I was playing around with patterns this morning, and thinking through what I want.
- 24-thread repeat in the threading, straight draw for maximum flexibility.
- 4-5 threads of every repeat must be in warp yarn #2 (to stretch my small supply of warp yarn #1).
- Vertical stripes every inch or half-inch, to make me look taller/thinner
- Floats of no more than 4 warp threads (because this is being used as outerwear).
After some fiddling, I came up with this:
Explaining my reasoning behind this pattern a bit more:
- Using a warp-dominant twill in the stripes of lighter color pops out the red stripes from a black background
- Using a weft-dominant twill in the background provides a black background. I want black to dominate in the fabric, toning down the red and keeping the coat from looking garish. I also think it is easier to make out colored patterns against a black background than to make out black patterns against a colored background. The eye is drawn to color, so naturally looks at the red first.
It also results in fewer shafts being lifted, which is easier to weave.
Using a twill background also ensures that the floats will be short.
- I wanted to try motifs that were symmetrical and equal in height and width. I felt just using diamonds didn’t provide enough visual interest, so I added a more circular pattern alternating with the diamonds. Then I felt the shapes clashed, so I altered the circles to be more diamond-shaped.
- I made the twill lines reversing because I like the look of herringbone weaves, and I think they will also make me look taller.
- I put red in the warp and black in the weft because silk is shiny and cashmere is matte: shiny red silk will practically glow against a matte black cashmere background.
This pattern pleases me, but I want to try more! Still on the slate to try are:
- simple geometric shapes in 1/3 against 3/1 twill
- Organic lines/patterns a la network drafting
- anything else I can think up
The advantage to threading up straight draw on 24 shafts, with a 24-thread repeat, is that I can control each warp thread in the repeat separately and can therefore weave just about anything, provided it repeats every 24 threads.
I would be happy sampling just with these colors/pattern, but will probably work up a lot more drafts before settling on something. This is because I’m leaving on an 11-day trip to visit relatives (mine and Mike’s) on Sunday and won’t have access to the loom or my yarns, so playing on the computer is all I can do (well, besides catching up on John Varley novels, and knitting socks).
Speaking of which, this blog will go on semi-hiatus starting Sunday, as I’m not sure when I’ll have Internet access.