Saturday, March 14, 2015

Kira's Shawl and some leg wraps

My second Queens Shawl weaving project was to be presented to HRM Kira at Pennsic last year.  The weft was hand spun by members of the spinning guild, and I wove the finished piece in a herringbone variant using Brown Sheep's Nature Spun sport at the warp.

Overall I am very pleased with how the finished shawl turned out.  It could have been a little longer and maybe a touch wider, but that's pretty knit-picky.  There were some interesting variations in the hand spun weft skeins that I tried to spread out through the shawl to create subtle textural stripes.  I think this worked out pretty well, there are no wide runs of any one skein so the finished cloth is fairly consistent and even.  It's also quite soft and warm.  Working with the thicker yarn this time around did produce a heavier shawl but it still has a nice drape.

I love the way the white and purple combined together.  By itself the purple was really bright.  When woven together with the white. it toned down quite a bit, resulting in some nice depth of color and just enough shimmer to stand out when HRM wears it.

I also wove some leg wraps for my early period/iron age kit.  The original plan had been to do this on my warp weighted loom, however I discovered that the alpaca/wool blend I was using as warp was far to stretchy to stand up to this week.  Also the very narrow strips were difficult to stabilize on the loom so I moved the project over to my table loom.

Just for future reference, I do NOT recommend moving warp from one loom to another mid-project.  I got it to work out but it was sloppiest warping job I have ever seen.  I think I set this as something around 36 EPI, maybe a little looser, but I was working with a lace weight warp so it's fairly tight.  The west is Nature Spun fingering, which I love and gives a very nice pack at a surprising rage of sets.

The finished wraps feel amazing!  They are soft, light, warm, and the cloth has a beautiful hand.  It would make a lovely garment.  They took forever to weave, each wrap is 15 feet long, but the end result was worth the effort.  I'm looking forward to doing more cloth in fine wools, it's such a joy to work with and the results are worth the extra effort to warp up all of the threads.

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