Shrinkage of cotton - mercerised vs un-

I have been doing a lot of differential-shrinkage shawls lately. They have all had a shrinking warp of wool, and a non-shrinking warp of cotton of different grists. Some warps have also contained up to about 30% singles linen.
Woven with non-mercerised cotton or singles linen they all turned out fine. Then I found this mercerised cotton, which had such a nice colour... and decided to use that, too. Of course I knew that merc cotton seldon shrinks, but I had thought it would be trapped in the shrinking warp. I was mistaken. The merc cotton all came out in little (or not so little) loops at the selvedges.

Conclusion: do not use merc cotton *if* you want shrunk edges...

Question: what would have happened if I had not placed a shrinking stripe at the edge? Would there be loops, if there had been weft stripes of this yarn and an ordinary un-mercerized yarn? Does the above phenomenon mean that one should never mix mercerized and un- in the weft?

You can see more differential-shrinkage shawls here.


Observations on fringe twisting

The spinner in me has always wondered about one thing often said about fringe twisting.
Very often you see recommendations like "when you have twisted the two strands, make a knot and twist it 'backwards' until done", or "the battery-operated [...] is good, because you can make it go backwards too". I thought that the fringes would ply themselves until, not "done", but until "balanced", no matter what one tried to persuade them to do.
Finally, I had something to test it on - the experimental shawl (below)...: twisted two strands for about 60 turns, made a knot and let them ply themselves back in the blue part ot the fringe, twisted two strands for about 60 turns, made a knot and "force-plied" them back for 60 turns in the green band.
The 60-turns-plied-back fringes immediately un-plied themselves a bit when let free, but still looked tighter. Were, in fact - unplying one there were about 40-45 turns left of the "force-ply".
So I wet finished the piece - and... after wet finishing, there is no difference at all. There are about 34 "turns" in the second ply in both fringes.

An experimental shawl

- a mis-understood idea that morphed into an totally different one...
The three bands were woven at the same time, beside each other. I had to use three shuttles, of course.
Now and again, two (or all three) of the bands were woven, with a single shuttle, into a wider band.
Warp and weft are all cotton, and the structure is plain weave.
When it was time to join bands, the natural draw-in made it difficult to get the join to look nice.
One part of this experiment was to see if/how this problem could be overcome.

I tried a couple of methods:
- doing nothing
- slackening the tension, then sewing the gap shut for 2-3 " up to the fell
- again slackening the tension, then pinning the bands together a bit away from the fell

The first method left loops.
The third method was difficult, and tended to leave (smaller) loops
The sewing looked as if it would leave holes (distorsions) from the stitches - but after wet finishing
there are no marks, and almost no loops. I should perhaps say that the stitches are meant to be temporary -
they can be taken out already after a couple of inches of weaving.

I have yet to develop the idea further...

Things that don't fit

Welcome to my "oddities" blog!
I have found myself adding odd pages to my website, without finding a natural heading to file them under.
So... this is the new home for my orphan pages.

At this moment I do not intend to update the blog in a regular fashion, but who knows...