|A Shaded Twill|
|— and —|
|The Year Ahead|
At the beginning of the year, I like to take some time to recap my weaving for the past year and to look forward to the coming year.
There are two reasons as to why I like to look back: I am always surprised at how much I have actually woven; weaving is just part of my fiber work, I also write and teach, on zoom during this pandemic time. So, seeing the list of pieces and samples that were finished during the year gives me a sense of accomplishment.
The other reason is to ask myself where am I headed with this work: am I happy to stay the course? Do I need to find a new direction?
With Convergence® on the horizon, this past year has been full of sampling for the seminars I will be presenting. I like to either weave new samples or expand the selection; in 2021 I have been sampling rectangular float weaves, including unit weaves, and tied-unit weaves, a total of 10 sampler warps.
I wove 5 pieces that were part of my COVID-19 series all of which I have documented in blogs on this website and, together with the 2019 COVID-19 pieces, were assembled into a booklet which we mailed to family and friends in lieu of a holiday card in December 2021; below is the cover of the booklet.
A few more things were woven: 3 shawls on the AVL and 2 sets of napkins because my husband often remarked that he felt like the shoemaker’s child – no shoes. We now have some nice and serviceable napkins.
With this overview, it’s time to think ahead. I am in the process of organizing the samples to see what else I may want to weave for the seminars and the monographs that I will have for Convergence®. Below is one of the tied-unit weaves samples, single, 3 unpaired ties, 1:1 ratio (a single pattern shaft per block, 3 shafts for ties which alternate with the pattern shaft resulting in a 1:1 ratio of pattern threads to tie threads). Two more samples are in the works already and another in the planning stage. I am sure there will be more. I will re-assess that part of my weaving after the conference.
I haven’t decided about the COVID-19 series. Frankly, I thought we would have moved on from COVID-19 by now. After the delta scarf, described in the December 2021 blog, I was thinking of weaving something for the “new normal” as I described in the December blog. I hadn’t even gone past that thought that omicron arrived….. I decided to take a break from COVID-19 weaving and think about what next.
I needed some comfort weaving, but with a bit of a challenge to keep things interesting: I decided that I would weave a twill I have never woven before and use yarn from my stash, at least one of which had to be a yarn I had never used before.
The yarn was easy. When HGA was closing its on-line store, they had a few skeins of a variety of Convergence® yarns that they were selling deeply discounted, so I bought the very last remanence. I received several skeins of my favorites – and 4 skeins of 10/2 rose Tencel®. There is nothing wrong with the rose color skeins, but as a child I had a rose color dress made of silk taffeta that I just hated, the rustling drove me crazy. So, the rose color skeins have languished in my stash for a few years. That yarn had to be used, even if in small amounts. Here is the yarn wound into a ball, ready for use!
Meanwhile, I was leafing through Davison’s book for twills. The “shaded twill” on page 51 caught my attention. The drawdown below shows that it is composed of stripes of a simple undulating twill and basket weave. I could thread the basket weave section with the rose Tencel®.
I planned on 5 sections of the undulating twill separated by 4 sections of the basket weave. I looked at a few 20/2 silk yarns for the twill, since 10/2 Tencel® and 20/2 silk is a combination I have often used successfully. I settled for a yellow green for the outside twill sections, a bluish green for the next 2 sections, and a variegated silk for the middle section. I sett the entire warp at 24 epi and I adjusted the number of ends so that I could have an 8” scarf. Floating selvages were not needed since the pattern started and ended with a straight will.
Next the weft. I thought a green silk may work, but the pattern disappeared; I tried yellow, but it overwhelmed the scarf – a little yellow goes a long way, but an entire weft is too much. I settled on a cinnamon color 10/2 Tencel® also from the Convergence® batch, which I had used before. The After Image of the cinnamon yarn is a pale bluish green, making the blue-green warp more noticeable.
The complete scarf is the first project off any of my looms this year:
And here is a close up. The undulating portion is a bit unstable, so a warp sett of 28 epi would probably have been better, but the scarf is usable.
It’s time to go back to sampling…..
Have a healthy and safe 2022 and I do hope to see you at Convergence®!