Lizards in the Leaves

Rustlings in the green....imagination, art, whimsy

Oct 13, 2006

Rigid Heddle Weaving

I am so behind in taking pictures and posting public thank yous and going on and on about the fiber madness in my life! I'm afraid to say that I'm planning to play catch-up this weekend, because, alas, for me grand plans and noble resolutions and lovely new leaves always seem to go awry, dissolve, decay. And then what am I left with? Nothing done and a big, nasty effluvient pool of guilt. I so hate swimming in that pool...

So, I won't promise a thing. I will just say that this week I was busy at Riverwools,taking a KnitALong workshop (RoundTrip Jacket!) and another all-day workshop in rigid heddle loom weaving.

At the first weaving workshop, I used my 32" Kromski Harp loom -- it's a beauty, but I think it's just way too big for what I want to weave. I know for sure if I decide to keep it, I will have to buy a stand to use. Meanwhile, I went ahead and got the Ashford Weaving For Knitters loom. I thought long and hard about getting the smaller Harp, but in the end decided I would go with the Ashford.

Awful of me, but I can't quite remember exactly why I decided this, so I don't think I can be of any help to any of you who might be trying to make a similar loom purchase decision. I suspect that it might be a small superiority in the portability, and also the 7.5 dent heddle. The smallest heddle available for the Harp is 10 dent I think. I did go ahead and purchase the 10 and 12 dent heddles for the Ashford, so I have lots of possibility with this, and I've heard rumors that Ashford will be offering a 5 in the future.

So for my first project on the Ashford (yes, a scarf), I chose to use Colinette Giotto -- lovely, but so horribly expensive it begs to be woven rather than knitted with. One of the pluses of weaving is that a little expensive (or handspun) goes a much further way than knitting with it --
Giotto and a two-ply I handspun with a hand-dyed roving from Winderwood Farm. It's got a lot of variations of dark pinks and reds.
The pictures, of course, do not show the shimmery rainbow lurking in the irridescent blues of the Giotto. Nor do they show the myriad subtle combinations of all the rosy reds and pinks in the handspun. You will have to imagine them, and how they work together to create an interesting effect of texture, of undulation.

And here is the project-in-process, perhaps about 2/3 completed. I'm hoping I won't run out of the handspun:

I actually have other things in mind for rigid heddle weaving besides scarves. Please feast your eyes on this selection of artful hangings posted at Paradise Fibers. You will have to scroll down a bit as it is on the sale page for the Kromski Harp loom.

Errands whine at me, so I must bundle up and get out into the first real blustery cold of the season.


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