Handwoven Baby Wraps

In early September I got an email from a woman who’d seen my website and wanted to know if I’d weave her a custom baby wrap. I’m happy to do so, so we exchanged lots of emails to decide on pattern (hearts), color, size, and price by late in the month.

While this exchange was going on I got an email from a second woman. She and her friend wanted custom baby wraps, too, again in a hearts pattern.

Again we agreed on colors, so I combined the two requests and placed an order with The Woolery for Maurice Brassard’s 8/2 mercerized cotton. The box arrived – 32 cones of cotton and 3 cones of linen. Isn’t it pretty?!

cotton for baby wraps

In my initial planning I estimated for 21 ends per inch (EPI). The more I read and thought about it, the more I realized that is would not produce a strong enough cloth. Especially since the new issue of Handwoven arrived, with instructions for a baby wrap in rosepath, woven at 30 EPI. Thankfully, I have enough yarn of each color to do this, although it ups the number of threads from 675 to 940. Lots of warp measuring, lots of heddle and reed threading.

Oh, yeah, I had to order more heddles for my Macomber. I only have 800 heddles on this loom, so the change in EPI meant I needed an additional 140 heddles. I got an unhappy surprise when I learned that it’s pretty impossible to get flat steel heddles these days. I ordered insert eye heddles. I hope I like them okay.

Now I’m going to order a warping mill – it should make the measuring of all those threads go much quicker than my warping board.

My first warp will be for two wraps, one for the customer order and one for sampling. I need to weave an entire wrap, cut it off the loom, and wet finish it to determine strength, flexibility, and shrinkage. Only then will I know if 30 EPI is correct. I’m hoping I can go down to 28 EPI for future wraps, saving myself about 40 ends of measuring and threading. But if I can’t, I can’t — it’s only 40 threads, after all. I’d WAY prefer a high quality product than to save a few minutes here and there.

Since I ordered this yarn, I’ve had two more inquiries for baby wraps. Guess I know what I’ll be weaving for a while!

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