Summer & Winter is an aesthetically beautiful weave with its reversible sides. It is also a technically interesting weave. The structure of the weave is such that you don’t get long floats and the pattern wefts bind constantly into the fabric making it a very stable structure.
At the studio, we had set up Ashford 8 shaft Katie table loom a couple of months ago with a draft for the summer & winter so we could explore this lovely structure every now & then. The loom was set up with mercerized cotton 20/2 in the ground warp.
Whenever we found some time, we went to the loom and weaved some patterns, hoping to settle on some nice patterns we can recreate later. Well, there were many lovely patterns which emerged but still, we didn’t find one which we would make us go ‘yay’! During one of the exploratory weaving sessions, we could ‘spot’ the Tamil letter “ ழ” in the pattern repeating itself, though a little squarish.
For people new to the Tamil language, it is a very special letter which is pronounced ‘la’ but not with the tip of the tongue from the front of your palate. Try pushing your entire tongue to the backmost of the palate and say ‘la’. You will make that sound 😊
That set forth the thought why not try weaving some letters of the Tamil alphabet on the loom? And what better than creating them on silk? After all, the language is as crisp and soft as silk and is always adored!
It didn’t take much time to create some of the letters using WeavePoint software once we got the hang of it. Then we prepared a beautiful silk warp in hand-dyed silk yarn in orchid colour which had some lovely streaks, accentuating the depth of the orchid shade. Loaded the warp onto AVL Compu-Dobby loom with 8 shafts.
The marriage of WeavePoint software & AVL Compu-Dobby loom was made in heaven! Just connect the loom over Wi-Fi, open the design and start weaving. As simple as that.
We didn’t want the letters to look like they are holding hands across the width of the fabric. So, for every pattern weft, we inserted the yarn with a small 6” stick shuttle for just one block to make the letter stand out boldly from the background.
The whole scarf 2m long was woven in just 6 hours, thanks to the AVL loom which is practically seamless in operation.