Holiday special

So, now we have opened the doors of this little house:

As it has functioned as a summer-only tourist information for the last 15 years (or so), it isn't exactly full of lamps... "cosy", perhaps?
(And, to say the truth, the electric system has some... quirks, too)

Some of my things for sale are neckwarmers

and the ruffled scarves


The "leaves" are also there, and some fringe twisters, and...

A few more pictures at our joint website, which also has links to the other members.

As it happens, I would be happy to ship even these things all over the world ;-)


Done (for now)

Today winter arrived for real (well - maybe...) - it has snowed all day. I suppose it can be said that it will give a more x-massy feeling when we open our christmas shop on Saturday...

Meanwhile I got the third scarf done, but not without problems.
First, this thingy fell off:

It is the stopper for the flyshuttle cord, and is essential for weaving. See how snall space there is between its end and the wooden piece behind it? I did invent a few words while trying to get it back...

Then I had suddenly lost the knack of flicking the fly-cord out of the way of the shuttle, which resulted in many over-shot shuttles that then had to be retrieved from down-under-and-behind.

When half the scarf was woven, one shaft suddenly started to misbehave, which resulted in 11 faulty picks, that then had to be mended. (How do the rest of you determine when a piece should be scrapped rather than mended? Halfway done, I started to have doubts - but, by then I had done half of it... so I went on.)

After wet finishing and pressing, I decided that the fabric probably would benefit from mangling. (I have never mangled shawls, as I had doubts about the flattened fringes that would result from it.)
But - some time has to be the first time, and why not now?

I have a smaller electric mangle indoors (the Big Monster lives in an outhouse). What with knots and all, it could not be used "as usual" (letting the scarf get rolled up with the protector sheet). I managed to get the first fringe in between the rollers, and out it came in the back:

And boy, did it change the hand of the scarf!!! (and the fringes looked ok, too) So, up I went to get the second - and the electric mangle refused to cope! Sigh. Until - I remembered that I do have a manual  indoors mangle!
And even better: it was a lot easier to get the fringes trough in a controlled fashion!
(As the whole contruction is open, I could let the fringes get taken trough with the help of the protector sheet, stop cranking when the end of the sheet had cone trough, lift out the fringes and let the scarf lie flat again)

So, here they are, all three, showing a bit of all sides:

The colours... well, in the darkness of November...


First of the "leaves"

I was thinking raindrops, but changed my mind and settled for leaf shapes.

I don't know if it qualifies as a "networked" design, so perhaps I should instead describe it as an "irregular dräll"?

For the first one I chose a green (with some blue in it) weft, which I thought would have enough contrast - but...:


The result can be called "subtle", I suppose. It is hopeless to try to photograph things in (what feels to be) total darkness of November, but the leaf-shapes show up better on the striped side than on the green - interesting, or perhaps strange? After all, the colours are exactly the same om both sides...

Even though I was confident about sett (10 ends per cm, cotton 16/2), I decided to cut off and finish the first before I wove on.
Then, of course, I wasn't patient enough to wait for the washing machine - . 

When done and pressed it had a nice hand, so that was ok - especially as I had woven almost half of the next by then..
Blue weft:

...perhaps I should use the blindning orange weft for the third...


sometimes I wish...

...that the AVL was not quite as, er, "sturdy".
The Other Loom has perhaps 4 bolts, and they have to be taken out on only one occasion - when it is to be completely dissasembled.
I have woven on this loom for close to 30 years now, and have never had a problem with the reed falling out, for example. The breast and knee beams lift out easily, the beater lifts off... and no tools required. But it hasn't got a fly shuttle...

Today I shifted from the double fly shuttle box to the single - at least 6 bolts to take out, plus several other small screws and things that require tools. Then, of course, the bolts and screws have to go back in.
The beater top has two bolts, and to change the reed there are many more (9? 10?). To be able to thread at a reasonable rate, the breast beam had to come out - more bolts.

Don't get me wrong. Once "done", the AVL does nearly everything I ask of it - and with the fly shuttle and the auto-advance she is fast, too.

As I could not (easily) adapt this pattern to full inches, I spread the warp with empty sections between the stripes. By mistake, I started sleying "straight", which means the left side of the warp is about one inch wider on the beam. Had I started the sleying just half an inch to the left... but I decided it will not be a problem. Time will tell...

After having got the auto-advance set and the pattern/threading checked, I stopped for the day.

(no, I will use a somewhat less orange yarn tomorrow)

(I've better confess: it helps to have a club when taking out/putting in the wedges of The Other Loom. But a clog will do, in a pinch)


Making more of the fringe twisters

Yesternight (is that a word?) I assembled the first five of a new batch of fringe twisters.
As usual, they have cutlery for handles and chessmen for the turning knobs.

The next five are now drying, being ready to assemble tomorrow:

Of the ten, three have rather un-romantic stainless steel spoons, two have slighly smaller "silver" spoons.

Then, there are the specials - two have old steel knives, and three have rather fancy fish knives:

The steel knives are perfectly safe (dull-edged to the point of having been completely useless to eat something with...), but the fish knives have a slight point. But when I found them, I could not resist to use them!

They are all for sale - SEK 180 plus postage.   (This means a total of 225 inside Sweden.) A good x-mas present for a weaving friend?
Contact me at kerstin (at) bergdalaspinnhus (dot) com - I take PayPal, and ship to everywhere!

How to use them? Here is a description in English, here is the same in Swedish.  (Will be included in the shipment)


The rest of the ruffles

The double warp(s) are now done -

It never ceases to surprise me, the very very different results one gets just by using different wefts! The dark warp has 4 different blues (in 3 different grists), a brown wool stripe in two slightly different nuances, and the purple has 3 different nuances in 2 different grists.
The three different wefts I used:

The bobbin is silk noil, the other two are cotton 16/2 (the red looks browner when alone).
The red-brown gave, as can perhaps be seen (click for larger), even some iridescence in the blue part.

I have opened the sett successively over the years. When I went to weaving school the recommended sett for cotton 16/2 was 15-16 ends per cm for tabby - in these ruffled scarves I am down to 8, and get a stable fabric.   (Well - for scarves!)

On the other hand, reading old weaving books, they never wove cotton scarves... They wove things that had to be sturdy, like bedsheets, for example.
For suppler fabrics they instead went to finer yarns - cotton 30/2 is not uncommon for towels, tablecloths, drapes...
Reading for instance Engeström: Praktisk vävbok (first published 1896), we get recommended a cotton 20/2 at 16 ends per cm for twill - she says it will yield a good quality for kitchen towels, if woven with a "coarser linen or tow weft". For a finer weft, she says, one should go slightly closer.
She has a "dress fabric" (mostly tabby) in cotton 40/2, sett at 24 ends/cm.

If only there were such yarns to be had...

I have looked at our biggest yarn companies here in Sweden - one of them does not offer any cotton finer than 16/2, the next has 63 colours of 16/2, 14 colours of 24/2, all of to 25 colours 30/2, while the third offers 74 colours of 16/2, 56 colours of 20/2 but finer only unbleached.