Showing posts from May, 2021

Vive la Différence -- with Differential Shrinkage

Top photo: handwoven cloth in loom state Bottom photo: detail of cloth after finishing "Loom state" describes fabric that has not yet been finished or dyed. In the textile industry, such fabric is also called "gray" or "griege."  The finishing process is particularly important to weavers because, as I like to say, "It ain't over till it's finished" (with a nod to Yogi Berra). Woven fabric isn't ready to use until it's properly washed. Unfinished or unwashed, it will retain some of the tension that it was under during the weaving process and thus won't feel or behave optimally. Differential shrinkage takes the process one step further, creating a puckered or pleated fabric, using warm water, gentle soap and lots of agitation by hand or machine. With this technique, one block or group of yarns (such as the turquoise 18/2 merino in the photos above) will full and shrink while the other (the 10/2 cotton in gold) doesn't, crea