Monday, March 3, 2008

Wet Finishing

I just thought I would post a couple of photos to demonstrate the difference wet finishing makes in handwoven textiles. This first photo is of an Ms and Os scarf that I wove recently, in bamboo, with lots of fun colors (purple, teal, yellow, caramel...):

I actually took the color inspiration from a painting by my daughter! (When she paints, I give her three little pots to fill and she chooses what primary colors to mix to get the final shades she wants.)

Anyway, you can see that it looks kind of flat when it comes off the loom. It also feels much stiffer than it will after it is washed. There's also a threading error in it, so that means I'm keeping this scarf instead of selling it (I know others sell less-than-perfect work for a discount, but I just can't bring myself to do it!)... I love the colors so much, I'm wondering whether I did it intentionally, lol! I fixed the threading, though, and wove another one to put in my shop.

And, here it is, after washing (photo taken inside, normally I take them outside, in the shade):

Can you see the difference? (I hadn't trimmed my ends or anything yet at this point.) The structure has really softened up, the Os looks like Os, and the whole thing shrank a bit as well. And it's beautifully soft to the touch now, too!

Man, though, it looks like it's going to be tough to photograph it's sister (the one without the goof) and really capture the colors... It's really quite a bit prettier in person, I think!

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