Sunday, July 12, 2009

Rugs are finished!

My plan to write about spinning sock yarn on the Tour de Fleece has been preempted by a major development in my studio: today, I cut off the two runners I was weaving from my loom. I also finished them, tying the tassels and finally placing them where they need to go. This is my first weaving project, if you don’t count a long sampler I did investigating twill. I would call it my first “real” project as I made something. The rugs were woven out of necessity, because my store bought ones were worn out and are ready for the trash. It didn’t make sense to spend a couple of hundred dollars on commercial rugs, when I could use that money toward weaving supplies and enjoy making my own.
You can see them pictured above in a place of honor at the entrance of my house. They have a few flaws, and I will need to ask more experienced weavers what has caused them and how to avoid them in the future. I kind of jumped into it with no real idea what I was doing—learning by doing is what it was. My friend Beth put me in contact with a rug weaver, Nanette, and she was able to help me quite a bit via e-mail. As serendipity would have it, I just happened to buy 8/5 linen warp, which is what she uses, so her help was very useful. The whole project required lots of yarn—so I was spinning up a storm. Rug weaving is wonderful for stash reduction—what you see represents 7 fleeces worth of yarn all spun as four-ply.
What’s next in weaving? I still need to finish winding on the warp on that 20 inch loom I bought.

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