Solo Heddle Thread

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Heddle Thread

Postby Ashka on July 29th, 2017, 3:54 pm


60 Summer 517

Ashka had decided to start with a sturdy woven strap as a sample, the sort of thing that could double as both a belt and as something to tie together a bundle of sticks to make them easier to carry. She had a feeling that she was going to be carrying a lot of wood here and she might as well make it easier on herself. Besides, if people saw her using it, that would make it a walking advertisement, and they might want her to make one for them too.

Chaya helped her wind the figure of eight warp to the correct length, then ran off to poke at things on the beach. Ashka fastened one end to a convenient low branch nearby so that she could keep an eye on her sister, and settled herself comfortably with the backstrap around her hips. She picked up a hank of sturdy thread and began to wind herself a heddle, so that once she began to actually weave she could lift the warp threads up and down easily.

The figure of eight warp, combined with the thickness of the end poles, meant that half the threads rose up in the nearer part of the loom and half rose up in the further part. She started with the nearer half, and slid a free thread through the gap between the upper and lower layers. She wound the end around her left hand and held it above the loom, then carefully nudged the leftmost warp thread sideways a little to make a gap between it and the next thread. The heddle thread running underneath it stood out in pale contrast, and the fingers of her right hand darted down between the threads like the beak of a diving bird. She pinched the heddle thread between thumb and forefinger, drew it up between the two warp threads, and wrapped a second loop around her hand. The heddle thread now had a loop on the outside of the warp threads, and then went from there under the first warp thread and up again into a second loop. She moved her left hand up slightly to test it and smiled in satisfaction to see the warp thread lift with her hand.

She lowered her left hand again, nudged the second warp thread over beside the first, and darted her right hand down into the new gap. She brought up a third loop of heddle thread, wrapped it around her hand and moved on across the warp of her loom. Each warp thread acquired its own loop either side of it, and then finally she reached the other side of the warp and made one final loop to finish it off. Her hand was now covered in wound loops of thread, and she hung onto them tightly to make sure that she didn't lose any of them and have to start all over again. Until she got them fastened securely together, she didn't dare to move from the loom. Chaya, of course, chose that moment to squeak in delight and scrabble into the sand for something Ashka couldn't see.


Word count522 words
Running total: 7332 words


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Ashka
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Heddle Thread

Postby Ashka on August 26th, 2017, 5:16 pm


Ashka looked up and down the beach, her free hand groping for her dagger so she could throw it if necessary, but she saw no danger. The half made heddle tied her in place and she grimaced in frustration. She traded her dagger for the scissors from her sewing kit, cut the heddle from the ball of thread, then fumbled one handed to unwind another length of thread. She should, she realised, have cut a length before she started winding, but it was too late now.

She yanked on the loose end and it unspooled, while at the other end, the ball of yarn bounced, rolled, and skittered across the ground. Ashka scowled at it and at herself for the mistake, snipped a length, and threaded it through all the loops on her hand. She pulled the ends of the new thread up, leaned forward and held one in her teeth while she clumsily tied the other to it. She pulled and cut a second tie, and only then eased the loops off her hand. She still had to hold them carefully at this point, or they could pull out and unravel. However once her hand was free, she bunched the loops together and tied the new length tightly round them about an inch from the top. That prevented the unraveling, and she always thought it made the string heddle look like a woollen doll with a puffy skirt.

Out on the beach, Chaya came up out of her hole with a triumphant grin and a long thin shellfish clutched in her hand. "Clams for dinner!" she yelled, dumped it in their bucket, and began stalking the sand for signs of another one. Ashka returned the grin, then rolled her eyes at her little sister's back. Razorshell clams would make a nice change, but she didn't see them as a cause to squeal and shriek in delight and excitement. But then again, that was Chaya all over. Ashka shook her head to herself, and tried to refocus her mind on her weaving.

She took yet another length of thread from the ball, and turned to the farther half of the loom. This part was much simpler. She only had to slide the length of thread between the two layers there, lift up the ends of it, and tie them together in a single, simple loop. She managed it without much of a problem and nodded in satisfaction. With that done, she was no longer tied to the loom. She could ease out of it and roll up the partly finished project for transport any time she needed to. She stretched slowly, rolling her head on her neck and flexing her fingers to work out any cramps and stiffness from her work so far, then eyed her threads to see which she felt like winding onto her shuttle to use as a weft thread. She wanted one that neither matched the heddle thread, so that there would be no confusion, and also one that toned with the warp threads so that when she made the simple pattern it would look good.


Word count520 words
Running total: 9237 words


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Ashka
Spinning between two seas
 
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Heddle Thread

Postby Ashka on September 16th, 2017, 10:37 pm


Eventually she picked a sea-blue thread that toned with the warp and wound it onto her shuttle. The notches on both ends of the shuttle helped to keep the thread in place, and the rhythm of the winding was soothing and familiar on the unfamilar shore that had replaced the ships she had grown up on. Once the thread was fully wound onto the shuttle, she took the end of the thread, wound it around the end bar nearest to her, and tied it firmly in place. That was the last piece of setup she needed to do before she could start the actual weaving process, and she looked up from her work to check how Chaya was doing.

There were now two scrabbled out holes in the beach, and Chaya was working on a third, head down and sand spraying out behind her. And, Ashka noticed, over her too, leaving streaks of damp sand on her clothes, limbs, and hair. Ashka smiled crookedly and shook her head. That was going to take some removing later, but for now - well, at least it was keeping Chaya occupied and out of the jungle. At least one of them was enjoying it here.

She watched for a moment longer and then turned back to her weaving. It wouldn't, after all, weave itself. She checked the threads to make sure that the two layers of the figure of eight warp were properly seperated. She thouht they were, but she was horribly aware that there was no one here to back up her basic skill or point out problems and that made her want to check and check again until she was as sure as she could be that it was going the right way.

She lifted the farther loop so that she would start with threads crossed in front of the end pole to make a flat start, eased the threads up with her hand, and then lifted the flat beater and rapped the point where they crossed down to rest against the pole. She set the beater down, slid the shuttle between the layers with one hand, starting on the side where it was bound to the end pole, and caught it in her other hand. Drawing the last of the thread through, she paused with one loop around her finger. She slid the weft thread down to the pole, pinched both edges of the warp and eased the last of the weft through until it just rested on the edge. Ashka took a breath, slid her hand between the layers and turned it sideways to seperate the layers. It was harder than she recalled and after a moment, she remembered to lean forward slightly to ease the tension on the thread. That helped. Once she'd eased the tension, she could split the layers with one hand and lift the heddle with the other, causing the warp threads to cross again and pin the weft thread against the pole. She applied the beater to make sure it was nice and firm, then traded beater for shuttle once more.


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Heddle Thread

Postby Ashka on September 24th, 2017, 9:06 pm


Ashka slid the shuttle through in the other direction, then set it down again to ease the last of the thread through. The pinching slowness of it was a pain, but it made for a smooth and even edge to the strap or the cloth you were making. She was almost there when Chaya exploded up from her hole with a yell of triumph and another clam. Ashka's hands jerked in surprise and the thread yanked too tight. She winced at the crookedness of it, but she didn't have the skill to fix it as it was so it would have to do. She smiled crookedly at Chaya and shook her head. Had she had so much energy and enthusiasm at that age? If she had, she didn't remember it. She snorted quietly. Now she was sounding like one of those old grannies in the back cabins... She had a long way to go before she reached those years, or that wisdom.

She rocked forward to ease the tension, slid her hand in and twisted to ease the warps apart, then drew the lower warp up, crossing them over once more. She beat it into place, rocked back to reset the tension, and retrieved the shuttle. She continued to rock gently as she worked, but found that her body kept expecting to be able to rock and work to the rhythm of the waves under the ship. She'd never worked on dry land before, but now they were here - well it looked like they'd be on land for some time. They were supposed to be on land, supposed to be trying it out, seeing if they could fit there - here - better than at sea. They were supposed to be with their father though, not struggling on alone, but that hadn't worked out in the end.

Instead of thinking about that and fretting about what had happened instead, she focused her attention on her work, watching the blue strap grow under her hands, thread by thread by thread, until cramp from the careful controlled movements threatened to make the edge waver some more. Then she stopped and rubbed her hands, digging her thumbs into the protesting muscles until the cramps eased. She considered continuing as it would be good to get something finished, but her stomach growled in protest, and a glance up at the sun told her it was a long time since breakfast. Nobody was going to bring her anything here, if she wanted food, she would have to get it herself. She unhooked the backstrap from the loom, freeing herself, then detached the whole thing from the tree and rolled it up.

Chaya waved as Ashka stood up. "Dinner time?" she asked hopefully and whooped with delight at Ashka's nod. They headed back to their tent together, the handful of clams in the bucket between them. Once they arrived, Ashka stirred the fire back into life while Chaya rinsed her clams in the sea. The clean clams went into the pot. Ashka eyed the number of them. It looked a bit scant for the two of them, so she chopped some coconut meat into the pot as well as fresh water, fitted the lid into place, and left it to simmer.


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Heddle Thread

Postby Ashka on October 8th, 2017, 11:28 pm


There was some cold, cooked, rice left from yesterday, so Ashka dug that out to add to the pot once the rest of the food was cooked. She thought that the hot liquid would warm the rice back up easily enough, and using the same pot would cut down on the amount of cleaning they would need to do afterwards. She fetched clean bowls and spoons to eat with, and sang a sea-shanty softly to give her some idea of how long the clams had been cooking. Chaya joined in the singing with more enthusiasm and funny gestures than tune, and Ashka laughed hard enough that she lost track of how long. She had to resort to lifting the lid of the pot and poking at the lumpy whitish gloop inside. It seemed hot enough, so she tipped the rice in and left it a bit longer.

While they waited, and sang to try (and fail) to time the cooking, Ashka traced weaving patterns in the sand with a finger, trying to remember all the thread shifts that they involved. She wanted to do more patterned work, but a badly done pattern or a wrong pattern was worse than no pattern at all, especially for sale. A faint smell of scorching brought her attention back to the pot, and she brushed sand off her fingers and hauled the pot clear of the fire. It had congealed into a lump with shells poking out of it. She scraped it into the bowls anyway apart from a bit of the rice that had stuck to the bottom of the pot.

When she pulled the clam shells out of her portion she saw that some of them had a pretty mother of pearl sheen on the inside. They would make pretty decorations, maybe as the beaded decorations in the fringes of a scarf, or shimmering on a bag or a belt, if she could manage it. She set them carefully aside to store for future use, anyway. Eating the meal revealed to her that she had forgotten to season it in any way, so it was just the natural flavours of the clams and the coconut. Which was - passable - but blandly plain, much like her weaving. It was food, it was hot, it was edible. It would have to do. She finished, and rinsed the bowl in the sea rather than waste fresh water. Then she set her loom up again. If she didn't get distracted any further, she reckoned she could get a few more inches completed before she lost the light.


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Ashka
Spinning between two seas
 
Posts: 220
Words: 113934
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Race: Human, Mixed
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Heddle Thread

Postby Gossamer on December 12th, 2017, 1:55 am



Ashka


Experience: Weaving +5, Planning+4, Childcare+5, Observation+4, Cooking +2, Singing +1

Payoff: Carry Strap, Empty Clam Shells, Full Belly, More experience at Weaving.

Lore: Weaving: Setting Up The Loom, Weaving: Picking Out Nicely Contrasting Weft Thread, Weaving: Identifying Mistakes, Weaving: A Plain Pattern-less Piece Better Than A Poorly Woven Pattern, Childcare: Working And Watching A Child Simultaneously, Cooking: Stretching A Meal Short Of Protein With Coconut, Cooking: Rice Goes With Everything

Let me know if I forget anything!

Gossamer

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