Thursday, January 01, 2009

Towel Warp: Weaving in Progress

We're back in the mode where the beamed warp looks nicely organized and tidy.

Today I finished threading, sleying, and tying the dish towel warp onto the front apron, and managed to weave about half the first towel. The warp is 18/2 unmercerized cotton, in natural, long enough for 14 dish towels. The sett is 40 epi, 16 inches wide.

Except at the hems, the wefts will be about the same grist, some mercerized, some not. Two of the wefts are a hemp/cotton blend, the others 100% cotton. I'm shooting for a balanced weave at 40 ppi.

For the hems (1 inch each end) I'm using a 24/2 mercerized cotton, also in natural.

Here's the first towel, with a royal blue mercerized weft:

And in extreme close-up:

This a draft from On the loom, the reed marks are very evident, but those should disappear altogether in wet finishing.

For the past week or so, DH has been working on an upgrade of my computer and monitor. Here's the new setup, with a flat-screen monitor mounted in the castle, and the computer in the same position as the old one. But where the old computer was a small, flat (sometimes called pizza-box-shaped) rectangle, the new one is a configuration that's usually a vertically oriented under-the-desk computer. Mounted on the loom, it's on its side, which looks odd but works just fine. It can read a CD quite well in this orientation; the CD doesn't just fall out of the disk holder, as you might expect with a holder that puts the disk in a vertical position.

I haven't put it to the real test, which involves asking it to play streaming audio (classical music) AND drive the loom at the same time. The old computer couldn't run a virus scan and drive the loom without delaying the loom driver so badly it didn't change to the next pick when expected (i.e., when my foot pressed the "next shed" pedal), and I always had to watch out for occasional doubled picks in the same shed - that, or forego the virus scan... Stay tuned!

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