My plans for yesterday were rudely disrupted by two unfortunate circumstances: I stupidly dipped my skeins into water before weighing them for dyeing, meaning I had to let them dry out before proceeding further, and my body decided it needed a nap. A two-hour one, as it turned out, on top of ten hours the night before. I can only conclude that I was pushing myself too hard the last couple days.
So instead, I took a day of rest, spending the time puttering around in the studio, cleaning up a bit, winding skeins onto cones for later use, and so on. I did mix up a big batch of dyebath, and I attempted to mix up some stock solution, with disastrous results – accidentally spilled a batch of it all over the table, resulting in much frantic cleanup before it contaminated everything. I took that as a sign that no more dye work should be done that day, and went out for dinner with Mike.
So today I am feeling much refreshed, and ready to keep moving forward.
I am considering what to do with the rest of this warp. It is becoming plain to me that my original plan – to do some shawls – is not going to work: 60/2 silk in plainweave is really too thin to make a good shawl. Also that the silk is probably not going to collapse attractively in the ways that I want. (Though I still have some tricks in my bag…I want to try weaving horizontal stripes in an elastic yarn, mixed with longer stripes in a non-elastic yarn, to produce ruffles.) The sett for twill is so drastically different that I don’t think I can re-sley for twill, and the threading, while it produces a nice largish pattern, limits me to an 8-end repeat in the smaller pattern, so I can’t play much with those designs. (More to the point, those designs would be about 1/5″ wide, so barely visible.) I’m also not sure I like the network drafted results on this threading.
All of which is pointing the way towards rethreading, this time on a point threading. This would give me a larger design without sacrificing too much control, and would allow me to weave yardage for a future purpose (a blouse, perhaps?). But, having just spent 10+ hours preparing this threading, I am reluctant to take it all out and rethread, unless it feels really necessary. But it does feel inevitable.
An intriguing alternative to a point threading would be to rethread for a 24-shaft overshot. I have never worked with overshot at all, so this would be entirely new (and thus exciting!). I have a copy of Donna Sullivan’s Weaving Overshot: Redesigning the Tradition, which has a very interesting section on multishaft overshot. I’ve flipped through it and don’t fully understand it (yet), but my mental sniffer is yelping with delight at the possibilities suggested by the drafts in that section. It would also produce nice large designs (especially if combined with a point draw in the profile draft), and a heavier fabric than a simple plainweave, which would be good if I wanted to make a shawl.
So…that is intriguing, too.
I think what I will do for the rest of this morning is read through the book on overshot and see if I can grasp the underlying principles. Once I have that in hand, I can decide whether or not I want to go that route, and an appropriate direction if I do. Tonight I will make another attempt to mix up stock solutions – hopefully not disastrous, this time!