Well, I finally did what I should have done at the very beginning, and did a burnout test on the thread. Here is the result:
The burnout section is visible as a line down the center; the right side has been burned out, the left side has not.
This is pretty neat, but it also shows clearly that the polyester will be somewhat translucent, but definitely not transparent, once it is burned out. This means it won’t work as intended for this piece.
So: what now? Do I go ahead and thread all 1440 threads, then weave off something that won’t work for what I had in mind? Or do I cut my losses and take the warp off the loom so I can design something that will work?
Well, actually not that hard a decision. I don’t have any better alternatives to put on the loom, so I’m going to go with this warp, using it as a sample warp to experiment and learn whatever I can. And there is plenty to learn! Like how to use devore paste to burn out an image; how to do transfer printing polyester with disperse dyes; how to create and use silk screens to apply devore paste to fabric and disperse dyes to paper. And, um, stuff. Lots of stuff.
The last thing I’m working on this weekend is a proposal for a series of articles for Handwoven. I opened my big mouth at exactly the right (or wrong?) time, and it’s looking like I might have an opportunity to write some articles on fabric design! That would be really exciting. So I am cobbling together a more concrete proposal, basically a list of article topics and outlines, to send to Madelyn. If there’s a subject in fabric design that you’d want covered, leave me a comment; I’d like to know what interests people, and where I should start.