Saturday, 26 January 2013

Spa Weekend

This weekend is 'Spa weekend' and, in addition to Ruth and Anne (my daughters) and myself, Charlotte is coming and it is her 21st birthday as well.

Two friends came round on Friday morning and helped me dig the car out of its snow drift. We had to dig the path to the gate out as well as the pavement.  Then we packed the car. Why you might ask do I need two 12-shaft looms, a warping frame, four large bags full of yarn of various sorts and innumerable boxes full of cotton. The answer is that the first day of the Guild is Sunday and I am going there straight from the spa which is at Ashby dela Zouche.

But to return to Friday. I managed to get the warp on the 12 shaft Meyer loom, tie it on, correct errors (only two) and weave a bit. I am not very happy about this loom. The newest problem is that the distance between the breast beam and the first shaft is very short so there is not much space to work. I can't use my standard Bluster Bay shuttles but used a very small one from Bluster Bay and a Leclerc which is quite low. But there is a serious problem with the tension. If  you rachet up the tension as much as possible, then the lifted threads are worryingly tight while the unlifted threads are very slack so the shed does not clear well. I am using 16/2 cotton. If I was using a thicker yarn  then it might be okay but, as it is, I have to clear the shed manually at every throw.

There is not much more I can do about this loom. The Guild weaving class is going to weave on it , or five of them are. The old clanky 12 shaft which belongs to the Guild is similarly warped up and is fine so all I can do is offer the students, who were down for the Meyer, an opportunity to weave on the other one.

The colour combination of the first draft for the four colour double weave is good, a warp of airforce blue and apricot and a weft of yellow and green.

And now to the Spa. I have already taken lots of unaccustomed exercise and have a full programme today. Something about this place I had forgotten is the number of showers you have to take. At the end of the weekend, you feel awfully clean!!!

The spa provided a cake for Charlotte last night and we had a good wine with the dinner. Though I did feel that fruit cake with marzipan and royal icing was not appropriate at a spa!

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About Me

I am weaver and - -. I dye my yarns with acid dyes, I paint my warps, put fabric collages and stencils on my weaving. I have three looms, a 12 inch wide, 12 shaft Meyer for demos and courses, a 30 inch Louet Kombo which is nominally portable but has a stand, two extra beams and a home-made device containing a fan reed. And last a 32 shaft Louet Megado which is computer controlled, has a sectional warp and a second warp beam and I am the proud owner of an AVL warping wheel which I love to bits and started by drilling holes in. I inserted a device for putting a cross in. I have just acquired an inkle loom and had a lesson from an expert so I can watch TV and weave at the same time. I am interested in weaving with silk mostly 60/2 although I do quite a bit with 90/2 silk. I also count myself as a bookbinder with a special interest in Coptic binding.