Warp Speed


One thing learnt very quickly is there should be no such thing as Warp SPEED when preparing a weaving project. When I was learning huck weave I decided to do 5 tea towels at once, so I had a 5 metre warp of 470 individual cotton threads, and I tangled it, badly.  So, over a week I untangled EACH THREAD one by one, stretched out along my studio floor and secured with all sorts of spreaders, bricks etc, and there was a sign on the door – DO NOT ENTER – for fear of re-tangling and incurring my wrath. I did salvage the warp and I did make the tea towels, they are a constant reminder to me about Warp Speed.

So now I take my time. I enjoy the rhythmic warping, the chaining, the dressing of the loom.

For my summer fun I have wound a 4 metre (175 threads) white Bendigo wool warp, dyed it in the chain on my outdoor sink, solar dyeing it under cling film over 2 days of hot sun. Rinsed and staying wet in the chain I was worried it would mould before it dried as the humidity hung around, so I slowly unchained it and put it back on the warping board. To my immense relief it all went very smoothly.

Now I had a plan for this warp, it was going to be multi-coloured and the weft would be plain, handspun, black suri alpaca, and I would point twill it. And it would make 2 scarves. As with many of my projects I now feel it would be more fun to weft a handspun, white alpaca/silk combo in a running twill. And perhaps one long piece of about 3.5 metres instead of 2 pieces about 1.7m each. Or perhaps one black, one white. Or perhaps one long one with a clasped weft of white/black.

Finally I wefted the entire length in black suri alpaca, cut it in half and joined with black suri alpaca, fringed the cut ends and now we have a very useful, very warm house throw.

2 responses

  1. I feel your pain. In my last warp I got over excited and made a double cross. That took a bit of untangling too (and cutting). I’m looking forward to trying a warping mill, next.

  2. Never tried a warping mill but it is ‘looming’ as I want to dress my druva floor loom for another big piece, some yardage for coat maybe. Our Guild hires out equipment so I will have a go. Thanks for the comment. Your work is amazing.