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Jun 04

Benjamin’s Outlandish Tartan Scarf

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Recently I had the pleasure of working with the Lhasa Wilderness yarn from Bijou Basin Ranch in a few of their new colors from their Outlandish colorway series which was inspired by Outlander, a book and recent TV series based in the Scottish Highlands.

Tartan scarf with color ways inspired by the Outlander TV series

When I was thinking of projects for this yarn I immediately knew that I had to weave a tartan-plaid with it. (My Scottish ancestry is generations back and not well recorded, so I decided it was best to not weave a traditional tartan that I didn’t have claim to.)

To create my plaid, I arranged my warp threads to make sure I used the same number of each color in the pattern. Not only did this give me peace of mind that I would use the same amount of each color of yarn, it gave me a visually balanced scheme. I wasn’t worried about anything but the looks of the finished tartan. Using a weaving program allowed me to move colors around in the design without committing to a final setup.

Equipment:

Baby Wolf Loom – This could be done on any of our floor looms or rigid heddle looms.

Tartan weaving draft with yarns in the colors of Skye, Watercress, Laoghaire, and Lallybroch

Yarns with original draft. From left to right: Skye, Watercress, Laoghaire (yellow–but it looks orange here), Lallybroch.

Yarn:

Lhasa Wilderness from Bijou Basin Ranch, 130 yards each in the following colors

31 – Laoghaire (Lira) (yellow)

43 – Watercress (bright green)

44 – Lallybroch (dark green)

52 – Skye (blue)

Warp:

80 ends total at 3 yards long.

Sett:

12 epi for plain weave (If weaving in a 2/2 twill sett the warp at 16 epi and increase your yarn yardage).

Structure:

Plain weave.
I set up the loom as a straight draw, using 4 shafts just to distribute my heddles evenly. This also allowed me to have the option of doing a twill structure if I wanted to.
Plainweave draft for tartan scarf

Repeat two times.

Weaving:

Weave about 2.5 yards following the same color sequence as in the warp.

Finishing:

Using four groups of two threads, make “four stranded flat braids” all the way across your warp.

Using four groups of two threads, make "four stranded flat braids" all the way across your warp.

I found that my selvedges weren’t up to snuff, so I chose the dark green (Lallybroch) and single crocheted a border around the edge. I also found that this added a more “masculine” edge to the scarf, making it feel more substantial.

Crocheted border on outlander tartan scarf

Detail of crocheted border on each side of the scarf

Helpful Hint: When I use my Baby Wolf, I normally use my lease sticks to keep my warp cross because I generally have a pretty wide warp. For this project I had a much skinnier warp than normal, and I felt that my lease sticks would be too large. I had an “aha” moment when I looked over and saw my Variable Dent Reed on my shelf. I took out the individual dents, and slid the frame around the cross. I re-screwed the frame together and then lashed it onto my loom.

A variable dent reed used on a baby wolf loom for securing the warp

1 Comment

  1. slkunze
    June 5, 2015 at 4:18 pm ·

    And Mr. Krudwig chose an outstanding color combination for his Outlandish tartan scarf. Great work!