Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Out with the OId - In with the New

I rang out the old year finishing up some projects. The three ply grey corrie is finally done. This is for an all natural wool Faroe style cardigan. Next up will be the chocolate brown - unless I take a short break for some more colorful spinning!

I also finished the twill placemats using 4/4 cotton. Leigh asked if this was the same as Sugar and Creme. This was called Peaches and Creme but it's the same thing, the heavy cotton that people use to knit dishcloths. I got 8 placemats from one cone of ecru for the warp and about .75# of the variegated for the weft. I was very pleased with the way the washed up. They make a nice heavy mat. I've heard people say they've used this for baby blankets, but it seems a little heavy to me.

I tried several different means of reserving space for the fringe - strips of plastic grocery bags, and strips of posterboard. I was going to try some rags or doubling up the weft but ended up sticking with the bags.

I used a three-step zig zag and sewed along each side with the bags still in. Then I pulled out the strips. If I hit it with a stitch or two the plastic ripped very conveniently and pulled right out.

Placing my hands on each mat and pulling gently for tension I ran a second row of zig zag down each one. This is when I realized I should have done a few rows of tabby as a header.

I was able to use the same piece of string for each mat keeping the finished mats within 1/4" of each other. After washing they look identical.

These were sett 10 epi, 140 ends and woven to 19.5". They came off the loom at 11.5" x 17.5" and shrunk very little (less than 1/2"), which really surprised me. I will use this heavy cotton again, but the next time I am going to use a tabby header and a hem. When I weave towels I weave the turned under portion of the hem with sewing thread. For these placemats I'd use 8/2 or 8/4 to reduce some of the bulk.

New beading: I'm trying my hand at designing my next necklace. It's pewter and copper metallic seed beads.

New weaving: Boundweave! I put on a 10" wide warp of white rug warp and I'll be following along with Nancy Hoskin's video.


  1. They really came out great! I have a request for a table runner - any great suggestions to go off and do some reading for patterns?

  2. Nice placemats! I still haven't gotten back to the huck lace stoles, but every time I walk past the loom room, it calls me.....

  3. Wow...I'm impressed with the consistency in sizing of your placemats. Now you've set the bar for me to get a matched set of kitchen towels.....ouch!
    Happy New Year, you have a great start there.

  4. Very nice, Charleen -- you are motivating me to get back to my loom. Did you mean that next time you wouldn't use the Sugar and Cream at all? Or are you talking about using one size for warp and one for weft? And I am eager to see your boundweave project. I just got her book and am about to buy the video.

  5. Fantastic. Peaches and Cream, I will tuck that away into my memory. I had a bad experience weaving knitting yarn awhile back. Think cardboard, that's how it felt after I took it off of the loom.

  6. Katherine7:34 AM

    Very nice--I use those plastic bands that are used to bind paper boxes, etc so they don't come open. They're wonderful as beginning headers and to separate pieces like placemats, they're stiff and exactly even in width. I got this tip from Mary of Serendipity Farm. You can get nice wide ones if you keep your eyes open.

  7. Thank you for all these details Charleen. I really like your idea of using a string to measure. I should do that with my dishtowels.