Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Section 1 - Observations

I just finished what I have labelled section 1 on my Study in Black tapestry. Here is a photo of the back. The light is better in the back when it comes to viewing photos of this piece.

Observation 1: It sure seems to have taken a long time to finish such a seemingly small area with such a seemingly easy technique with seemingly few yarn changes.

This part represents the 'empty' part of space in my piece. It is about 150 square inches - a bit larger than a square foot. I feel like I have been weaving for months. I find this a bit frustrating...I understand why complex situations take a long time to weave...but this does not quite fit under the umbrella of 'complex'. Ok...there is some complexity, there is interlocking along the frame, multiple strands in the weft and the chenille issue. But still, there are only two different wefts and a multiple expanse of one color...

Observation 2: The 6 epi sett seems to suck in the warp.

The frame is doubled yarn while the space is triple chenille. I have already used a couple of balls of yarn on the frame and about 2/3rds of a cone of chenille. I figure if I can finish the empty space on the bottom with one cone of chenille, I will reserve the other cone for the top and all will work out well. I've got lots of the yarn for the frame...

Observation 3: Chenille does indeed have a 'side' or a nap.

Earlier this year, Deborah Jarchow gave a lecture on chenille to one of the Guilds I belong to. She mentioned that this type of yarn has a definite side and one must be extremely careful when weaving with it to ensure you don't end up with two very different looks in the resulting yardage. I noted this in the back of my mind and thought that if were also true on tapestry weaving it might be useful in this piece I am now working on.

I am now convinced. It does matter which way the yarn is woven and/or which way it is rolled of the cone. And it is not apparent you have done it wrong unless you have woven an inch or so. At one point, I had to re-wind my entire bobbin in order for the look to remain the same. I had initially thought since I was taking three strands of chenille and weaving with them together this issue would not occur. Not true. It happens. It makes a big difference.

Thank goodness I was using the chenille in an area where I did not have to use lots of bobbins of chenille...it would have been a nightmare to ensure everything was going the right way in order to have a uniform look.

Now that I know it happens I can consider using it in section 3 to provide a distinction between the two empty spaces.

Observation 4: Black weft and dark warp? Not a problem.

People always say it is hard to weave on dark warp. But so far I have not found it difficult to weave black yarn on my dark blue warp. I must admit, I only weave on this piece in the morning when the sun is out. It might be an issue if I wove when it was darker since the light is bad in the north studio. But is would be an issue on white warp too.

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