The profile draft challenge

The challenge in a nutshell: take this profile and "run with it" - completing, changing, interpreting, networking... and tell us what you come up with!

Some background:

A couple of years ago my local guild thought it would be nice if our national guild would present weaving ideas and/or drafts and/or complete instructions now and again.
We proposed that to the AGM, and we got very differing reactions – some thought it a great idea, others said they would never, ever "give away" their work for free. (If I tell "them", then "they" will know as much as I do – and then, where would I be?)

A year, or maybe 2, later it was decided that we should give it a try. (Now we have 26 "Månadens väv" published, all in .pdf-format. All are welcome to download and be inspired!) Me and my guild, being responisble for the idea, have taken it rather too seriously to supply drafts. (In fact, we have sent in over 30% of the drafts, having 2% of the members of Riks.)

"The usual" did happen: "oh, what a good idea – I love to see all the new weaves!" "What? Me contribute? But I’m not good enough/have only 4 shafts/only weave on a drawloom/..." (Note: nobody says, to my face, anyway, that they don't want to share.)

So I decided it was time to do something – and, in the last guild mag, I issued The Profile Draft Challenge (or click here for Swedish.)

I hope we can get at least 12 Månadens väv out of it!!!

After thinking a bit further, I decided to extend the challenge/invite to weavers from all over the world. (I may not be authorized to promise a publication as a Månadens väv, but as I am webmaster for the local pages, I can do what I want with them, right?)
To make the challenge even more open/accessible, I started a group on Weavolution, too.

So now I invite those of my readers who are neither members of Riksföreningen för handvävning nor members of Weavolution to at least read about it – and then maybe to become members of one or the other (or both!) – and join the challenge!

To get a .wif, you have to go either to the guild page(s) or to Weavolution.


Crackle – corrections

Thanks to Laura, I now have re-read the Tidball book.
What I remembered was wrong (or came from another book altogether).

Tidball does indeed advocate three colours, but in a way different than I thought:
(easier to scan than to type it...)

A bit later she also writes that she uses "a heavy dark and two fine light colors".

So let’s go back some. Here is the profile, again:

Here it is, the threading again converted according to Tidball’s system. I don’t know what she means with “follow the rythm”, but this is a guess.

Using Tidball’s treadling system (as above – assuming that "block A" is the leftmost), and the recommendations to use one dark heavy weft and two fine light wefts, it looks like this:

(Again, I rotated to make it bigger in the picture-wiever)
Note that, according to the treadling specifications, there is one extra light-coloured pick "for the transition", which means there are two same-coloured picks at the block changes.
(But why the two light colours?)

For truth’s sake, I should also quote another sentence: "Weaving as drawn in is not commonly attemped in crackle, though the Swedish books contain many crackle (called Jämtlandsvaev) drafts for elaborate symmetrical patterns, symmetrically woven." (Me, the dumb Swede, can’t se any obvious relation between symmetric draft, symmetrically woven, and "as drawn in"... And I still haven’t seen any Swedish jämtlandsdräll woven any other way than "as overshot".)

However. Several of the (north american) weaving softwares often want to use tromp-as-writ, if left to their “automatic” preferences. So the mystery still remains: why tromp-as-writ?


Finished honeycomb samples

I wove the three samples from here – that is, I omitted the one that would result in two separate layers.

This is what they look like, unfinished (scanned):

the original Maja draft (and a correction to last post – it calls for *22* ends per centimetre, which is why a doubled warp means 44 epcm).

the double-sided, with just one "cell" weft.

and the third, which has 2 cell wefts, the layers being connected by the outlines.

We abused them as best we could – hot water, vigorous washing, more hot water, wringing, drying in dryer… the lot.
Nothing very exciting happened… here they are, finished and scanned:

reacted as predicted. Obviously the widths of the cells (warpwise) are important, as is the depth (number of picks). Comparing the results to some old-ish pieces I have met, I can see that, if the cells are small enough, there is no need for the thicker outline weft.

did not really develop any “cells” (also more or less as predicted). However, if we adopt the old name “bed cover weave”, I would say this is better than the original. After all, it has a serviceable wrong side.

was more of a disappointment to me. I had thought there would be more distortions - . Perhaps “longer”cells (more picks) would have made a difference? Longer cells would have meant more space for the floats (but would of course have generated more floating yarns, too).

Will I ever try the more complex (and even thinner) Hulda Peter’s honeycomb? No, probably not... Would I try a double-sided with somewhat thicker yarn? Well – perhaps it would make a sturdy draft-breaking door drapery - which could be made in several other more interesting structures, instead...


First honeycomb samples

So I took up Laura’s challenge to bring woven samples when I visit - .

The original Maja draft looks like this:

It calls for cotton 30/2 set at 22 ends per centimeter.

As I wanted to experiment with giving it a useable reverse side, I needed a “back” warp, which meant I had to have 44 ends per cm. (That means 44 x 2,5 = 110 ends per inch, so my american readers don’t have to convert... :-)

I wound some 800 ends (lost count somewhere after 825) to the shortest warp I dared put on the AVL – 2,5 meters, about.

Threading was ok, sort of. I made several widths of cells, from Maja’s 10 and 4, to max 40 and 40, to see if/how the width would influence the results. I ignored the selvages.
Then came the sleying... After some thinking, I decided to sley 9 ends per dent in a 50/10 (metric) reed, which would give me 45 ends per cm. With the odd number, it meant I have an average of 22,25 epcm and “layer”.

It turned out I made two sleying mistakes, but I solved them the alexandrian way: I just cut out 9 ends at each place. (It is a sample, after all, so it doesn’t really matter.)

Then I started weaving. Too soft tension. After several tries I had a tension so I almost couldn’t advance the warp, but I really would have liked i higher. (At least it is my experience that very tight cloth requires very high tension.)
It turned out I had made a couple of silly mistakes when converting the draft to dobby, but after some corrections I had it right.

The red portion is the “simple cloth” (ie the extra warp floats at the back).
Then I switched to blue weft and the double-sided (one-weft) version.

As I was very curious about how the back looked, I just pointed the camera to the underside...:

Of course, with wet finishing it may yet come out ok!

Having a backing warp also took care of the selvages – at least at the left side. Had I used two shuttles for the outlining weft I would have had two nice selvages (I think).

(Yes it is blurry)

This is the weaving draft for the double-sided – rotated to “fool” the image-viewer:

(Laura, shall I bring them unfinished? Then we both can share the excitement... or the disappointment, of course)