Not Your Granny’s Overshot

click to enlarge

I never thought that I liked overshot. Really I didn’t. They’ve always seem so fuddy duddy, dull colored. Well, just boring.

I never liked the large patterns where you have to have an entire heavy coverlet before you can see the pattern.

And why did they all have to be brown? And scratchy?

The last few weeks have really changed my mind about this weave structure. I am absolutely loving this right now, even the two shuttle dance. The foot work is still a bit awkward because it’s not my normal walking treadling sequence — more like a double tap.

So why the change of heart? One word COLOR! I love how the variegated yarn moves through the fabric. I love how the colors make the patterns pop. And such an easy thing too.

I think the other is reason that I am enjoying this is because I have chosen small patterns. (They are called miniatures in the pattern books.) I love them. They remind me of the mosaic tiles that I saw while in Turkey. Lots of small repeats for a big impact. Love it.

Both of the overshot pieces in the past couple of weeks have been woven with my own  handspun yarn. The Beggar’s Bag was woven with BFL singles. This one here was a 2-ply (merino/bamboo and silk). Both were spun into fingering weight yarn. Both yarns have lovely shine and drape to them. And what a difference that makes.

Okay. I guess that makes three things that make this different from my imagined dated overshot pieces: color, pattern, and fiber.

You will see some inconsistencies in the fabric. They are not weaving mistakes (I cropped those out of the photo). They are where my handspun got a little too thin/skinny, thus did not fill the space as they should, even after wet finishing.

There’s nothing like actually using your own handspun yarn to know what you need to improve upon!

By the way, the yarns were produced by following the advice from two spinning teachers: Kathryn Alexander on how to spin singles for weaving and Deb Menz on how to spin and ply (choose fibers to ply with) to get the yarn/effect you want. Deb will be teaching her Spin for Color workshop at SOAR this year. I highly recommend it.