Post #3078: More on learning to weave

I anticipate a lot of weaving in my near future. Not only that, I anticipate a lot more methodical approaches, experiments and fine-tuning of my skills – because I think that I might actually be heading towards a solid base of knowledge at this point. That is after a year of having a loom in operation in my home – the J-Made that I set up last November.

I’ve just taken the first weave off Middle-C and am pleased with the results:

I didn’t really do much math on this project, and so it turned out to be a bit short for a wrap – I mean – it works, but it’s not as long as I had hoped. I have another ball of the striped yarn in reds and oranges and enough charcoal weft to do this project again and so I think I’m going to make the next version narrower and wider to be more of a scarf than a wrap. That will be the next project on Middle-C before I put on ten yards of warp for tea towels.

Using my newfound knowledge of back-to-front warping which I employed for the first time in this most recent project – I am in the process of warping Big-A for twill tea towels in sage green and white. To facilitate the pre-sleying of the reed (so I don’t have to use a raddle) – I made two sets of reed holders on the weekend:

Obviously a very simple thing to make – but a set of these retail for $30 US! I made two sets for $8 Cdn and about 30 minutes of work cutting the pieces and gluing them to the correct width. I am pretty excited about these because propping my reed up between two sets of coffee mugs last time was not optimal – and this solves a lot of problems.

I’m also moving to a live-weight tension braking system on Big-A because the brake-band that the former owners jerry-rigged did not hold during my first weave and I ended up hanging a weighted milk jug off the back of my loom to keep it going. Live weight tension means using weights hung off the back beam to create the friction needed to stop the warp from moving forward. My dad gave me two 4-pound sash weights during a weekend visit so I’ll be tying those on shortly and will take pictures when I do. Big-A is all around a great loom, but the brake problem really needs to be solved.

My goal this week is to get warps on the two main looms and weave off the tea towels that are on Little-J – which are within inches of being done. As I said – lots of weaving in the future – I look forward to sharing photos of all three looms set up at the same time!

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