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Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Warp Pile suppositions, and what I did, not on my holidays but when I was working like a driven thing and not getting much rest

I spent a long time trying to figure out in my head how warp pile cloth was constructed. I knew that there were two warps, one for the ground fabric, and the second for the pile. This can be seen by pulling on a single loop in a towel. Eventually I came to a kind of idea of how this kind of fabric was woven.

It turns out I was correct. I couldn't think of any other way it could be done.

"To produce the pile a wire is inserted across the width of the warp into a shed formed only by the pile ends. When the pile ends are subsequently dropped into the bottom shed and interlaced with the weft they remain draped over the wires as shown at ..... (snip) ... Thus, the cross-sectional dimensions of the wire determine the height of the pile. After the insertion of a number of picks (and wires) the wire furthest away from the cloth fell is withdrawn leaving the loops which were formed over its shank as a surface feature in the cloth..."
     - Watson, "Advanced Textile Design: Compound Woven Structures" 4th Ed, p 287

Well, that's one way of making a warp pile anyway. One which I have the technology available to make use of. I'm sure I can find a few reasonably straight bits of wire in a scrapheap somewhere.

In other news, I am 17 hours away from my deadline for this semester and completely relaxed, having just watched Amir Khan lose a fight to Lamont Peterson with something of a lack of dignity. Nothing like losing a fight and blaming the referee. Classy.

I have yet to do:

Put my sketchbook together
Put my journal together (it's all over the place, and here as well)
Put my research file together, including retroactively making copies of many of the pages in the books I have been reading to inform me on classical men's style. The blogs I'll give up on, they're too transitory.
 Complete some small writing tasks
Label everything for the colour through practice project

Which consists of

6 pages of development samples (about 48 colour samples and 3 silk samples)
14 Final samples (all doublecloth in varying colour combinations and twill combinations)
6 Experimental samples (resleyed the doublecloth warp for single cloth and wove with both double and single-cloth in the same fabric)
3 books of collage colour combinations
1 sketchbook culled from 3 locations
1 journal culled from my main journal I used during the summer, my notebook in which I write down my random notes and do all my sums and this here blog
1 research file which is almost nonexistent right now
1 customer profile which is completely nonexistent

And for the Techniques module, which doesn't have as much. It consisted of a series of tests in which we were given a description of a fabric, ie

tight-warp stitched doublecloth with both faces in 2/2 twill and the front face in 2/30's cotton and the back face in 2/12's cotton

Then you figure out the weave plan, sleying, draft and peg plan

Also we had one test to do on calculating setts using various setting theorists. All of which seem to base their calculations on a number which is simply given to you without telling you how this number is calculated. For instance in Ashenhurst, to work out the Yarn value, you need the value for K. What is K? in the instance of cotton, K = 0.92 (if i remember correctly)

How is this derived? If i do not know how a variable in an equation is derived I cannot have any faith in the equation. This is a number that could have been (and probably was, knowing this bloody industry) derived at over 100 years ago, in which time manufacturing techniques, production standards and fabric qualities have all changed (not a lot, but somewhat). So is that the correct value? Who knows? Not I. At the end of the day half of my mind still runs along the method of "look at the yarn, screw your eyes up, say 'ooooh, 32? 36? call it 34epi'"

Hardly scientific. And they all have these problem it seems. One variable which is a mystery number whose origin is unknown.

There may be an answer to this question. I intend to find out. This is an industry that seems bereft of simple standardisation. I see no benefit to using multiple counting systems for different fibres. I see no benefit to using imperial units (yes, I still think in inches and feet, I'm trying to train myself out of it)

Anyway, where was I before I started frothing at the mouth?

Ah yes

Aside from that I have to produce two double cloths (not an issue, I just took the 2 worst looking samples from the Final warp that happened to be technically sound) and two figuring cloths (which were both crap)

And then I have to label everything.

Agh.

After this I have about 10 glorious days of doing whatever I like. My options are

1: Weaving rugs on my brand new but rather old Dryad Upright Loom. I have a whole rake of Axminster Rug Wool I foolishly purchased when I thought I was rich
2: Weave Cashmere scarves, taking the oppurtunity to learn about the use of doup-wires to weave multiple scarves on a width seperated while keeping the edges tight
3: Attempt to weave warp pile through the wire technique outlined above, as I happen to have a rather substantial warp just sitting there due to my not having the time to weave it (deep, deep shame) and it's very colourful and pretty too and it's make a lovely thing
4: Spend time with the nice people I like to spend time with, who make me happy
5: Do bugger all

I reckon I can easily find time for the last 2, but I can only do one of those weaving tasks, because I'm not completely bloody mental

Oh, and I have to tidy up around my loom.

Y'all can vote on which weaving task I do. I may very well ignore you. I'm already inclined toward warp pile as I have an idea in my head of how gorgeous it'll be (viscose feels niiiiiice) but I could be swayed towards cashmere or woollen rugs.

Andrew