The weaving is done
The re-supply of weft yarn came quickly from Kampes – very nice and quick service, and high quality yarns: I can recommend!
As soon as the two extra skeins arrived I set to spooling up bobbins and weaving. I used up one full skein, and just less than half of the second one, so I was right in ordering two at once. However, my spooling machine was starting to make some unhappy sounds, and I noticed brass shavings coming off the cog wheel.
I soldiered on until it became too annoying that the wheel bound up and stopped the spooling. It turned out, after a closer look at it, that the tensioner had lost half of its head. It’s just a slotted screw, but one side of the slot was missing. It is a very tiny screw so difficult to get a hold of to adjust. In the end I had to stop spooling at the perfect spot as I ended up with a single bobbin left over from the ones I had prepared.
So on Friday I spent a total of three hours and ten minutes finishing up the weaving and cut it off the loom. That left me with some hand finishing to do: weaving in broken warp ends etc, which took another hour and a half.
Washing (gentle cycle with shampoo) and rolling the finished fabric to dry took me another hour of active work, and finally I spent 40 minutes at the ironing board pressing the fabric with lots of steam.
We evaluated the fabric once it was dry, and decided to try to wash it again on a normal cool (40 degrees) wash cycle. It fulled the surface just a little bit more. I rolled it up again with some towels to let it dry under gentle tension, and unrolled it today Monday Sept 5, and aired it out on the balcony before rolling it up and presenting it to my husband who will make a working man’s outfit from the 1500’s out of it.
The finished measurements for the yardage is 691 cm long at 66 cm wide. The width varies just a little bit, say plus or minus half a centimeter. The first 90 cm I beat the wefts down a little harder, but the difference in the hand of the fabric is slight, definitely noticeable though. The finishing steps evened out the fabric some.
Estimate of total hours worked: 39h 30 min
Per metre of cloth that is 5 hours and 40 minutes of work. Including warping, dressing the loom, weaving and finishing it for use.
The weaving took some time to be sure, but before I had even thrown a single shuttle I had already clocked up over 17 hours. The finishing touches and wet finishing means that non-weaving time totalled 20 hours and 30 minutes.
Pure weaving time is only 2 hours and 45 minutes to weave one metre. This was not particularily quick to weave either, as I had to carefully place the wefts to prevent draw-in.
What sort of hourly wage would you think appropriate for this craft? How much should this yardage sell for? I’ll leave those as open questions.
I must say I am quite pleased with the whole project, and the finished results. It will be very interesting to see it made up into a garment as well, and see how it behaves when worn. Once that happens I will probably return with an update, but since that is not my project I don’t know when that will be.