Friday, December 28, 2012

FO: Woven Dishcloths

Pattern: It's just plain weave (aka tabby) where each weft thread crosses the warp alternating over and under to form a simple criss-cross pattern.

Yarn: The warp is a natural colour dishcloth cotton that I bought as millends from the Spinrite Factory Outlet sale - probably a factory second of Bernat Handicrafter cotton. For the weft I used more of the same with stripes of leftover Bernat Handicrafter cotton in White, Country Red, Terra Firma Ombre and Indigo.

Comments: Dressing the loom with the warp threads is time-consuming so I decided to warp up several feet, weave it from start to finish and then cut apart the final woven fabric into a few squarish cloths. Right now I'm using a warping peg as shown in this video, but DH has agreed to make me a warping board as soon as I draw up the plans. That might make things easier :)

Because I'm new to weaving I decided I should aim simply for a balanced weave and work at my tension to achieve neat selvedge edges. Looks to me like the natural cotton is thinner than the coloured cottons because my weave looks balanced when I'm using the same yarn for warp and weft but the balance is off at the stripes. My selvedges still need a lot of work.

Cutting the fabric into smaller squares was nerve-wracking. I did three things to hem each end. I hem-stitched on the loom using the dishcloth cotton according to this video. That would probably be sufficient if I were leaving a fringe. I cut the cloths apart between two weft threads (aka picks), used my sewing machine to zigzag those edges, then rolled to form a hem and straight stitched on the machine to finish them.

My resulting hems are pretty chunky. Well you can imagine, as they are essentially three thicknesses of dishcloth cotton. I googled to gather more ideas about hemming. One suggestion was to run one pick of a bulky thread through where you want your fold and then pull it out to leave a gap which will fold quite readily. Another suggestion was to use a much thinner thread for the weft at the hem area - even as thin as sewing thread - to create a much thinner fabric in this area for less bulky hems. I plan to give both suggestions a try on my next project.

You may have also noticed that red sock in the first photo. The first sock is done, but as the second is still on the needles it doesn't really count as a finished object does it? One more thing in that photo? Our first snow! The neighbourhood kids are thrilled that they finally got some tobogganing weather!  It's Friday, so why not spend some time at Tami's Amis to see what everyone else has finished?!

17 comments:

Babajeza said...

Sure, it counts. Lovely socks.
The cloths look good. I haven't woven on a big loom for ages. :-)

Dee said...

BOTH projects are beautiful! That red sock color really POPS.


The dishcloths are very pretty. I think pulling the thread and folding sounds like a good idea. I've used that on cross stitch projects to make a neat fold.

Nancy McCarroll said...

Those cloths are beautifully done. It has been 30 years since I tried my hand at weaving, but did not have very good results although I still do use one table runner.

You have created beauty! Would hate to get them dirty!!

Visiting from FOFridays.

Michelle said...

Your dish towel sets are beautiful! I mean, really, really!

Wanderingcatstudio said...

They look great - and so does the sock!

Renee Anne said...

I know squat about weaving but the end results look lovely to me :)

Melanie Rose said...

Looking good! I really need to figure out how to make looser selvages.

bookworm-Mary said...

The weaving looks great-- the internet is such a fabulous source for searching out alternative methods-- glad you were able to get some new ideas! Good Luck with your weaving-- so far, so good :)

Kepanie said...

Oh boy are these dishcloths excellente! Fantastic, poppin' red sock there too.

Chrisknits said...

The sock is lovely and the hand woven items are charming. I so want to weave, I so do not need another craft!

Spinster Beth said...

Your weaving is just lovely ... it makes me want to try it again, though my selvedges were embarrassing!

Sarah said...

Gosh these looks awesome, I would even have thought about weaving dishcloth cotton! Your stock looks wonderful!

Monica said...

Love, love the dish cloths! The sock looks very nice. Stay warm.

WildflowerWool said...

Fun socks!

Deb Hickman said...

They look fab, they are so neat and look so much nicer that the shop bought ones you get here in the U.K. Have a good weekend. Deb x

Evelyn said...

Woven dishcloths are the best ... I hope to weave sometime in the new year and you've re-inspired me!

Jazz said...

Awesome dishcloths.

Happy Holidays!