Sample This

The next step in the towel project was to roll on the warp threads and tie them to the front beam. I love how fresh and clean a new warp looks. So many possibilities, so much potential. In a first for me, I decided to weave a few inches with five different weft threads, cut the sample off the loom, wash it, dry it, and see what worked and what didn't.

The warp is brown 3/2 organic cotton (unmercerized). From bottom to top, the weft threads are: (the pink threads on the very bottom are waste yarn)

  • 1) teal 8/2 cotton;
  • 2) softball color-grown cotton (about a 2/2);
  • 3) pink 10/2 linen;
  • 4) brick-red cotton chenille (2500 yards/lb)
  • 5) pink 10/5 linen (about twice as thick as the 10/2).

Pre-washing, the sample is about 14" tall by 14.5" wide - with big bulges where the chenille pulled in and the 10/5 linen pushed out.

Post-laundry, it's 11.5" tall by 14" wide and the difference between the linen and chenille is dramatically reduced. (18% shrinkage. Formula: Length 1 minus length 2 = difference; difference divided by length 1 = % shrinkage. Cause I'm a math bonehead and won't remember this next time.)
My plan is to weave 3 towels, each about 30" long on the loom. One will use the brick chenille - one will have the color-grown cotton (top sample) - and the third will be the teal 5/2 cotton. I'm setting the linen aside to use in another project.

I especially like three treadlings from the pattern gamp but I haven't decided whether I'll do one pattern per towel or a combination. Guess I'll let serendipity (and my interest/boredom level) decide.