It’s been a while since I posted about freeform techniques, but I haven’t forgotten about them. I had a chance to play around at the end of a couple of warps, and now I finally have a warp on the Megado which is dedicated to using freeform echo weave to interpret data about Arctic ice loss. Yes, there’s quite a lot in that sentence, but I won’t unpack it now. I just want to share some quick photos before 2017 makes its getaway.
The warp is a mix of cotton and silk yarns from my stash (along with a sparkly thing I found there as well).
I haven’t got two distinctly different layers, but I am using a parallel threading to get the greater warp density.
I have two different liftplans: one for ‘ice’ which is warp-faced and angular, and one for ‘water’ which is weft-faced and a little more curved. To keep things as simple as possible, I am weaving ‘water’ on the right and ‘ice’ on the left, so there is only one shed change per pick. The first pick goes from right to left, so the first two lags are pegged (1) water pick one (2) ice pick one. The second goes from left to right, so the next two lags are (3) ice pick two (4) water pick two. And so on. This minimises the amount of thinking I need to do about the actual lifts, so I can concentrate on the freeform element.
Nonetheless, when I started the weaving, on the Friday before Christmas, I made every kind of mistake and then some. I wove an inch. I unwove an inch. I wove two inches. I unwove an inch and a half. I wove the same inch three times and it still wasn’t right. And can I just mention that unweaving freeform is the stuff of weavers’ nightmares? I left the loom and went to a Christmas party instead.
After almost a week of cooking and feasting, I finally got back to it yesterday and wove the first few inches straight through, no mistakes. It is amazing what difference a holiday can make!
My intention is for this to be the start of a series. Always supposing I can finish the first one…