as well.  Below is her Ashford table loom.  Perfect for weaving outdoors in the summer time.

Not shown, is Eileen's newest member of her loom family; an 8 shaft Schact Wolf Pup.  She can't wait to get started with a warp on it.

Ingrid's main loom is a big, 8 shaft Cranbrook countermarche loom and she weaves almost everything on it..  Because Ingrid is tall, she finds this particular loom very comfortable.

But one loom is never enough!  This is Ingrid's 24 shaft AVL Studio loom with a compudobby. 

..... and her cherry, Schact Baby Wolf.  Ingrid often weaves scarves on this loom and it goes with her to workshops.

More looms to come in our next post.  Our weavers love their tools!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Our looms and our weaving tools - Part 1

Every weaver needs a loom of some sort.  Many of the Not 2 Square Weavers started out on rigid heddle looms and have progressed on to four and eight shaft looms.  In fact, almost everyone in our group now has an eight shaft loom and loves the freedom to weave many of the more complicated structures that eight makes possible.

We thought that it might be fun for our readers to see our looms, and what we weave on them. 

We start the series with a relatively new weaver, Diane C.  Although Diane also likes back strap weaving and has taken classes with Laverne Waddington, she also sports a Schacht,  8 shaft Mighty Wolf.  As she began weaving on the loom, she documented her projects by taking a photo of her project while still on the loom.  As you can see, lots of variety here.  Is it possible that starting out with an 8 shaft loom lets you progress as a weaver more quickly?
Marcy E. started out with a four shaft loom.  I believe it was a Gilmore and she happily wove on it for several years. (see the photo below).
When Marcy learned about an 8 shaft Gilmore that was a real deal, she snapped it up right away and sold her old loom.  Marcy has mastered the art of tying new warps on to old ones and loves to do a series of projects with color changes in the warp.  See the evolution of colors displayed on her new 8 shaft loom below.

This new loom has a wonderful light and a raddle on the castle.  Marcy hangs bits a pieces of weft yarns from the loops since she always warps front to back and doesn't use the raddle.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Using the Open Reed

Wendy-Marie was really interested in trying the scarf that appeared on the cover of  Handwoven May/June 2017.  She tried a new colorway and wove her first scarf.  Immediately she didn't like what the spacing of the yarns in the reed did to the plain weave portion of the scarf.  Since the technique to make the medallions at each end of the scarf requires that you skip three dents between the motifs, the plain weave sags into these open dents.  See the photo below.

In trying to figure out a system to get around this problem, Igor and Beryl suggested she borrow their Open Reed  This would allow her to sley the reed according to the directions given , but when the plain weave portion of the scarf began, she could open the top of the reed, and move threads over for even denting, recap the reed and start weaving. When she reached the border motifs she again opened the cap on the reed and reversed the process to leave the open dents.

Here is the reed with the open dents

And here is the reed with the warp resleyed

Because moving threads with the open reed can be tricky, it was suggested that she brace the reed so that it wouldn't fall forward or backward during the resleying process.  Meticulous work, but it paid off.  Below is a close up of the finished scarf. Notice the nice clean appearing plain weave section.
And here are the two scarfs shown side by side.  The results are more pronounced when you can see the scarves in person, but the Not 2 Square weavers did like the "fix" for this design.


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Empty Yarn Cones - The Great Recycling Dilemma

This blog post was originally published about 7 years ago and deals with a problem that most weavers encounter - what to do with empty yarn cones.  Sure, you can throw them away, but weavers are a thrifty lot and many are uncomfortable with that obvious solution.  The search has continued for a better recycling idea.

It turns out that Pinterest has dozens of pinned solutions from many crafters/artists and probably a lot of primary school teachers. 

(I had an ulterior motive for reposting this article.  Now I have a link to share when I'm handing out free cones.)

Friday, June 02, 2017

Combining Card Weaving and Regular Weaving

This blog post was written by Not 2 Square member, Wendy-Marie, about a technique she has been wanting to try for a long time. 

"This month I tried out combining loom and card weaving. With guidance from Inge Dam’s book Tablet-Woven Accents for Designer Fabrics, I made an experimental piece, 8.5” wide (7” for the loom-woven section and 1.5” for the tablet-woven section). The yarn was 5/2 cotton; sett was 16 epi in the loom section and 2 cards per dent in the tablet section. Inge Dam uses finer yarn, her largest grist being 10/2 cotton. 

Some things I learned:
  • For the tablet section, the sett is gauged by “cards per dent,” rather than ends per inch.
  • The cards are placed behind the reed, so an Ashford loom is not really suitable for this kind of work.
  • To hide unsightly white weft at the band border, I found a cloth marker that matched my blue warp, and colored the white speckles blue. (Inge Dam uses a particular card warping method that avoids the weft-at-the-selvedge problem.)

Since one must turn the tablets as well as change sheds for every pick, it is a time-consuming process, and I thought the same product could have been achieved more easily by making the band separately and sewing it to the cloth. However, I’d like to try one more loom-tablet hybrid using 10/2 cotton."

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Blue and Violet Tencel Scarf.

We are trying a new approach here on the Not 2 Square blog.  Instead of a couple of us writing up descriptions all the time, we have invited our members to explain their process and details about their pieces.  Mardi N. offered to do the first post about her tencel scarf.

This is my first project using Tencel. It is essentially a scarf length sample.

I had already woven one scarf using the Dornick Twill #196 by our own Dee Jones that I found by accident in Strickler’s Book of 8-Shaft Patterns. The first scarf, magenta was treadled as directed in #196. For this second scarf with the same threading, I decided to use the alternate treadling, #197.

Half of the yarn was dyed in KathrinWebber’s class last spring and the blue gray stripes in this scarf were dyed at home as it was necessary to augment my supply of warp to achieve 10 ½ inches in the reed. The yarn used was 10/2 Tencel. For the weft I chose some wine colored rayon of unknown grist that I had in my stash.

The sett was 20 EPI and the PPI was approximately 19-20. The overall length on the loom was 72 inches, not counting the fringes. After wet finishing, the width was 8 ½ inches and the length 64 ½ inches. Take up was 12% and the overall draw in was about 20 %.

I was extremely pleased with the weight and the hand of the scarf. - Mardi