The first cloth of 2019 has been woven, and we though that you would like to see the new warp colours that we've used!
Putting our own coloured warp on the loom is a big undertaking so we have to weave several different designs on each one. This means that choosing the warp is the starting point of every new collection of wrap releases because it will be a feature of each wrap. We use colour swatches, digital mock ups and a bit of creative visualisation to imagine how it will look. Years of experience have taught us a lot, so we have a better idea of how colours will work (for example we've realised that light warps often look paler than the small dye swatch once they're on the beam) but we only get to see how a warp actually looks when it is too late to change anything! Each new warp is a bit of a step into the unknown, but that makes seeing the finished product all the more exciting...
Wrap cloth is actually woven double width, so 50 metres of cloth off the loom will be cut in half to create 100 metres of wrap fabric. Weaving is a slow process, and your babies grow fast, so being able to offer two warp colours from one weave run means that we get more variety in our shop at any one point.
It is possible for us to use different coloured warp threads and arrange them so that one half of the cloth has a completely different coloured warp than the other. The complication is that both the same weft and design must be used across both halves of the cloth. So whatever works well on one warp colour must also work well on the other, and that has to be the case for all the different wraps woven on that warp. It is a challenging logic puzzle, and can be very frustrating at times!
Our newest warp is special for several reasons. Firstly it has two very differently coloured halves, which each work perfectly with the weft choices to create a wide range of options. Secondly, it is the first time that we've chosen to use a single graduation of colour across the entire width of the wrap.
Each half of the warp is made from 3 colours that blend into one another to create a gentle shift of colour from one rail to the next. I have a piece of Indigo Cyano Seafoam framed above my bed. Late last summer (which gives you and indication of how long the cloth production process actually is) I was lying on the bed, thinking about how lovely the Cyano warp colours were, and that we should use them again at some point, but with some sort of difference to the originals We've had two different cyano warps in the past, one with thicker stripes and one thinner, and both a long time ago, so now seemed like a good time to revisit them. A soft fade from green to blue across the width of the cloth seemed the natural next step for playing around with this colour combination
Once we'd chosen wefts and designs to weave across the Cyano coloured side, we had to choose which colours to use on the other side. The wefts we'd chosen were fairly neutral, so our options were wide open in terms of what would match them. We decided that we needed something equally bold to complement the zingy turquoise, and there is one pink shade that we've both always loved, but could never see how to work with it- until now!
There are 3 different colours in this warp, although they blend so smoothly that it can be hard to tell them apart at first! The top rail has a soft electric blue, the middle is more of a 'classic' turquoise and the bottom rail is a vibrant sea green. We'd completely forgotten what a pain it was to try and capture vibrancy of the original cyano warp on camera until this newest version arrived with us! You really need to see the green in real life to be truly wowed by it...
This side of the warp has a wider shift of colour, from the warm toned lilac at the top of the wrap, through to a mid toned pink that blushes to an almost raspberry colour.
Initially we'd planned to weave 3 different weft/designs across this warp, because that would then make 6 different wraps in total. Nothing ever runs smoothly though, and we didn't have enough of one weft thread to fill the whole warp, so we added a 4th design to the list to use up the remaining space on the loom.
Then we had a call from the mill to say that there was a tiny amount of warp left to weave on- did we want to pick something quickly from our stored boxes of wefts to use it up? We'd spent ages carefully planning the rest of the weave plan, but we picked that last one in minutes! Limited options can be very creatively liberating, and we ended up selecting quite a bold weft choice that we might not have plumped for in other circumstances. There will only be enough for a few wraps worth of that cloth, so it wasn't too much of a gamble to be adventurous in our decision!
We'll be introducing you to all the different designs and wefts woven on this weft as soon as we can, and they'll all be being released over the first part of this year. The first release will be the Dryad Sunset Seafoam, which is the pink/white one in these photos