Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Some more linen designs

Spurred on by the arrival of my consignment fromJos Vanneste, I spent quite a long time sitting looking at it and wondering what to do with it!  So, building on my last lot of lacy linen, this new one is a step forward - the sley involves some crammed dents and some dents with only one end in them, the shotting is very wide and in a dark brown 16lea linen I got originally from Herdmans some years ago.The general effect on the front of the loom is a bit scary!  The draft is a staggered herringbone - 92 ends twill followed by 8 ends of herringbone.  The choice of this draft was because I don't know what the warp is going to do in the finishing.  If it all moves over, I'd rather it stopped against the herringbone instead of cramming up down one side.  Of course, I could be wrong  - I probably am.... but it's good fun seeing what's going to happen!

I started with the lovely autumnal orangey shade and, because it has to be hand-finished after weaving, I warped up 43 metres (which on a Nm6 took almost the whole 5kg) and am going to weave it in 10m lengths.  From experience I know that, even with arms as long as mine, anything in excess of 10m becomes a fiasco!  Here's a pic of the loom-state cloth.  Very stiff and net like.  This afternoon I'm going to cut off the first 10m, hem and finish, so look out for the finished cloth.  This picture is a bit strange as it doesn't look orangey at all - guess it must be the artificial light - it hasn't got properly daylight here for what seems like days.

Is there anything in this world more wonderful than a great big armful of Wensleydale wool?  If there is, then pleasedo  let me know!  The fibre arrived as a huge batt off a commercial carder and it was just amazing to spin - really quick and smooth. I plied two ends together to make something a bit like a commercial DK but much softer.  Guess it'll have to go back to Tracy at Gedgrave Wensleydales (see link on right), but I'm hoping to hang onto a few hanks, dye them and use them as the woollen element of some linsey-woolsey wraps for her.

In the loomshed just now we are finishing off the orange lacy linen, warping up another of the same but in a warm speckled wine shade, washing and hanking some rasta Wensleydale (another lot for Gedgrave), and looking out some spinning to do for Teo of of Broadford, Isle of Skye.

The weather has been truly horrid over the past few weeks with hardly a dry wind-free day.  The croft has gone muddy, the sheep are getting used to a diet of hay again, and the Aylesbury ducks seem to have gone a dirty grey colour.  The only cheerful soul is No-name Turkey who is looking relaxed as she knows that she will live to see another Christmas.....

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