Thursday, October 30, 2014

Rosepath Rag Rugs

I realized a few days ago that I need to do some catch-up with blog posts.  I originally started this blog to keep a record of my weaving projects.  I was finding I didn't even remember a lot of them until I ran across photos as reminders.
Tina Ignell's book, Favourite Rag Rugs, has some beautiful Scandinavian rug projects.  One that especially caught my eye was the Rosepath pattern.

I started my first one using a variety of cotton and rayon fabrics from my stash.
The light blue background fabric to the rosepaths is a sheet that I dyed using the snow dye technique.  I also used the same technique for the wider light green bands.  The pink is rayon, and after using it, I would say it wasn't the best choice, since it tends to fray easily.  The turquoise and black were a gauzy cotton.
After finishing, it went to my granddaughter Peyton for her birthday.
I was quite excited about this one.  The dark mottled stripes are from a cotton printed velveteen, the tan stripes are wide wale corduroy, sewn together with the nap in opposite directions to give a varigated look to a plain color fabric. The narrow red dotted stripes were from a striped fabric.  The rosepaths were six different colors of linen fabric with a background of a light cotton.  I was very pleased with how rich it looked when completed.  I decided to keep it, and my cats really like it too.  It is great for rolling on to get tummy rubs.
Click on the photo for an enlarged view.
This is the start of a polyester doubleknit rug being made as a gift for a friend's kitchen.  The warp will probably wear out before the weft, since that type of fabric wears like iron.
Completed using black, grey, red and white.

I have one more rug on the warp to complete, but it is at a standstill, hoping I can come up with the "right" colors for another granddaughter for a bedroom rug.

Monday, October 27, 2014

First Project From My Eight Shaft Loom

After quite a bit of work to get my eight shaft loom (a copy of a Gilmore loom) completed, I finally took the first project off and finished the hemming today.

I chose the pattern Butterflies in Clover from the Sept./Oct. 2014 issue of Handwoven because is was a single shuttle weave with a fairly simple treadling.  I was able to weave four towels and a couple short dishrags from the five yard warp.  I used 8/2 cotton.  The pattern called for thinner yarn, and I think it would be better than the 8/2 because there are a few floats that are a bit longer than I care to have due to the chance of snagging the yarn.

The warp is tan.  I was looking for an antique look, and I think that color warp was just right.  I had several starts and stops and redo's before getting the treadling order straight in my head.  The first towel completed was woven with dark red.
Teal was used for the second towel. I hemmed it so the reverse side is visible. 
Navy was used for the third towel.
I wanted to use three different colors for one of the towels, so I decided to change the treadling.  This one is woven with 8/2 dark brown cotton and 22/2 cottolin in lime and orange.
The reverse side looks different with this towel also.
 This is my treadling for the brown, green and orange towel.  I separate the first and last four twill treadles with the tabby treadles in the center.  For me, it seemed to help with fewer treadling mistakes.  The tabby is not a true plain weave.  Make note of the tabby used in the hems.  Photos can be clicked to make bigger.
With just a little warp left over, I wove off the rest in medium dark green.  I like to use my samples for dishrags rather than storing them away in a box. 
My finishing process is to serge the ends of all the towels, wash in hot water with Dawn dish detergent to remove oils.  I wash again in the washer with hot water and laundry detergent, stretch both lengthwise and crosswise to remove wrinkles from spinning in the washer, and then dry on a normal temperature in the dryer.

After drying, I dampen the towels and stretch them again right before pressing with my Steam Fast steam press.  The press is a great time saver. 

I then turn the hems and steam press before stitching on the sewing machine.  After sewing, the towels get another final press.