Monday, February 3, 2014

First attempt at overshot

How I am loving my little table loom!  Warping still takes forever, but it's so much easier to set up a short (ish) length of something to play around with for napkins of towels to try something out.

I've decided to finally give overshot a try as the technique is similar to what I suspect was used to weave Perugia towels, the main difference being that overshot is done on a ground of tabby whereas Perugia towels are done on ground of some sort of diamond twill.  To weave the Perugia designs (or at least the geometric ones) efficiently, you can set up a series of secondary heddles using what's called ophamta weaving.  I wasn't able to do this when I did my towel as I have small eyes on my heddles, and the secondary tie ups need extended eye heddles on the main shafts to work.  What we see in the Perugia towels are bands of patterns woven over a tabby ground separated by diamond twills.  Overshot basically works the same way, but with fewer shafts.  The pattern weave is threaded into usually 4 shafts and woven on a tabby ground.  Working with 2 shuttles, you then weave the pattern using a contrasting color that floats over the tabby.  The patterns used are different, as are the fibers, but the basic principals are not at all dissimilar.

Anyway, overshot is far easier than I thought it would be!  And fun!  I'm not 100% happy with how this first pattern section turned out, I think a heaver pattern thread would look better, but for a first attempt it's much better than I thought it would be.  The ground is 10/2 pearl cotton set at 24 epi.  Nothing fancy but it will make a nice, functional towel that people will be will to use.  The blue is cottolin.   I have enough warp to do 3 good sized towels, and I plan to do all 3 with different fibers for the bands.  One will be a heaver linen, and one will be cotton.  I can do at least 2 different patterns with the threading I have as well, so that should add some additional interest to the weaving.

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