Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Jacquard Samples Finished

After a couple of days spent on other tasks (among 'em, driving to the new house to be present for house inspection and pest inspection), I've now had a chance to serge the edges of my two samples, then wash and press them.

The first sample is woven in shaded 8-end satins (1/7, 2/6, etc. through 7/1) to give 7 shades of grey. The cloth was actually woven with lime green tencel weft on a black cotton warp, so I guess it's more accurate to call it 7 shades of green... This is a scan of the actual cloth, so if you click the image to display a larger version, you should be able to see each thread.

The second sample is woven in a 4-color samitum, a structure I'd never woven before and didn't really know anything about. Now that I see how much color blending you get from 4 weft colors, I think that will change!

Four-color samitum allows you to define areas as follows:

- Any one of the wefts on top, the others underneath (1 up, 2 up, 3 up, 4 up)
- Any two of the wefts on top, the others underneath (1+2, 1+3, 1+4, 2+3, 2+4, 3+4)
- Any three of the wefts on top, the other underneath (123, 124, 234, 134)
- All 4 wefts on top, warp floating underneath, appropriate only for small areas

This means that with 4 weft colors you have 15 possible color combinations! Except for the first set of combinations, it's a weft-faced weave. With the first set, the warp shows through for 3 out of 4 picks to make a warp-faced weave.

I had wefts in white, light green, med blue, and dark green, and defined the following color combinations:

1. white and light green up
2. white and med blue up
3. light green and med blue up
4. light green and dark green up
5. only dark green up, so the black warp shows through

The wefts of my samitum sample packed in way more than expected, so the design really got squashed vertically. That made it pretty unreadable - take it from me, it was an image of leaves, even if they don't look like it!

Normally, one would weave a sample this size, determine how far off the aspect ratio is from square, and resize the image proportionally in Photoshop. In my case, I would have stretched the image vertically, let Photoshop do its thing with the weave structure, and then I'd take the image back to the loom driver.

Please keep in mind that there are several weaving errors in there that I can only blame on myself, not the loom. I don't do well in a class environment with lots of distractions and interruptions. The 4-color weft rotation went awry in a couple of places (okay, I can't count to four without screwing it up!) so the colors are weird. And if you could see the selvedges, you'd think I was a brand new weaver holding a shuttle for the very first time. Ick. This is why God made 4-box fly shuttle beaters... and quiet studios in which to concentrate...

But you can see the areas of the different color combinations clearly, even if they don't add up to a readable graphic design, and that's the main point. With the right aspect ratio, and the right color rotation, these would be leaves, dammit!!!


Peg in South Carolina said...

Very nice. I'm sure you learned a ton. I am playing with some 8-block on 4-shafts crackle treadled as S&W and using various 4-color rotations, none of which is the same color as the warp. It is really fascinating and I am sorry I am coming to the end of my sampling!

Beryl said...

These are early days. Don't be too hard on yourself about a few color snafoos. I think I see a pretty new jacquard with a four box flyshuttle in your future studio:-)