My project for this holiday season is a bit of ‘clear out the stash before the new year’. I’ve selected a project that was planned in the Summer of 2012. I had access (thanks to Glenna) to industrial amounts of white sock yarn. Planning a garment of a size to fit me, I measured out rather long hanks (3 ft diameter). Glenna helped me to a rainbow dye job for this yarn.
At the beginning of the holiday season, to keep me from overdoing it on the cookie-baking, I set up a warp.
I tied a red thread around the centre of the warp to mark the neck opening, more about this later.
For this to work properly, you have to use the circular warp technique. This means that the first rows of work are on either side of the centre of the piece. The first rows of work here are the shoulders. Inspired by the work of a Dutch sprang expert, Coby, I decided to double up the threads at the shoulder, switch to single threads below the yoke of the sweater.
The secret to being able to push the false weave around is adequate width. I found that long shed sticks, spreading out the warp, moving the threads in sections was the key.
Weaving progressed, here I am getting near the finish: the two ends approach.
When only 5 inches was left between the two ends of cloth, it was time to cut the threads. I cut them 3 at a time, and tied an overhand knot, pushing the knot up to the cloth, working my way across the warp.
Now I have to decide which side is front:
Munich is the home of Dagmar Drinkler, that famous sprang artist, who has sparked the discussion on tight fitting clothing from antiquity, probably sprang. I had the pleasure of speaking with her again this past November. Thanks, Dagmar, for taking the time.
On to the Textile Museum in Krefeld. They have an amazing collection of Coptic bonnets, and allowed me close examination. The historic record of sprang patterns is amazing! I’m thinking that these patterns would be lovely as vests, have made up a few samples:
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
I attended the VI Conference on Indigenous Textiles at the Quay Branly in Paris at the end of November. This museum is next-door to the Eiffel Tower. OK, the Paris sights are wonderful, but I was focusing on Indigenous Textiles. Yes, sprang was done in the Americas before Columbus. It seems the Paracas were particularly skilled.
Before returning home, I stopped by to visit with contemporary sprang artist Edith Meusnier. You have to check out her website:
If you every have a chance to see her installations in person, please do. Photos cannot do justice to her work.