I changed the original design for the peacock feathers to include more solid black between the feathery parts. Here’s how it came out (look at the bottom row for the best view, as the top row still has the top part of the previous version):
Contrast this with Round 1:
The new version looks much better, more feathery and less blobby.
Lillian (thanks Lillian!) made an excellent point when she said that the back side would not be the reverse of the front side, hence (possibly) not suitable for a shawl. (I am pretty sure the drape will be OK, as the four-weft taquete came out very fluid.) I’m still turning over various possibilities for lining the shawl – the main problem being how to attach the two fabrics together without losing the drape or spending 40 hours catchstitching them together – but it seems unlikely to succeed, at least for now.
(Those of you jumping up and down, waving your hands excitedly, and saying, “Stitched double weave!” are quite correct – that would give me one layer of plainweave to hide the bottom layer of the taquete, and I could then decorate the plainweave, if desired, using surface design techniques. The only small problem is that I’d have to resley at double the sett, since it is a doubleweave, which in turn means re-beaming, re-threading, re-sleying, oh, heck, just do a different warp. (Not to mention, six shuttles!) So, I may try this at some point, but not on this warp.)
This leaves me the interesting question of what to do with the fabric. The pattern is really too assertive (and too large) to use in clothing, and taquete is too delicate to use in something like cushions. A wall hanging it’s not. So it’s hard to think of what to do with the fabric, except decorative stuff like Christmas cards, and I’m not sure where peacock feathers fit into Christmas cards. I feel like I’m all dressed up with no place to go!
While I’m pondering this quandary, I received a cross-stitch sampler book in the mail yesterday. Someone (I’m afraid I don’t remember who) suggested to me that cross-stitch samplers are a great place to get design motifs, because the individual components of the sampler are so small. Indeed ’tis so, so I will probably weave up some butterflies (suitably adapted for taquete) and other small figures over the next few days as I contemplate what to do with my taquete fabric.
Meanwhile, I have just finished dyeing another set of samples, so look for Color Wheel #3 sometime soon…