Saturday, February 21, 2009

Bugs in Silk

I finished my sampling of a 20/2 silk warp in taquete so I can now start weaving. Here is the first beetle. There will be six different beetle species in a mixture of blue, light blue, yellow and orange. The background, beetle and fringe will vary by section. It's a silk bug sampler scarf.

Before I started I had asked a number of folks what sett they thought I should use to get a real nice drape for a scarf with 20/2 silk in a summer/winter or taquete technique. I got numbers from 18 to 40 epi. "It depends." When I asked on the weavetech list the recommendation was 2/3rd of a twill set-up. ie. 22-28epi. Since I make less mistakes sleying if I use a multiple of 4 or 2 I decided to go with my 12 dent reed and a 24 sett for my sample.

I played around with a variety of 20/2 silk colors for the pattern and tabby weft and didn't really like any of them. My original selection of colors was thrown out quickly. I got out my 60/2 silk which I have never woven with and tried that in combination with 20/2. Then I did some with only 60/2 silk. I took the sample off - threw it in the washing machine and dryer to see how it would wet finish and ironed the puppy. The best feel was the part using 60/2 silk for both the pattern and tabby weft. It was really soft with a lovely drape. So much softer than anything I have woven before. The parts with the 20/2 weft had that heavier stiffer feel which was not what I wanted. The 24epi sett may be a bit too loose I am not quite does tighen up in the finishing process. I decided to try this set up for one scarf. I have warped enough for two.

So now all I have to do is tweak a few beetle patterns from my extensive collection and weave away.

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