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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Technicolor Scrap Scarf

I'm finally blogging the new weaving project I was hinting about! It's been done for some time. Yeah... life has been busy lately.

So I said a while back that I was doing a project with sock yarn scraps that wasn't a hexipuff blanket (I like the little puffs but not the finished quilt - I'm more the mitered squares blanket type, really). I decided the best way to use some of my gorgeous leftover sock yarns was in a woven scarf. As I'm still a new weaver I make a lot of mistakes, and it's comforting to use yarn that I've already got my money's worth out of. That way, if I totally ruin a project, it doesn't lead to guilt. I try really hard not to let my hobbies induce feelings of guilt. Guilt can really mess up something that was supposed to be fun, and I'm not cool with that.

So, what does it look like?

Fantastic is what it looks like, if I do say so myself. There are SO MANY MISTAKES in this scarf, and normally that would annoy the crap out of me, but I just can't bring myself to hate a single thing about it. It's soft, it's warm, it's squishy, the colours look wonderful, and it has sparkly bits - there is nothing more I could ask of it.

I used my new 12.5 dpi reed, which made a dense but drapey fabric with fingering weight yarn. The warp is a variety of sock yarns, some as fancy as Koigu KPPPM and Sweet Georgia Tough Love, and some as cheap as Knitpicks Stroll Tonal. The weft is Knit Picks Gloss Fingering in black. I think I'd like to actually knit something out of this yarn some time - it's delightful. I also carried some gold... string (it's not embroidery thread or sewing thread, it's that scratchy shiny gold stuff you can find on spools in the bead section at Michaels) along with the black for about two inches on each end of the scarf. It had exactly the effect I hoped for - a luxurious hint of localized bling.

I have to say, I much prefer the fabric created by the springier, more high-twist sock yarns. It has more give and thickness, without actually being more dense.

So. Mistakes and learning experiences:
  • When instructions tell you to roll paper between layers of warp on the back bar, do it. It does make a huge, huge difference.
  • Be careful when threading the reed. Otherwise you might end up with a goofy warp that has one extra thick strand. Woops.
  • Wind the work on when the shed gets too small, rather than passing the shuttle through an unfeasibly small space and consistently picking up warp threads that are meant to be left alone.
  • Weaving done on sproingy warp yarn shrinks a lot when it comes off the loom, and even more in the wash.
  • Using multiple yarns of very different stretch and give in the warp will give you problems.
  • If there's a manufacturer's knot in a warp thread replace it with a weavers knot or put the break at one end of the warp. It WILL come undone later, when you really don't have any space to fix it.
  • The thing about the paper that we talked about earlier. Seriously.

Have one last picture - enjoy the pretty flowers on my two-foot-high bolted kale plants! They're not good for much other than looking at now that it's warm and they insist on reproducing rather than growing leaves (yes I did cut them back, no they won't be deterred, they're twitterpated and who am I to stand in the way of love?).

I guess this counts as a crafty goal achievement too because I started (and finished!!) a sock yarn scrap project! I'm so clever.



  1. Stunning! Mistakes? What mistakes? They are creative learning curves. Therefore they are positive 'steps' not mis-steps.

    Gorgeous in every sense of the word. This lovely scarf can be dressed up because of the sparkly bling, or dressed down to give a bit of pepp to plainer ensembles like T-shirts and jeans.

    You'll get loads of enjoyment and use out of this accessory. Love it!

  2. This is GORGEOUS!!! You are unstoppable! Screw the kale plants...I am twitterpated with your scarf.


  3. Lol KK I will NOT be screwing the kale plants ;)


  4. I LOVE this scarf. I have a little loom that I need to learn how to use right now, you inspired me!

  5. What a wonderful project. It will look stunning with little black dress or jeans.

  6. it's gorgeous! hope I get to see it in person