So plain weave is all very well, but…
Having finally tried out a peg plan for gradually exchanging layers, I really wanted to change it from plain weave to a twill. This, of course, takes twice as many lags and pegs, not to mention a bit of extra thinking. Fortunately, I quite like sitting down near the heater while my studio warms up!
The first eight lifts are easy. Twill in both layers; lift top layer out of the way to weave the bottom layer. Sorted.
I had originally planned the layer exchange on the basis of a straight draw in both layers. I wanted a randomish appearance so I had switched the shafts in a satin order rather than trading first 1 then 2 then 3 etc. Anyway, the first pair to be switched are 8 and 16: wherever I lift 8 in the first plan, in the second plan I want to lift 16 instead, and vice versa.
So far so good. I must admit, though, it gets pretty wild and hairy in the middle. I found that the simplest way to handle it was to use the shaft shuffler in Fiberworks to exchange the shafts at each stage, then I could just do the same straightforward liftplan each time — while the earlier ones get more and more mixed up. At the end I moved all the shafts back again to correspond with my threading. However, I’m never convinced by such tricks unless I can also get out a pencil and paper and check that I know what I’m doing! It is quite satisfying to pick out the pegs which are making pattern and confirm that they are indeed weaving a twill.
And quite unnerving when you have horrible skips and have to work out why.
I was relieved that this turned out to be a simple peg-in-the-wrong-hole problem and not a wrong-hole-in-the-plan problem. On this advancing threading, the exchanges are not the gradation I had originally intended, but I am really liking these blocky shapes.
I like the shades of grey too, though they do look a bit alien on my blog and FB page amidst all the colour. The cotton I am using at the moment was only ever intended for sampling, and I had planned to go on to sampling in silk but stay with the greys. However, I am now thinking that all silk would be more glossy than I really want, and a mix of silk and something would better capture the texture that I’m after. Tricky to say for sure though, as I am headed off on a definite tangent. Only one solution: more sampling!
Yesterday I cut off the plain weave piece to finish. After handling it, I decided that some stitchers would be in order if I’m going to weave each block for any length. So the last thing I did today was to start adding them. Just one stitched end per eight-lag block so far. I will see how that behaves before I get carried away.