Tagged ‘blue silk lining’

Blue Silk Jacket Lining

June 4th, 2008 by Jill Hall

This came from Justin today:

Here’s the latest jacket lining update-

scarn with blue silk on spoolsFirst off is a shot of the scarn holding all of those spools Kate and I have been winding. From here we’re able to warp nine ends at a time, not as many as we would have liked, but the skeins of silk were exceptionally difficult to work with. More on how the scarn works and how the warp is made in a minute.

Here’s Kate winding spools. We made the warp at the barn in Marshfield, Vermont where Kate and Eaton Hill Textiles is based. The ground level of the barn houses Kate’s dye studio where the silk was dyed, and the calendaring press for hot and cold pressing fabrics. Upstairs are a dozen looms and other equipment; antiqueKate from Eaton Hill Textiles winding spools for the blue silk lining. barn looms, small modern looms for tapes, two warping boards, several scarns, a great wheel, a quill wheel, a dobby loom with a jacquard head for pattern weaving, and too much more to mention.

Justin with warping board and scarn.Ok, back to the warping- Here you can see the warp running on the warping board to the left, and the spools held on the scarn on the right. The width of the board is six feet/two yards, so each horizontal pass adds two yards to the length of the warp. As you can see, the warp makes four passes and runs half a yard down to make the lower cross. Thus, the warp is eight and a half yards long. The jacket will require around six yards of finished cloth so why the extra? Some of this will be lost to the loom, and whatever is left over will be peace of mind. Better too much than too little especially on a project like this!

I’m going to attempt to explain how all of these threads are kept in order and become something useful. The scarn dividesJustin winding the warp for the blue silk. the spools into two sets, in our case vertically, left and right. When making a warp, each and every thread needs to be kept in its proper order, and this is done by crossing them while the warp is made. If you look at the picture, you’ll see that the top horizontal beam of the board has two additional pegs. Imagine that we’ve taken a single thread and tied it to the top left peg of the board, where the warp starts. That thread then passes over the top of the first of the two extra pegs, and under the second, before making the four passes down the board. Once at the bottom, the thread loops around the last peg and returns from the bottom back along the four passes to the top. At the two extra pegs, this thread now passes over the top of the second peg and under the bottom of the first peg. These two threads cross now at the pegs and when pulled off the board will stay in just the order they were put on in, since they can’t shift over each other and out of order with the cross in place.

Cat’s cradle.Now, if we were to progress in this manner, I would have to repeat this whole process over 1,100 times to create all of the individual threads needed in the warp. Thankfully, somebody, at least six or seven centuries ago, (probably longer), figured out that you don’t need to go through all of this trouble. By setting multiple spools on a scarn, you can warp multiple ends at the same time. We’re only using nine spools, but you could do as many as 48 with the scarn we are using. In this picture you can see how we pick the cross in all of these ends at once. It starts by splitting the ends vertically with the right arm and then holding that split with the let thumb. Now the right hand picks out every other thread by starting at the top right end. Under the first thread on the right, and picking the left thread, then under the second end down on the right and picking the second thread down on the left, all the way down. In the next picture, every other thread on the left has been picked through every other on the right and pulled to the side.

There are two more posts with pictures from Justin to come over the next couple of days. Thanks, Justin!

Justin working on the blue silk

May 7th, 2008 by Jill Hall

Bat head in detail.Here’s the second installment from Justin. The italics are quotes from Justin’s email.
Some more shots of the bat head on my wheel.

Swift on the woodbox, and bat head.Bat heads were the most common in New England before Minor’s, or the accelerating,bat-head-with-corn-husk.jpg head replaced them in the early 19th century to handle the newer, shorter fleeced breeds of sheep which were introduced following the revolution.

Spinning wheel.The plaited cornhusk bearings for the spindle are made from corn grown last year in the (1627 English) village.

Justin at work with wheel and swift.

Finally, a shot of yours truly in action. All of these pictures were taken at my house in Scituate, RI.

Thanks for the pictures and explanations, Justin. We’re looking forward to the next chapter.

Blue Silk

May 5th, 2008 by Jill Hall

I’m sorry I didn’t post last night. There was a lot of homework to do at my house, and by the time my number came up to use the computer, it was today.

Here as promised, though, is the beginning of a new story.

Eventually, the embroidery will be done, the oes sewn on, and it will be time to free the pieces from their frames and sew them together into a garment. (I can hear you asking, and the answer is – Probably me, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.)

The jacket will have to be lined, both for its longevity and to perpetuate the accuracy of the reproduction. Margaret Laton’s jacket is lined in a carnation-pink silk. V&A #1359-1900 is lined in a pale blue silk. What color, and what silk should we use?

Several months ago one of my colleagues got in touch with me, coincidentally just about the time I started thinking seriously about what we would use for a lining. Justin is a first-person interpreter in the 1627 Colonial Village, but last winter he was working with Kate Smith and Norman Kennedy at Eaton Hill Textile Works in Vermont.

So, said Justin, have you thought about using a hand-woven silk for the lining? Maybe naturally dyed? No, I hadn’t, but obviously it’s a great idea. I’ll do up a little sample? he said, And see what you think? Oh, yes, please. I thought blue, since the embroidery pattern, and thus the colors, are coming from #1359-1900, which is lined in blue. Besides, there’s something irresistible about indigo, don’t you think?

The sample came, much faster than I would have expected, a little snip of blue silk in plain weave, with impossibly fine warp and weft. The silk is fine, but with a crisp hand not unlike taffeta, but not so crunchy.

Blue silk lining sample and threads.We put it up next to the blue silk and light blue GST – and look. What did we think? Fabulous. Late last week Justin sent me some photos and details of the silk production process so far. I’ll be sharing them with you over the next few days.

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