Monday, September 17, 2007

Warping Day 1 - continued

I wanted to finish up writing about day 1 before I go complete my weaving chores for day 3 of warping. My loom should be ready for weaving by the end of my tapestry should be ready for blocking. This does give a clue as to how successful my latest techniques were.

In this photo you can see the start of the warping with the mint green polyester thread. I warp front to back. Through the reed and the heddles and tie on the back. By rolling the thread onto the back beam through the heddles it forces me to get rid of all the knots and kinks leaving a lovely tensioned warp. The polyester thread is strong enough to handle it. I rarely have a break...breaks occur usually occur intentionally...when my patience is low and a knot or tangle cannot be untangled.

I have one of my favorite bricks weighing the thread down and keeping the threads from shifting. From the brick the threads go up and over the trapeze and over a chair at the end of the living room with the small copper candle sticks at the bottom. To give you some perspective, that crossbeam in our living room at 11 feet high. And yes, I had to climb up the ladder to throw the warp over the trapeze.

I am also using one of my favorite C clamps to attach the two popsicle sticks onto the loom. [I use these clamps all the time. Since they have the top bar - they are great to warp up a quick scarf between the two clamps. On short scarves I never use a cross - too much trouble. However, here on a 5-6 yard long piece a cross is essential. Between the popsicle sticks is my cross...wound in sets of two. I insert it while on the warping board and tape it closed. The clamp keeps it snug so I do not have to hold it. Remember, I only had three cones of mint green vs. four. If I had had four I would have wound on with all four and had four threads in each cross so they could go easily into the dent then split up into the heddles. What is pictured is 265 ends.

For winding on the color gradations in my warp, I created a warping paddle specifically for my four cones of warp. It consisted of four straws cut down to about four inches long. I taped them together. Each warp thread went from the cone rack through the straw and then onto the warping board. This is the best design of a warping paddle - at least for me. It is small and easily navigates along the rods on the warping board. I can hold it like a piece of chalk and by using what feels like a natural writing motion - the hand remains level and the thread goes on without twisting. Plus, it warps up the stuff real and no tangles...great.

By the end of day one, I had about 600 ends onto the loom, all graduations of the color change except for the 100% turquoise. I alternated between winding on warp, threading the heddles and doing some mad cat/stretching dog poses. The back was a bit sore during the work but not too bad afterwards.

Back to work...

ps Bonnie - I will take a picture of my weft...and discuss it later this week.


Katherine said...

Very cool. I've seen Charlene's trapeze, I really need to get a warp on my new Baby Wolf and get back to weaving. I'm thinking something thicker and easier for the first warp--towels or something. But then I have several cones of 2/28 silk from Colourmart that I want to play with. My plan is to use them as warp with handspun silk as weft.

I have something to prove. My stepmother gave me a commercial rayon stole a couple of years ago saying that I couldn't spin or weave anything that fine myself--so I have to prove her wrong.

Need to get cracking if I want to give it to her for Christmas!

Merna said...

Fascinating! I've read about warping with a trapeze, but not seen it. That uncovered brick is scary though -- isn't it a bit rough on your warp?

I'm winding a linen warp today, if I can just decide on how wide to make it.