Doing Math While Impaired

With both looms humming right along, I have been in the throes of weaving bliss.

Lil' Miss and I have finally found our rhythm half-way into the third tea towel. Because she is smaller and lighter than the Beast, she requires different ergonomics and motion. I have to beat a little harder and use the strength of my legs and feet to keep her from sliding when I do so. The rubber feet I ordered from the Woolery are another week or so out from delivery, but once they arrive, I anticipate less movement.

Thus, after I have worked with her a while, I find certain muscles tightening, which is when I switch and move over to the larger loom.

The Beast is just a dream. As I have mentioned before, the weight of the beater does the work with very little effort from me; however, I find my arm motions in keeping the shuttle out of the way of the beam are more exaggerated than with Lil' Miss, as the beater is just BIGGER, and I use a 15" shuttle, as well.

I also find the weaving to be faster on the Beast. It may be a combination of greater familiarity and ease of beating because of the hundreds of hours I have spent with him. I am closing in on the 6th Peaceful Rhythm towel with three more to go. I anticipate in the next week or so, he will be ready to dress again for something new.

Nearing the end of a warp always triggers the excitement of a new project!

There are two contenders at the moment:

a) More tea towels!

There are two weddings we received invitations or save the dates for grown children of good friends. I know we could gift things from their registries, and we may do that, too, but I wanted to do something special for them.

One of my all-time favorite projects was a set of Ribbon Towels made in Cottolin, a blend of cotton and linen. The pattern calls for 8/2 cotton, but I substituted the Cottolin with no issues. I made these a couple of years ago and paired them with my wedding dishes:

It is a four-shaft pattern that was straight forward and a pleasure to weave. The bonus was the luxurious and substantial feel of these towels. I made four of them and gave three away. I would like to report how durable they are, but I have no idea. I have not yet used the one I kept for myself!

Cottolin is a bit more expensive than the 8/2 or 10/2 cotton I typically use, which is another reason I hold them dear. 

I was so impressed with the weight and feel of the fabric, I also have plans to make a duvet cover from Cottolin, as soon as I can get around to it. The materials were ordered and received...

Here is the color combination, I am planning to use for the next set of towels:

I will swap to yellow orange, pale green and periwinkle in the original for limette green, magenta, and peacock teal, respectively. 

The plan is to warp 13 yards for a total of 12 towels. I thought two sets of 4 would make nice gifts (and a set for me!). To make the 12 towels, I will need one extra cone of the peacock and three more of the white.

This project can go onto either of the looms.

b) A cotton rug!

The tee-shirt rag rugs I made are in constant use. The big one is underfoot in the kitchen, while the smaller one is at the back door to catch the muddy paw prints before they hit the tile. I was them a couple of times a week.

A lady on Facebook posted some Maysville Cotton Rag Warp for sale. I contacted her and bought them from her. While we were completing the sale, she sent me a picture of some Maysville Cotton Rug Filler and asked if I were interested. This is the actual photo she sent:

I had never heard of Rug Filler, and a brief search revealed it was discontinued and no longer made. I liked the colors, and she had them at a good price, so I bought them, too.

After they arrived, I really liked them.

Another search came up with six hanks of black Maysville Rug Filler on eBay for $20!

Why not, right?  Black would go with the blue and brown...

They came in with Lee Wards stickers on them for $2.18/each. They also reeked to the high heavens. 

The black ones are presently hanging on the clothes line in the shade. They have been out there since yesterday afternoon. I also sprayed them with Febreze before I went to bed last night. They reek significantly less...

While limited in my color palette, I am thinking of something along these lines:


I also came across this draft for simple Rosepath patterns that I could use.

While I need to do the math to determine whether I have enough rug filler, I would like something approximately 4 x 6 feet, which means the Beast would be called into service. At 32"wide, Lil' Miss simply is not wide enough. Further, I doubt she is heavy enough to withstand the heavy beating required of a rug.

Today and tomorrow, I am off work for some appointments. 

Unfortunately, the daylight savings time has thrown me. I have had migraines since I was 13 or 14 years old. I am fairly successful at avoiding those triggers I can, which means my migraines are limited to hormonal fluctuations. Every now and then, when my diurnal sleep rhythms are interrupted, I also experience migraines. The change in time appears to have triggered one today.

While I am happy not to be at the office with a migraine, I also hate losing a day off to one. I took an Imitrex and some Ibuprofen and decided to plow on with my plans for the day. It took me four attempts before my numbers aligned, but I was finally able to complete the math to warp the Ribbon Towels, just as I noticed my yoga pants have been pulled on inside out...

To keep track of the color changes and total number of threads, I prefer to group the threads in batches to equal the sett. If my sett is 24 threads per inch, then I group the threads into batches of 24 ends whether I am beaming sectionally or onto a plain beam.

This is essential when beaming sectionally, as I need to know how many spools of each color to use per inch. 

While it would be easier to beam a 13 yard warp onto the sectional beam, I think I want to put a rug on the Beast. Because the sectional beam for Lil' Miss has not arrived (and is not expected to arrive before May), it looks as though the tea towels will go on Lil' Miss' plain beam, which also means I will need a good bit of help with beaming. My usual rule of thumb is to plain beam lengths 10 yards or shorter and sectionally beam 10 yards or more, but I may have to bend that rule this time.

In an attempt to control the twists and knots from plain beaming 493 ends, I may break the warp into four or five different chains of ~100 threads each.

However, if the black rug filler is still too stinky to work with (I am extremely sensitive to smell), all bets may be off on the rug weaving.


Theresa said…
It's taken me forever to read this post. You've been weaving for *years* now?! I am very impressed with your work, and understand approximately half of it. ;)

And I'm sorry to hear about the migraine. :( At the clinic, they told us you can try to distract yourself out of one, but if they're too bad, that doesn't work for me. So I'm thinking you're pretty good at math, for it to not have been enough to make the pain go away! Not enough brain power required. ;)
Feisty said…
Hi Theresa!

According to my Ravelry projects, I began weaving in the fall of 2014. Thank you for the lovely comments.

What a good idea, distracting oneself from a migraine! Your comment made me laugh.

Have a lovely day and I appreciate your stopping by!

Liftplus said…
Thanks for sharing, it was very interesting!

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