Hi all! Just bought the backstrap ebook and am trying to get started, but.... I can't get the shed that uses the shed rod. My warp is 3/2 pearl cotton and I'm finding that it is sticking to other warps and to the string heddles when I try to make that second shed. I don't know what to do! I started out using carpet warp for the string heddles and that was sticking, so I redid the string heddles with 3/2 pearl cotton and it's STILL sticking! I have no idea what to do to salvage this. I wanted to make do the backstrap project.
I am not the expert, but your mercerized cotton should not cause sticking. Can you post a picture so we can see what's happening? Perhaps a finer material for the string heddle? I use 8/2 mercerized cotton for mine.
This is odd as I wouldn't expect pearl cotton to be sticking like that. When I work with sticky yarn and the shed won't pop open by simply tilting the sword and putting tension on the warp, I have to get my hands into the shed and lift the warps section by section up and through the heddles. That shed won't always just pop open automatically but I have to say that it surprises me that the 3/2 pearl is not doing so.
hi Cheryl, try putting hair conditioner on your hands and running your fingers through the warp. Once it dries, it will coat the warp, and make it slightly stiff, which is much easier to handle as it will no longer grab. If the hair conditioner is too thick, you can dilute it as much as 50/50. This works wonderfully on wool and other grabby, sticky yarns. You are basically using the hair conditioner as a warp size, and it rinses out once you have completed your item, leaving the weaving nice and soft and nice-smelling.
One more thing that occured to me is that you may not have made your heddles long enough. I use my four fingers to measure out my heddle length. If the heddles are very short, the warps in the shed rod shed will get stuck in the heddles and you won't be able to create a nice wide shed. I am trying to figure out why this is happening as pearl cotton should not be sticky.
Ok, I tried to reply and obviously I have no clue what I'm doing!!! I can't find my reply. So, I'll try again and hope I don't end up with two!
My string heddles are about 1-3/4". Is that too short? What height should it be instead? I can open the shed rod shed without a problem, but when I try to scoot it down past the heddle shed, everything is just plain stuck! Here's a photo.
1 and 3/4" is plenty long. From the photo it looks like you have crossed warps. I think I can see some heddles looking shorter than others and that happens when you have crossed warps as that heddle is bending around a warp that has gotten in the way.
I would completely redo your heddles. Put the cross sticks back in and pay extra special attention when you are picking up each warp to put it in its heddle. Try and spread out the warps as much as possible having a good space between the warp that you are putting in a heddle and those around it so you can clearly see at the cross sticks that you are not picking up the wrong one. Check and double check that you have selected the right one before enclosing it in its heddle.
I am pretty sure that this is the problem. You may have only one or two crossed but they will still cause this annoying sticking problem.
Let us know how you go :-)
Yea! I'm so excited! I very carefully reinserted the lease sticks and made sure nothing was crossed, then redid the heddle shed.... held my breath, and...I was able to create the second shed and bring it in front of the heddle loops!
Thank you for your help! We are going on vacation next week and I think this is going to be a great way to bring something to weave with me without taking up much room in the luggage!
yay! Glad it worked out. Posting your photo of the warp really helped. Happy weaving on your vacation :-)