Tunic revisited

Seriously in withdrawal from that replica project, I’ve felt the need to immerse myself in something else. I pulled out that warp I abandoned in December.
Working to produce a “Wari art inspired tunic” for the Cleveland Museum of Art, I initially selected a lace weight alpaca and silk blend from Knit Picks. A whole can of spray starch was insufficient to coat the warp, make it possible to move each row around to the mirror-image side of the cloth. Working for a deadline, and out if ideas, I abandoned the warp.
Over the last two months, working on the extra-wide replica sash, I’ve learned a great deal, come up with some ideas.
The very slippery silk used in the extra-wide sash also offered significant resistance when bunched together too tightly.
I decided to go back to the ‘sticky’ alpaca warp to test the theory.

spreading sticky warp

The bar at the top of the photo keeps the warp spread.

I held only small groups of threads in my hands, reaching down to my safety sticks to catch up the next group of threads. It seems important to keep the threads evenly and well spaced. This has been key to an otherwise impossible task.

Now, I’ve seen images of sprang frames, with the cloth tied to the upright sides of the frame. This would be another way to keep the cloth spread out, facilitating moving the shed around.

Sticky warp or not, I have found that keeping the warp nicely spread goes a long way to avoiding errors. It’s good practice in general.

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