Weaving Huck Lace!

I know how to do Filet Crochet, it’s very open, lacy, looks beautiful using fine yarns, and patterns can be easily designed on graph paper.  So, I thought why not try to weave something like this.  From the many types of lace weaves, I chose Huck Lace.  I spent hours designing 7-block profile drafts for Huck and plain weave blocks that I could weave on my 16-shaft treadle loom.

Although a main subject on a background is nice, I was really trying to design a profile draft with a balance between the Huck and the plain weave areas so that the negative and positive spaces would be equally important.  This way the patterns formed by the Huck areas as well as the plain weave areas would be interesting.

I came up with a profile draft I thought would work, and what started out to be a lacy shawl ended up as a curtain because I love the way it looks when light passes through it.  Following are images, drafts and other details about it.

Huck Lace Curtain (pearl cotton) 2010

Huck Lace Curtain (pearl cotton) 2010 (detail 1)

Huck Lace Curtain (pearl cotton) 2010 (detail 2)

Profile Draft and Partial Weaving Draft:

After designing the profile draft, I used the “block substitution” feature in my weaving program to generate a complete thread-by-thread weaving draft.  But you don’t really need a full thread-by-thread draft; just follow the block order in the profile draft.  For example, if you look at the Profile Draft and Partial Weaving Draft below, reading right to left and top to bottom, the first block is threaded and treadled as:  1-6-1-6-1, 2-5-2-5-2, 1-6-1-6-1; the next block as:  2-7-2-7-2, 1-8-1-8-1, 2-7-2-7-2; and so on.

PROFILE DRAFT for Huck Lace Curtain

Partial Weaving Draft for Huck Lace Curtain

Huck Lace Unit:

I used a 5-thread Huck in this project where warp floats alternate with weft floats.  The image and draft below show how one full unit of this type of Huck can be threaded and treadled repeatedly on 4 shafts as 2-3-2-3-2, 1-4-1-4-1.  For my project I used 1-1/2 units per block.

Huck Lace Sample and Draft

For more on Huck Lace using 4 shafts there are two superb articles on Weavezine:  Laura Fry’s “Woven Lace: Huck on a Twill Threading” and Michele Belson’s “Color Gamps” that has a draft for “Huck Lace Blocks in Plain Weave Ground.”

And my favorite book on the subject is:  Huck Lace (The Best of Weaver’s), edited by Madelyn van der Hoogt.

Weaving Notes:

I wove a few samples at first trying out different setts and yarns.  The winner was 20/2 pearl cotton sett at 30 e.p.i., sleyed 2 per dent in a 15-dent reed.  This sett is loose compared to 36 e.p.i. that I often use for plain weave with this type of yarn, but looser works well in this case.

With an added inch or so of plain weave at the selvedges, the width on the loom was about 26″ with a finished width of 24″ after hand washing and steam ironing while still lightly damp.  I wove enough yardage to make curtains for a small window.

There was one other sample I really liked where I used a very fine 64/2 merino silk yarn.  I’m thinking of doing a Huck Lace project with this.  Stay tuned.

Update (February 2011):  I wove two Huck Lace Shawls using the 64/2 merino silk yarn with a sett of 45 e.p.i., they feel really luxurious.  Here’s a picture:

Huck Lace Shawl, silk & merino wool, 17″x68″, 2011

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20 Comments on “Weaving Huck Lace!”

  1. 2crazy4books2 Says:

    Eva – I absolutely love huck lace. It is a very versatile structure. I love the plain weave pattern interspersed with the lace. [Photo 1] It is exquisite!!!
    I agree – Madelyn’s book on Huck Lace is a must for learning how to “think” this weave structure.
    I haven’t seen Laura Fry’s book but I will be sure to look for it. I am constantly in awe of your adaptations and creations!
    Thanks for sharing – it is positively inspiring!
    Happy Weaving!
    PS: Now YOU need to write a book :)
    [with complete pattern drafts too!]

    • evasweaving Says:

      Wow, thank you Janis! Laura Fry has an article about it on Weavezine, not a book, just click on the link to read it. As for writing a book, this blog is my book!


  2. Laritza Says:

    This is too pretty!

  3. buyathread Says:


    The Huck Lace weaving design is beautiful, and, like all of your weaving, flawlessly made. It’s always a pleasure to see and admire your work.

    Weave on!


  4. Gwendolyn Says:

    This is really lovely. I’m partial to Huck Lace. So glad you found it satisfying!

  5. Chrystal Says:

    This is absolutely beautiful – lovely -I would be forever grateful
    to receive the WIF file – I have an AVL and use a Mac but can make it work.

    Your work is just special and inspires me to do something similar with
    huck lace. I am so glad I saved your e-mail.

    Thanks for sharing –


    • evasweaving Says:

      Thank you, Chrystal. I will send you the WIF file, it should work with a Mac. Since you have an AVL I’ll convert the tie-up to a lift plan mode and send it to you like that.

      My mission for doing this blog was to share whatever I learned so far in my weaving life with other weavers. The feedback I’m getting is truly rewarding.


  6. valerie Says:

    What a beautiful, clean design!! I can see how the pearl cotton shows off the structure. Am wondering if you tried tencel and how those samples were?

    • evasweaving Says:

      Thanks, Valerie. The pearl cotton gives it a crisp feel and it has a silk-like sheen that is beautiful. I also tried an unmercerized cotton that is soft with no sheen and a very thin merino/silk sett much closer that is very interesting. I haven’t tried tencel but it would be perfect for a shawl because it’s so much like silk – soft, shiny, luxurious.

  7. kathy looper Says:

    OMGOSH! How beautiful! I want to make some, too! Thank you for the detailed instructions and the additional notes in the comments section. I love reading about your projects because not only are your projects incredibly beautiful but they also match your spirit of generosity. Thank you for the great post.

  8. Peggy Hollen Says:

    This is a very beautiful weave. I’m not sure I’m experienced enough to try it, but I hope to be one day. I would love the detailed WIF file to look at and hope just a bit of it sinks in. Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful talent.

    • evasweaving Says:

      Thank you, Peggy. I will send you the WIF file of the thread-by-thread draft and when you compare it to the Profile Draft above you will better understand the relationship between these drafts. I describe profile drafts in some of my other posts with links to other sites that have more info about it. I would also recommend Madelyn van der Hoogt’s book, The Complete Book of Drafting for Handweavers, that explains it all. I’m sure you will be experienced enough to weave it one day, sooner than you think!

  9. lizzy Says:

    eva…it is really nice..i love seeing the close up pictures you feel like you can touch it..it makes me want to learn to weave…and you know i love curtains…beautiful work anbu lizzy

    • evasweaving Says:

      Lizzy, thank you, especially coming from you since you’re a professional at making “window treatments” aka curtains. Your work is amazing!

  10. Marlene Rennaker Says:

    I would like a copy of the wif file for the huck lace curtain. It is beautiful and you are so kind to share it with the world.


    • evasweaving Says:

      I will be happy to send you the wif file, thank you for your comment.

      In case anyone might not know what a WIF file is, it’s a “weaving information file” that can be opened by any weaving program that supports this type of file. Weavers with different weaving programs can send each other WIF files and be able to open them.

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