Monday, August 3, 2009

Double Width Blanket


While I wasn't terribly fond of the colors to start with, I am pleasantly surprised at how much I like this blanket. I certainly enjoyed weaving it and look forward to putting more on Hey Baby soon. The size of the bed is queen and while I haven't measured yet, I didn't lose that much width or length after washing. I had no written plan for the stripes, since they weren't planned until I realized the yarn I had wasn't going to finish the blanket. In spite of my non-existent planning they came out pretty uniform.

I learned an awful lot about both double weave and my new loom. I'm not satisfied with my fold. Even with the fishing line added per a Handwoven article on doing double wide blankets, the fold area is crammed. It's flanked by the two thin pink stripes in the warp.
On the next blanket I will be watching and making adjustments to how I weave. The most important may be using an end feed shuttle. This dk/worsted yarn I used was too thick for the EFS to be efficient. The blankets coming up are all in Harrisville Shetland weight wool. I was lucky that I have a very generous shed on this loom. There was no need for mirrors and such to weave. Not once did I catch the wrong layer weaving if I was treadling properly. Unweaving on double weave is a pain. It's important to make your throws in the direction stated since you have a closed and open end. I added arrows to the treadling cheat sheet so if I wasn't throwing in the correct direction I would know I had gotten off track pretty quickly. I could and should have adjusted the loom for a higher tension. The Louet Delta and Spring both have a floating breast beam and it needs to be adjusted at the get go allowing for the same tension with each advance. I love the feature and will only get better on setting everything up as I weave more projects on her. When I do twill again I will plan on doing the selvage edges in basket weave. My selvages really aren't bad and I didn't use a floating one on the blanket, but they could be better. There is always room for improvement when it comes to those for me!

The blanket isn't perfect but it is certainly nice enough to be used and enjoyed and not just by the dogs! The final finish for this blanket will be some pretty fabric binding for the hemmed ends. I like the look and I also think it might wear better in the long run.
I did something a little different after the discussion on hemming over at Life Looms Large. I wove an extra half inch or so of hem length and secured my ends by using a serger stitch about a half inch in from the raw edge. It gave a good width of fabric for the foot to travel over and it was easy to trim the raw edge down close to the stitching. I just got my wonderful sewing machine back after 3 weeks at the spa for a good cleaning and adjusting. I won't tell you how long it's been since someone professional worked on her . It's just embarrassing!

Hey Baby's next project will be that orange rump rug. I'm starting to plan the warp but I need to go out and take a few measurements of the horse saddled up. This will be a plain tabby weave, single layer.

The rough framing is all complete for the windows and it looks like Tuesday is the day for lifting help to put those windows up. There will be a lot of painting work once the trim is done, both inside and out. At least these windows are low and easy to reach with a 4 foot ladder!

8 comments:

  1. A tip I learned was if you have cramming at the fold, then plan for it- add an extra thread or two, then gently remove them after you cut the piece off the loom. Then wet finish, and brush with a soft hairbrush while still damp. The remaining fibers will find their place, and it wont look crammed. Works, I promise.
    Kimmen

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  2. Love your blanket!!!!!! So much nicer than my white ones. I had problems with the fold also. I Read somewhere to add a fishing line and use it as a floating selvage then pull it out when finished. Not a good idea at least for me. I like Kimmen's idea.

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  3. I did do the fishing line and maybe I just didn't have enough weight on it to work as well as it should.

    Kimmen, I'll give it a whirl with the extra threads. I wonder if there would be any benefit to having them a bright color so removal would be easier. Will wool grab too much?

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  4. It's beautiful! I'm so glad that you did it without a plan also. That makes it just expressive. Look forward to the orange!

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  5. Theresa, your blanket is wonderful!!! If you do put in an extra thread or two at the fold be sure to use something smooth, like perle cotton or such so it pulls out easily. I've found paying close attention to my draw-in on the fold edge has taken care of it being crammed. You should be proud of your blanket!

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  6. I gave you an award today - you can pick it up next time you visit my blog.

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  7. Thank you Cindie,bspinner, Jennifer and Sharon for all your kind praise.

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  8. Wow - just wow! It looks great!!!

    That's surprising that you didn't plan out the stripes. They did come out very uniform looking. They look great!

    Seeing the blanket in the photo, the fold looks really good honestly. The closeup shows that it's a little densely packed in that area. I've heard several weavers suggest leaving a few empty spaces in the reed around the fold. Don't know if you've tried that. (I've heard many weavers say they can never get their folds just right.)

    That floating breast beam on the loom sounds interesting. Anything to help with even tension!!

    Blanket hems.....now there's something to contemplate!

    Good luck with the windows today!!!

    Fabulous blanket project!! Thanks for sharing the details!

    Sue

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