Monday, March 6, 2017

MacQueen Tartan on the Weaver's Delight and Other Towels

My association with the MacQueen tartan is through my Grandpa Howard Sluyter's mother, Mary Jane MacQueen, her father, John MacQueen and his father, Hugh MacQueen.

For my 2016 towels given to my girls and my dad in December, I decided to put this tartan on my Weaver's Delight rug loom. At the time, I was teaching different ways to warp looms and also how to warp stripes. The Weaver's Delight has a sectional beam, so I decided the easiest way to do the stripes was to wind each section on the warping board, since no section was going to be repeated.

As the sections were filled, I taped the thread ends to maintain the order for threading.
 I counted out my heddles for a section and then taped that bundle of threads to my beater and carefully removed the tape maintaining the order.
Threading goes pretty quickly, since there were only about 50 warp ends per section.
Partially threaded as seen from the back of the loom.
A rod was inserted in the lashing cords and then the warp was tied to the rod. I spread the warp at the beginning with a few picks of black. I weave two or three picks before beating and then beat until they all come together. If there are still "v's" showing, I will do it again.  Six picks is usually sufficient to spread the warp and eliminate any separation between warp threads.
I wanted to take my first towel off before finishing the rest of the warp.  I wove a small section after my towel, put some Tacky Glue on that 1" section and let it dry.  After drying, I was able to insert two sticks into the next two sheds and then cut off the first towel at the glued section. I then tied onto the first stick in several places and was able to continue weaving.
The first towel looks very pretty on my dining room table.
I wove enough towels so my dad, three daughters, and I could all have one.
I believe I already showed this six-shaft towel that I gave to my daughter-in-law Rebecca. It was woven on a counterbalance loom and is a six-shaft pattern that I found on
 Wet finished and hemmed.
Except for this towel, which I kept for myself, I didn't get photos of the Cajun Inspired Towels I did in this colorway.
This pattern was a Tom Knisley design and was in Handwoven, Jan/Feb 2015, page 67. Refer to the magazine for the full instructions.

I gave the plaid one I wove (no photo) to my daughter-in-law Jenn this past December.
The plaid is pictured in a screenshot from my Fiberworks program and shows the slightly confusing threading from the pattern in the magazine.  Note the four threads periodically threaded on the same shaft but in different heddles.

The weaving also has four weft passes in one shed, so it is necessary to wrap around the outer warp threads. I didn't use a floating selvedge. The four passes in the shed leave ridges, giving the towel some texture.

I substituted orange for the red and dark brown for the white.