Wednesday, April 15, 2009

On second chances and gifts in the mail [Scarf 32]

Oops, late again. This time it's because some friends invited us out for dinner and then we played games after - was gobs of fun and I don't feel the slightest bit guilty. :) Tired, yes! Guilty, no, not at all.

When I first put this warp on with the wide spacing in the reed, I envisioned weaving it with a boucle to help retain those spaces when it was washed. I got distracted by that lovely, springy green first and then by the bright, bright blue but today was boucle day. I was actually hoping to weave with a slightly different bright blue boucle but it turns out I didn't have enough - should have placed that big yarn order a little sooner, I guess! Considering that I was a blue boucle free zone, I used a neutral, light tan colour instead.

I must confess, I had some misgivings about this colour starting out. I used a very similar shade of cotton chenille on this warp palette last Fall and I wasn't very happy with the results. The chenille covered the warp almost entirely and the bright blue and green fringes looked Pretty Odd Indeed stuck on the ends of a mostly tan scarf. Not too odd, I guess, since someone bought the scarf, but let's just say it wasn't my favourite scarf of the year.

So why try the same colour again, you ask? Why indeed... mostly because it's the only shade of boucle that I had that I thought would work at all and I was really keen to see what difference the boucle made vs. the smooth cotton. I just plain wanted to try the colour again, though, in a much looser weave and with a fibre that wouldn't cover the warp so completely - the colour seemed like it ought to work and I wanted to give it another chance.

So I wound my bobbins and started weaving... and then wasn't at all sure I'd made the right choice. Fortunately Ron was home at the time and available for a consult. We both looked at the warp and scratched our heads, waffled around trying to decide... and then figured meh, what the heck? Might as well give it a shot.

It looked a bit drab next to the bright blue that was wound around the cloth beam below it but once that was covered it the colour began to grow on me. By the time I got to the end of the scarf (and the warp) I decided I quite like it. :) Hurray for experiments and second chances!

I was lazy when I wound the warp and left in a few knots, so this scarf needs some repairs before it goes into the wash. Will probably do that soon (and twist the fringes again!) 'cause I'm anxious to see how this one compares to the others when washed.

Here's the trio of scarves done on this warp:

The green one at the top is the only one that's been wet finished so far; you can see the big difference between that fabric and the blue, which has the same type of weft as the green one.

So enough about scarves already, let's talk tea towels! In fact, let's talk absolutely gorgeous jewel toned tea towels that arrive unexpectedly in the mail, 'cause that's exactly what I got today! I was sitting at the kitchen table, minding my own business,1 when Ron came in with this:

When I opened it up, this is what I found inside:

Isn't it beeeooootiful!? Those of you with sharp eyes who can read the return address on the envelope will have spied that it came from Laura Fry. Laura mentioned a couple days ago that she'd sent me a little pressie for pointing her in the direction of ArtFire -- which was totally unnecessary, of course, since all I did was give her the url. But hey, this is me not looking any gift horses in any mouths! Instead, I am looking at my georgeous new tea towel:

It's actually a much deeper purple than these pictures make it appear, with zig-zags of hot pink, blue and green warp floats on the sides (see above) and mostly blues with a few sneaky greens in the centre (see below). The weft itself has lighter and darker streaks in it which gives the fabric a really lovely variation and depth. I just love it!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Laura! Can you give us a little intel on what it's made of? I'm sure everyone reading will want to know, as will my fellow guild members when I take this to my next guild meeting and show it off with extreme smugness. It looks like a mercerized cotton warp...? What's the weft?

I should point out that this is actually the second parcel I've gotten from Laura in as many weeks. Last week I got a spanky new copy of her CD Weaver III which, owing to road trips and Easter and other goings on around here, I have not yet had a chance to play with. Hopefully I'll get a chance to do that soon!

1. Which is to say: messing about online. Probably reading blogs, so actually minding someone else's business, I guess.


Laura said...

Hi Janet,

When one has depth of inventory, one tends to be willing to share and return a favour. :)

The towels were woven last September, shortly after I started feeling better. The warp is merc. cotton, and the weft is a hand dyed silk boucle. I dubbed them loofah towels because of the texture. :D


didja like the stamps? The gal at the post office had a great time slapping them all over the envelope. They love when I go in with parcels and they are trying to use up 'old' stamps. I always stand there and wait while they slap stamps on willy nilly. :D

barbara said...

Hi Janet,
The cotton boucle that you are using, beige/light coffee color - where do you source that? I am looking for some that is the color of a light coffee. I had purchased mine from Bill & Carol Bannister - alas they have no more. If you have a source, would you share? Thanks.
Weaverly yours ......

Sue said...

I like the colors -- on both scarves! Look forward to seeing them wet finished! OXOXO Mom

Michelle said...

Each day when I look at your blog all I can say is "Yummy"!
Michelle, a weaver in WA

Janet said...

Laura: I <3 the stamps! I meant to mention them specifically when I posted 'cause they're so great. I've always loved B&W photography and always liked it best for portraits. I wish I could identify more of the folks in the portraits, though - some I know and others I can guess at but my knowledge of the important people in history is obviously woefully limited.

Michelle: thank you so much! That's the nicest thing anyone's said to me all day. :D

Mom: you will no doubt get to meet them up close and personal, probably from the other end of a fringe twister! ;)