hot or cold?


jody Williams
 

Finishing linen


The correct way to finish linen is not a new controversy.  Vavstuga, the Swedish weaving school in Massachusetts ONLY uses cold.  They have a couple of cold mangels.  Others advocate very hot pressing.  Laura Fry had a workshop several years ago called The Magic is in the Water, which was all about finishing one’s weaving.  She told a story about being caught in Norway (I think it was Norway) where the pressed linen with very hot irons.  They pointedly asked her if she favored Swedish (cold) or Norwegian (hot).  She said ,“I’m from Canada, and I do whatever I want”.

 

My best advice is to avoid heat.  I took a week at Vavstuga with Becky Ashendon  and became a convert to cold. Since you probably don’t have a cold mangel in your basement, try this: Dry it on the line and then run it in the air fluff cycle with about 5 or 6 felt balls. They are easy to make if you are a spinner and have fleece around; needle felt a bunch into about a grapefruit sized ball and then run it with a wash.  They will come out tennis ball size and will do a nice job of avoiding wrinkles and fluffing towels.  Otherwise, even Walmart sells them.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Jody Williams
1245 W Calzada Court
Tucson AZ 85704

520 505-4468
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~







Laura Fry <laura@...>
 

The story is actually...

I was having a conversation with a Swede and a Norwegian.  The Swede maintained that - according to the grandmothers - heat should never ever be applied to linen, while the Norwegian said that they boiled theirs.  When asked for my input I said that as a Canadian I did what I wanted.  :)

So yes, I will use heat, but not the highest setting on the iron, but the lowest.  I also cold mangle.  It depends.

I will use the dryer as the tumbling action will soften the fibre, but so will compression.

There are many ways to achieve desired results.  What someone uses will depend on their circumstances - the equipment they have to use, the space they have to do it in.

For Magic in the Water, the linen samples were, in fact, cold mangled.  The finer samples were cold mangled using Kerstin Fro:berg's large mangle in Sweden.  The heavier weight ones were done using a large plastic pipe and body weight.  Mainly because I could not afford another trip to Sweden to use Kerstin's mangle.

It is not recommended that linen cloth have a fringe unless the fringe is in some way protected.

OTOH, a neighbour asked for advice on how she should wash the linen tablecloth that had been made by her grandmother, mother and aunt in Poland.  Her mother and aunt had grown, processed and spun the linen, and their mother had woven it.  Over the years Kay had used it for special occasions and her mother had always washed it for her.  When her mom died, she had no idea how to best do this and asked for help.

I was intrigued because it was fairly large, all woven in one piece so the loom used had to have been fairly wide.  It had been hemstitched on the loom and the fringe left loose, to wear into a short and by that time, somewhat degraded line of linen fibre.  It was grey in colour, so likely dew retted, and Kay talked about remembering that it was the job of the children to guard the linen laid out on the grass to dry, protect it from the free range geese.

Over the years her mother probably carefully washed it by hand in the tub, then hung it to dry on the clothesline, ironed it and rolled it onto a cardboard tube.

So we talked about how she could go about doing this for herself.  She seemed to enjoy remembering her early years in Poland and sharing the work of her family with me.  And I loved to hear about it from her.

cheers,
Laura Fry
http://laurasloom.blogspot.com (where I frequently blog about things like wet finishing - use the link on the right hand side)

Finishing linen


The correct way to finish linen is not a new controversy.  Vavstuga, the Swedish weaving school in Massachusetts ONLY uses cold.  They have a couple of cold mangels.  Others advocate very hot pressing.  Laura Fry had a workshop several years ago called The Magic is in the Water, which was all about finishing one’s weaving.  She told a story about being caught in Norway (I think it was Norway) where the pressed linen with very hot irons.  They pointedly asked her if she favored Swedish (cold) or Norwegian (hot).  She said ,“I’m from Canada, and I do whatever I want”.

 

My best advice is to avoid heat.  I took a week at Vavstuga with Becky Ashendon  and became a convert to cold. Since you probably don’t have a cold mangel in your basement, try this: Dry it on the line and then run it in the air fluff cycle with about 5 or 6 felt balls. They are easy to make if you are a spinner and have fleece around; needle felt a bunch into about a grapefruit sized ball and then run it with a wash.  They will come out tennis ball size and will do a nice job of avoiding wrinkles and fluffing towels.  Otherwise, even Walmart sells them.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Jody Williams
1245 W Calzada Court
Tucson AZ 85704

520 505-4468
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~








Sara von Tresckow
 

Boiling linen in the WASH is standard all over Europe. It is the ironing
that can be done hot or cold. The cold mangel DOES put the nicest finish on
the fabric, though it won't kill it to use a steam iron.
What leaves me wondering, though, it all the discussions about "soft" linen.
When I lived in Europe, no one ever made a big deal about "softness" -
smoothness, crispness, coolness, maybe, but nobody was running around trying
to make their linen fabric feel like "cotton". If people wanted that cottony
softness, they either made half linen using mostly a cotton warp and linen
weft, or they simply made cotton fabric.
I now have two sets of linen bedding - love it. BUT it will always be
smooth, less drapey, not as warm, and not as soft as cotton - UNTIL it is
shortly before disintegrating.
I have never understood why folks here in N. America insist on having their
linen "feel as soft as cotton" when that is really not one of the better
properties of linen.

Sara von Tresckow, Fond du Lac, WI
sarav@woolgatherers.com
Author of “When a Single Harness Simply Isn’t Enough”
http://www.woolgatherers.com Dutch Master Loom/Spinning Chairs/Öxabäck
Looms, visit us in Fond du Lac or contact us about your weaving/spinning
needs


Doreen McLaughlin
 

try this: Dry it on the line…

            Not in my neighborhood. It’s against the covenants to have an outside line to dry clothes. The HOA will be over quickly to assess and collect a fine as soon as it’s spotted.

Doreen


Sara von Tresckow
 

It may be time to challenge the HOA attitude on this.

 

Sara von Tresckow, Fond du Lac, WI

sarav@...

Author of “When a Single Harness Simply Isn’t Enough”

http://www.woolgatherers.com Dutch Master Loom/Spinning Chairs/Öxabäck Looms, visit us in Fond du Lac or contact us about your weaving/spinning needs

 

From: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io> On Behalf Of Doreen McLaughlin
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 4:16 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

try this: Dry it on the line…

            Not in my neighborhood. It’s against the covenants to have an outside line to dry clothes. The HOA will be over quickly to assess and collect a fine as soon as it’s spotted.

Doreen


Joe P
 

Hi Everyone and Doreen 

Doreen I read your post. I just can't stop laughing. I am laughing so hard my eyes are watering.

In my neighborhood. a person will cruise the back alley in a yard, and steal the clothesline, with all of the clothing on it. I was crossing the street to my house and a bicycle came flying out of the back alley and looked like it was being ridden by a basket of wash. 

Keep Weaving 
Joe Bear in WI U.S.A. 


From: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io> on behalf of Doreen McLaughlin <doreen@...>
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 4:15 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?
 

try this: Dry it on the line…

            Not in my neighborhood. It’s against the covenants to have an outside line to dry clothes. The HOA will be over quickly to assess and collect a fine as soon as it’s spotted.

Doreen


Linda Schultz
 

That's a good point about wanting "soft" linen. I love the hand of linen, which starts out crisp and changes as its used. If it's something for my own use, the linen gets pressed or mangled and then gets to that point through use. It's only for tea towels that I am selling that I soften them a bit in the dryer. My perception is that the average consumer is unused to linen's crisp feel, and wants a tea towel more like the ones they buy in the store.

But I would agree with the original poster that you would probably want a baby blanket to be softened before use.

Linda


Susan Lee-Bechtold
 

Doesn’t Lorna live near?

 

From: weavetech@groups.io [mailto:weavetech@groups.io] On Behalf Of Joe P
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 4:38 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

Hi Everyone and Doreen 

 

Doreen I read your post. I just can't stop laughing. I am laughing so hard my eyes are watering.

 

In my neighborhood. a person will cruise the back alley in a yard, and steal the clothesline, with all of the clothing on it. I was crossing the street to my house and a bicycle came flying out of the back alley and looked like it was being ridden by a basket of wash. 

 

Keep Weaving 

Joe Bear in WI U.S.A. 


From: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io> on behalf of Doreen McLaughlin <doreen@...>
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 4:15 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

try this: Dry it on the line…

            Not in my neighborhood. It’s against the covenants to have an outside line to dry clothes. The HOA will be over quickly to assess and collect a fine as soon as it’s spotted.

Doreen


Susan Lee-Bechtold
 

Sorry, that was sent to the wrong person, Joe made me laugh so hard.-Su

 

From: weavetech@groups.io [mailto:weavetech@groups.io] On Behalf Of Susan Lee-Bechtold via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 6:58 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

Doesn’t Lorna live near?

 

From: weavetech@groups.io [mailto:weavetech@groups.io] On Behalf Of Joe P
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 4:38 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

Hi Everyone and Doreen 

 

Doreen I read your post. I just can't stop laughing. I am laughing so hard my eyes are watering.

 

In my neighborhood. a person will cruise the back alley in a yard, and steal the clothesline, with all of the clothing on it. I was crossing the street to my house and a bicycle came flying out of the back alley and looked like it was being ridden by a basket of wash. 

 

Keep Weaving 

Joe Bear in WI U.S.A. 


From: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io> on behalf of Doreen McLaughlin <doreen@...>
Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 4:15 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

try this: Dry it on the line…

            Not in my neighborhood. It’s against the covenants to have an outside line to dry clothes. The HOA will be over quickly to assess and collect a fine as soon as it’s spotted.

Doreen


Linda Schultz
 

Same in my neighborhood.

But...the state passed a "Right-to-dry" law which specifically states that the use of clotheslines and other renewable energy methods supersedes HOA covenants. I have not put it to test yet - mostly because I have no place to put up a clothesline. 


Inga Marie Carmel
 

I agree with you 100%, Sara. I don’t get this preoccupation with softness at all. 

marie

Inga Marie Carmel
An interesting plainness is the most difficult and precious thing to achieve -  Mies van der Rohe

“i have never understood why folks here in N. America insist on having their
linen "feel as soft as cotton" when that is really not one of the better
properties of linen.”


Inga Marie Carmel
 

How I handle linen. I learned in sweden and well, they boiled it. 

I tend to wash in the machine big pieces on hot, soak and hand wash smaller or more delicate pieces. I HATE what dryers do to it. Takes all the lovely linen-ness and shine away!  If it’s a towel i hang them to dry. If it’s a table piece I put it on a hard, smooth surface and absolutely plaster it down with water spray. i can smooth  a lot of the wrinkles out by hand that way. I don’t have a mangle, but I’m eyeing mom’s (and she’s 96).  I do have a steam press and can get a pretty good result using that. High setting, no steam but slightly damp. 

We all want different things from our cloth, but that’s how I do it. 

marie

Inga Marie Carmel
An interesting plainness is the most difficult and precious thing to achieve -  Mies van der Rohe


jmgriffiths
 

That’s what I do – lay it flat soaking wet and the linen runners and placemats come out really nice and do not need any ironing. I read somewhere that they did that In the past laying the wet linen on glass. Janice in BC

 

From: weavetech@groups.io <weavetech@groups.io> On Behalf Of Inga Marie Carmel
Sent: April 11, 2020 6:29 PM
To: weavetech@groups.io
Subject: Re: [weavetech] hot or cold?

 

How I handle linen. I learned in sweden and well, they boiled it. 

 

I tend to wash in the machine big pieces on hot, soak and hand wash smaller or more delicate pieces. I HATE what dryers do to it. Takes all the lovely linen-ness and shine away!  If it’s a towel i hang them to dry. If it’s a table piece I put it on a hard, smooth surface and absolutely plaster it down with water spray. i can smooth  a lot of the wrinkles out by hand that way. I don’t have a mangle, but I’m eyeing mom’s (and she’s 96).  I do have a steam press and can get a pretty good result using that. High setting, no steam but slightly damp. 

 

We all want different things from our cloth, but that’s how I do it. 

marie

 

Inga Marie Carmel

An interesting plainness is the most difficult and precious thing to achieve -  Mies van der Rohe

 


Eve Alexander
 

Hi Joe,

I had things stolen off my line.  It was called 'snow dropping' in my area.

Eve


Fran Osten
 

The one thing I learned from a not so nice grandmother-in-law is to smooth wet cloth napkins or towels on the smooth top surface of the washer or dryer  You can actually layer multiple ones atop one another and if you are careful about smoothing each they come out as if ironed!! Perfect for me as I hate to iron. Wish I could only do that on the beautiful tablecloths inherited from my mother!  It cost a fortune the last time I took one to be commercially laundered. 


Sally O
 

Laura,

I got to see Kerstin's AMAZING, gigantic mangle in operation last summer when I was in Sweden.
Meeting her in person was one of the highlights of my trip!