When I mentioned weaving projects 47 and 48 I mentioned that I had plans to make a bath mat. After having finished the final panel of my (still in progress) blanket, I decided it was time to make this.
I chose one of the pick-up stick patterns I’d liked during the blanket panel making (of which more in a later blog post). I wanted the bath mat to end up being about 19 inches wide so would need 23 inches of warp threads. But my pick up stick is only 20.5 inches long. So I had to pick a pattern that I could produce using the heddle in the up position with the stick brought forward. This was because I could then have an edge that didn’t have the pattern on but which was normal plain weave.
The pattern I chose was the one in The Weavers Idea Book named “Paired warp floats in alternating blocks”. This uses two pick up sticks threaded as follows:
- Pick up stick A: 2 up, 2 down, repeated
- Pick up stick B: 2 down, 2 up, repeated
I used KnitPicks Dishie Yarn in Tugboat for the majority of the warp. And used KnitPicks Dishie Yarn in Swan for the edges and for the weft.
The weaving process was fun, and the pick up sticks work well. I started and finished with hemstitching, and then twisted all the fringe before wet finishing.
As with the last time I used the KnitPicks Dishie yarn it ended up being not as densely woven as I’d have liked. I finished it in the washing machine on a 90 degree wash with a low speed spin. This shrank the mat to being around 19 inches by 33 inches. It was still quite flimsy and didn’t seem like it would be quite absorbent enough to be a functional bath mat. I had a think about what to do about this. I thought I could just about get away with it as a towel. But I didn’t want a towel. I thought about hotel style bath mats which seem to be little more than thick towels. After a quick internet search I discovered that I could buy them for little cost. So I ordered a white one.
When I laid the weaving on top of it, I decided I could hand stitch it together and that it would just about work. I did make an observation whilst doing this. And that was in actuality I preferred the reverse to the front. See the photo above for the comparison. The front is on the left, the reverse on the right.
So today I’ve stitched it, reverse side up, to the bath mat. I’m reasonably pleased with how it looks. The whiteness of the bath mat makes the Swan look much more creamy coloured. There are more white bits amongst the variegation of the Tugboat colour so it doesn’t look completely wrong. It feels great though. The combination of the soft washed woven cotton on top of the soft bounciness of a thick hotel style bath mat feels luxurious to the toes.
And paws apparently.
I can’t wait to use it!