I'm Alice Schlein, a weaver and book maker in South Carolina. Occasionally I write about Photoshop, Network Drafting, bread baking, and whatever else strikes my fancy. Thanks for stopping by! Comments are welcome.
Explorations in Double Twill Two-hour lecture at the Complex Weavers Southeast Gathering. June 17-18, 2017, at the Yadkin Valley Fiber Room. For more information on the Gathering, click on above link.
Spin Your Own Yarn Jan. 17 - Mar. 13. Learn to use the simple drop spindle to spin your own woolen yarn for knitting, crochet, or weaving. This hand tool of prehistoric origin is inexpensive, portable, and easy to use. Create a mid-weight yarn suitable for garments, accessories, and household items. Pack all your spinning supplies in a lunchbag-sized tote and take it with you on vacation! Click on Winter Brochure 2017.
The Woven Pixel: Designing for Jacquard and Dobby Looms Using Photoshop® Co-authored by Alice Schlein and Bhakti Ziek. 362 pages, many illustrations. Now available for free download on handweaving.net. The accompanying CD with 1400 pattern presets is not included with the free download, but may be purchased separately. Email me at aschlein[at]att[dot]net for more information.
Network Drafting: An Introduction By Alice Schlein. Break away from the block. Curves for your dobby loom. Originally published in 1994, now available as print-on-demand from www.lulu.com.
A Crepe Is Not Just a Pancake 52 pages of text, b&w and color diagrams, and drafts for multishaft tradle & dobby looms. Many color photos of actual cloth. Methods for drafting your own crepe weaves. Annotated bibliography. Pdf available for immediate download. $21. USD. Payment by PayPal. Email me at aschlein[at]att[dot]net for payment instructions.
Echo Weave Based on the 1996 article in Weaver's, Issue 32. With brand new diagrams and high resolution scans of original fabrics. Pdf available for immediate download. $7. USD. Payment by PayPal. Email me at aschlein[at]att[dot]net for payment instructions.
My new weaving project is so nebulous, so in-the-first-stages, that just talking about it may send it off the rails. Some ideas need discussion, feedback, the rough and tumble. Not this one. Not yet. When it's ready, it will tell me.
Meanwhile, I offer this (totally unrelated) photo:
…and also this carrying-around project, that I save for those special moments when I'm on hold with Customer Service:
Going through some old lecture notes, I found the germ of an idea I never pursued when it first popped up; I think it's time to explore it further now.
This was a straight threading & treadling on 40 shafts. The 40x40 tieup was a section clipped from a jacquard file. The original jacquard file was based on 8-end inclusive satins; therefore, wherever the selection rectangle landed, the weave structures would flow continuously in every direction.
To further fracture the image, I divided the treadling into chunks of 8 picks each; there were five chunks (8x5=40). I wrapped individual chunks to the right in multiples of 8, in amounts to correspond to the counters of a five-end satin.
I notice that for some reason I also rotated the tieup, but structurally this wouldn't have been necessary. The finished drawdown has structural integrity. There are no floats longer than 7 in any direction.
The turtle scarf has been woven, cut off, washed, and steam pressed. It's a simulation of an 8-shaft networked twill. The fringes are not finished yet, so I've left them out of this photo. Sorry.
The interesting thing about the fabric is the reflective yarn in the warp. When you get up close and shine some light on it, you can see the multicolored sparkles in the warp yarn. Click to enlarge.
Meanwhile, outside everything is very green. There is the slightest suggestion of fall in the air. It's still hot, but not uncomfortably so. On my kitchen windowsill a few sprigs of rosemary (from a friend's front garden) are waiting for—what? A spur-of-the-moment focaccia? That's a good idea. While it's rising, I can twist the fringes on the scarf. The white car has been traveling the same road for 20 years. And the mouse? I can never rouse him from his book.
Believe me, I'm not one to complain about too many shafts. But there is a downside of having lots of shafts on your loom. The patterns can get pretty large if you don't modify them somehow. Imagine weaving cloth with circles as large as dinner plates and then stitching up a pair of pants. Not a pretty picture. At least for me.
But simulations of patterns on fewer shafts can easily be woven on more shafts. For straight threadings, repeat the liftplan of fewer shafts in your larger liftplan. Or for other drafts, such as networked threadings or block threadings, choose a threading that repeats on exactly the number of shafts on your loom (in this case 40), and use that warp drawdown as the liftplan for your straight threading on the greater number of shafts. Result: smaller circles.
I've described the genesis of this particular turtle pattern in this post and also this one. The woven example is a fine viscose warp at 40 epi and a very fine wool at 40 ppi. The fabric looks a bit sheer on the loom (click to enlarge the photo), but I've sampled this combination and it will finish up slightly fulled and drapey after washing & pressing. This will be a scarf, but the fabric would also be perfect for a casual shirt—or pants.
The animated video Weave! is at last available online. Check it out here. Weave! was premiered at the Complex Weavers Seminars in Albuquerque this past July. You can read more about the premiere performance in my July 29 post, and also on Sandra Rude's blog.
Weave! was accepted into the first ITAB: International TECHstyle Art Biennial at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles; the opening reception is today. Weave! is a collaboration of twelve weavers and a musician. We'd love to share it with all our friends. Pass it along!
Although I'm unable to attend the opening reception at the San Jose Museum, some of my partners will be there. In the coming days they will be reporting on the event, and I'll be sure to pass their comments along to you.
Greenville finally has its own Apple Store. It is staffed by friendly people in blue T-shirts. Some of these people are designated official Geniuses. Yesterday I made an appointment to speak to a Genius. While I was waiting for my Genius at the Genius Bar, I spotted the following interesting sight:
This little guy, who appeared to be about three years old, was totally accustomed to mousing around. He evidently likes the iMac, although I'd have pegged him as the iPad type.
I finally met my Genius. He was courteous and knowledgable. He solved my problem in two minutes flat, and wished me an awesome weekend. I am old enough to be his great-grandmother. Technically speaking.
Thanks, Marguerite, for sharing some turtle mythology.
Today's turtle is a smaller version of the 16-shaft networked draft; this time it repeats on 40 ends. Can you see where I'm headed with this? Hint: my loom has 40 shafts and is currently threaded with a straight threading.