Saturday, 28 February 2009

best selvedges ever

i opened the sett on the outside of the latest batch of scarves.

it occured to me while in a state of mild inebriation last week that the reason i was getting smiles at the selvedges of my scarves was because the draw-in was causing the selvedges to have a higher end-count than the body of the fabric, and as we know this causes the fabric to smile, as i observed when i made fabrics with varying setts. so with two ends in each dent in the body i put 1 end in each dent on the outside 2 dents.

and vast improvements, although not, as you can see, to my photography. or my grammar, for that matter.
now i'm in a rush, checking my email in the chippy, but i couldn't get on at the library today or yesterday as they're down. ho hum. i've anyway finsihed the second line of scarves, and am testing out a new finishing technique on monday when the laundrette opens, i'll tell you all about it. if it works out it'll remove all the time i spend twisting ends. lovely

Sunday, 22 February 2009


So, this is the picture from ebay. i bought this shuttle, and i won't tell you how much i paid for it. it's described as "vintage", which i doubt greatly, and has a "diamond wood" mark on the bottom of it as well as the letters "USA", which gives a clue to it's origin. which is funny, because i bought it from someone in lancashire, which was one of the main areas where the textile industry of britain was concentrated, back in Ye Olde Times.

I've looked up Diamond Wood on the internet, and apparently it comes from China and is really rather dense, thus earning it's name. this shuttle however apears to be made of two types of wood, making it a compound shuttle. Genghis Khan conquered half of Eurasia with the compound bow, what can i do with a compound shuttle i wonder?

Now, as you may notice, there is no pin for putting the pirn on, which you'd think would be essential. these things usually pivot on a hinge or something and are fixed in place. not here. no, it jams in at the end, there's a wax mould fitted in the end with the slot for jamming the butt of the pin into. Now, i'll have to make one. hmm, woodworking skills? i don't have many. oh well.

also, i also got a little stainless steel shuttle. after i bid for it, it occurred to me that a stainless steel shuttle might be a little too heavy, but i didn't bother thinking about it too much. anyway, i got it, and it's 3 inches long. it is soo cute. i'm going to hang it on a cord and wear it round my neck like a christian would a cross.

i don't have my camera with me today, so i can't show you.

this is also a good time to point out that i have been buying up used shuttles, mostly end-feed shuttles from old mills. I shall be restoring these and selling them. I have been developing also a line of scarves that i can sell at a reasonable price to the masses. Watch this space. Watch, indeed, for the launch of Humble Woven Products, your solution for reasonably priced handwoven scarves and restored vintage end-feed shuttles.

No, really, I've bought the labels and everything. Exciting eh?

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Knotted pile


i always thought knotted pile would be really time-consuming.
and it isn't really at all. i set up a wee test warp on one of my toy looms the other day, and i made a wee thing with strip[es that wasn't that good. so then i made a 40 end warp on my table loom, and got these

aren't they nice. and it works up quite quickly as well. that's just me making diagonal stripes into a couple of wee flags. i think i've found my new Fun Thing. hooray! As it goes, Knotted pile is tied for 1st place with Pick Your Nose, and i'm doing that as well, on an occasional basis, so all is well.

i think i'll make a wider rug on the floor loom next, and see if i can make circles and curves and that. on second thoughts i should try making curves and circles on the little loom first, before i get all ambitious and buy rakes of wool.

on another note, i finished the big warp. made about 33 metres. took about 36 hours, not counting warping. which i didn't count cos it was a farce. i've now got a tent made of fabric in the corner of my front room with my bed and the heater inside it. very cosy.

now if only i had a couple hundred quid spare and a much larger house i could warp directly from cones. that would be so nice.

ho hum