Sunday, August 15, 2010
A Good Bath
It sucks when you work on a project and the whole time you feel it's a disaster. Such was my experience weaving my second project - an undulating twill blanket. The yarn choice, pattern choice and sett were not "in sympatico" so I had lots of slippage. It was a rookie mistake. I powered through with some coaching from the amazing Jane Stafford who gave me some advice. The best advice she gave was to reserve judgement until the finished cloth hit the water. "A good bath often turns an ugly duckling into a swan," she counselled. She was right.
Here is the finished blanket. It was designed to act like a runner on a leather chair in our living room. Colours were chartreuse and taupe. The pattern I chose was an undulating twill which has long floats. The yarn was a silk-superwash merino blend which I thought would wear well. However, it makes it more slippery and less forgiving when it comes to fluffing up during washing to stabilize it.
When I found big gaps in my sample weaving because the yarn slipped around I panicked and e mailed Jane. She recommended a pick of plain weave 100% wool (very fine) between the picks of twill to stabilize it. Here on the close up you can see the wool picks and it certainly did the trick! The final blanket was more than 5 feet long so I was very glad to finish it off.
I washed it in warm water with Soak soap and spun it dry This was my first time using a floating selvedge and I love the way it makes everything so neat and tidy.
It looks great on the chair and I'm still amazed at how a little bath saved the day.