Posted tagged ‘weaving drafts’

Networked Twill Table Runners

May 9, 2016

I wanted to design a networked twill pattern, which is decorative and symmetrical, that would be nice to use for weaving a table runner.  For inspiration and guidance, I browsed through Alice Schlein’s wonderful book, Network Drafting: An Introduction, and came across a few ideas that I wanted to use.  One idea was to use reversing points in the threading and treadling and another was to try different tie-ups.  Using Fiberworks, I designed many pattern lines and generated 8-shaft networked drafts using initial 4, the most used initial because it works well with many twills and other weaves.  Narrowing it down to one pattern and two tie-ups, I was ready to weave a couple of table runners.

The two finished table runners look almost the same when viewed from a distance, but the close-ups look very different.  As a weaver I find it very interesting to look at details, even more so than at the overall design from a distance.  Here is the finished Networked Twill Table Runner with tie-up 1:

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 1), cotton, 2016

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 1), cotton, 2016

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 1), cotton, 2016 (close-up)

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 1), cotton, 2016 (close-up)

You may notice that the twill lines appear to be on a plain weave background, and they are reversing or mirroring in the pattern.  In the drafts below, you can see this more clearly in the partial draft:

Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 1)

Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 1)

Partial Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 1)

Partial Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 1)

Here is the finished Networked Twill Table Runner with tie-up 2:

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 2), cotton, 2016

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 2), cotton, 2016

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 2), cotton, 2016 (close-up)

Networked Twill Table Runner woven on 8 shafts (tie-up 2), cotton, 2016 (close-up)

In the drafts below, the partial draft for tie-up 2 shows a pattern with less discernible twill lines, no plain weave areas, and there’s more contrast between the light and dark areas:

Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 2)

Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 2)

Partial Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 2)

Partial Draft for Networked Twill Table Runner (tie-up 2)

It’s interesting to look at a comparison of the same part of the draft with the two different tie-ups:

Networked Twill - two tie-ups (interlacement view)

Networked Twill – two tie-ups (interlacement view)

Weaving Notes:  I wove both table runners on the same natural colored 20/2 cotton warp at 40 epi (ends per inch).  The weft is also 20/2 cotton for both except for the color – one beige and the other green.  The ppi (picks per inch) are about 34 for the beige runner and about 40 for the green one.  The smaller number of picks produced a more elongated pattern in the beige runner, and the finished cloth feels a little lighter and more delicate.  The longest float in both is 5.  I used a floating selvedge to help keep the selvedges neat.  I washed them by hand, let hang to dry and steam ironed while they were still a little damp, and then hand stitched the hems.  I would like to mention that I always read my treadling drafts from bottom to top and the threading as if I’m facing the front of my Macomber rising shed loom.  This way, as I’m weaving the pattern on the loom, it looks exactly the same as in the draft.

Network drafting can be challenging at first, but as you progress it will keep you captivated with so many possibilities.  On that note, here is a scarf I recently designed and wove using network drafting.  I used a variegated colored Tencel warp and a solid colored weft.  It looks as though the warp may have been painted, but it’s not:

Networked Twill Scarf woven on 16 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2016

Networked Twill Scarf woven on 16 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2016

That’s all for now, see you next time!

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Warp Painting: Turned Taqueté & Plain Weave

December 5, 2015

A painted warp is beautiful even before you weave anything with it!  I tried warp painting with Turned Taqueté since I already explored this weave and variations of it this year.  As an afterthought I also tried it with plain weave and the awesome result turned out to be anything but plain.

My first experience with fabric and yarn dyeing and painting comes from a surface design course I took many years ago at Parsons in NYC taught by Jason Pollen.  It was then that I learned about fiber reactive dyes and the different ways that they can be used.  I later did a lot of immersion dyeing (dip dyeing) of yarns and dabbled a bit in warp painting too.  It’s only recently when I started working with Turned Taqueté that I was inclined to try warp painting again.

I use Pro (Procion) MX fiber reactive dyes that are good for cotton, Tencel and other plant based fibers as well as for silk.  They can also be used for wool but that requires a different procedure.  For my warp painting projects I basically follow the directions on Pro Chemical & Dye company’s instruction sheet, “Warp Painting on Cotton and Silk.”  I follow all the recommended safety guidelines including using a dust respirator when I’m handling powdered dyes.  In deciding which basic colors to get that can be mixed to create my own palette, I consulted Paula Birch’s superb website, “All About Hand Dyeing,” where you can find a wealth of dyeing information.

Following are photos, a draft, and notes about the two painted warp projects that I designed and wove.  One is a 12-shaft Tencel, Turned Taqueté scarf and the other one is a cotton, plain weave scarf.

Painted Warp Turned Taqueté Scarf

The finished scarf:

Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf, 12 shafts, Tencel, 2015

Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf, 12 shafts, Tencel, 2015

Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf, 12 shafts, Tencel, 2015 (close-up)

Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf, 12 shafts, Tencel, 2015 (close-up)

The scarf in progress on the loom with insets showing the painted warp in the plastic bin I used to paint it in covered with plastic wrap, and on the drying rack:

Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf, 12 shafts, Tencel, 2015 (work in progress)

Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf, 12 shafts, Tencel, 2015 (work in progress)

In many of the articles that I read about warp painting with fiber reactive dyes, it’s recommended that the warp be laid down on a table lined with plastic wrap, painting it, rolling it up in the plastic wrap and letting it “cure” or set for about 24 hours in a closed container.  Melissa’s Tangible Daydreams blog post, “Tutorial: Warp Painting,” is excellent in describing this process especially for long warps and has other very helpful information.  As you can see in the photo above, I did it a little differently – because my warp was not very long I painted it inside a long plastic bin, covered it with plastic wrap, closed the bin and let it set for 24 hours, washed it afterwards many times as recommended in the instruction sheet, and then let it hang to dry on a rack.  If you want a more precise pattern painted on the warp then you will need to stretch out the warp and use a dye thickener to prevent the colors from running into each other.  If you want the opposite effect so that the colors flow and run into each other you can dip dye sections of the warp.  I think what I did is somewhere in between these two methods.

I designed the Turned Taqueté draft shown below on 12 shafts for this scarf.

Draft for 12-shaft Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf

Draft for 12-shaft Painted Warp Turned Taquete Scarf

A few notes about how I wove this scarf:  I wound two warps of 8/2 white Tencel, one painted with several colors that I mixed as I went along and dip dyed the other warp in a light grey color.  I also dip dyed a skein of 20/2 white Tencel in the same light grey to be used as the weft.  The sett is 40 epi and about 30 ppi woven with a firm beat.  The scarf was wet finished by washing by hand, air dried completely, and then steam ironed.

UPDATE March 2016:  I am fortunate to have received the Complex Weavers award for this painted warp Turned Taqueté scarf at the Philadelphia Guild of Handweavers “Celebration of Fibers” annual member exhibit, March 11 – March 20, 2016.  The photos of the scarf are posted on the Complex Weavers website gallery awards page and the wif file can be downloaded from there.

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf

I had some leftover dye solutions and thought that I may as well use them up so I wound a warp using some white cotton slub yarn from my stash, washed it well to remove any sizing that would hinder the dyes from reacting with the yarn, and wove it up in plain weave using a thin, mauve colored rayon bouclé yarn (I think) for the weft.  The sett for this scarf is 18 epi and about 16 ppi, woven with a light beat.  After wet finishing the same way as the other scarf, I was amazed at how well it draped as plain weave can be a little stiff, but I think that the combination of these yarns and the open weave helped make it drape nicely after wet finishing.

The finished scarf:

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf, cotton & rayon, 2015

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf, cotton & rayon, 2015

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf, cotton & rayon, 2015 (close-up)

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf, cotton & rayon, 2015 (close-up)

Here’s how it looked as I was weaving it on the loom, notice how open the weave is before wet finishing:

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf, cotton & rayon, 2015 (work in progress on the loom)

Painted Warp Plain Weave Scarf, cotton & rayon, 2015 (work in progress on the loom)

And here’s the lovely painted warp for this scarf as it’s drying on the rack (I painted the colors more randomly than I did for the other scarf):

Painted Warp for Plain Weave Scarf, (drying on the rack)

Painted Warp for Plain Weave Scarf, (drying on the rack)

The inspiration for the colors I chose to use for both of these scarves came from the natural beauty in our backyard this past autumn:

Inspiring autumn colors - purple Beautyberry, red Burning Bush, yellow Pawpaw, green Pine, brown earth & blue sky

Inspiring autumn colors – purple Beautyberry, red Burning Bush, yellow Pawpaw, green Pine, brown earth & blue sky

Best wishes to all my readers for a safe and joyful holiday season and for a happy and healthy New Year.

UPDATE December 13, 2015:  This year I had the privilege of once again showing my work at the Jill Beech open studio.  Jill is a ceramic artist and sculptor whose beautiful and inspiring work I greatly admire.  There’s an article about Jill and her work in the December 9, 2015 Unionville Times where my name is also mentioned, “Art Watch: Jill Beech’s natural curiosities.”

UPDATE April 2019:    A talented weaver in Poland, Malgorzata Kielkucka from “Slavic Wraps,” sent me photos of her beautiful work using my Turned Taqueté draft and gave me permission to post these photos here:

Turned Taquete woven by Malgorzata Kielkucka, hand-dyed Tencel & cotton

Turned Taquete woven by Malgorzata Kielkucka

 

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Turned Taqueté Variations

August 21, 2015

The next step in my weaving experience with turned taqueté was to try some variations.  While I was browsing through Marian Stubenitsky’s amazingly beautiful book, Weaving with Echo and Iris, I came across an 8-shaft draft in Chapter 7 of a turned taqueté variation with a different interval – the threading is designed with an interval of 3 instead of the usual 4 as in true turned taqueté.  I designed a few drafts this way on 8 shafts, chose one I liked and wove some yardage.  I also experimented with another turned taqueté variation that was inspired by my fascination with interleaved threadings.  The drafts I designed this way looked very interesting and so this time I chose a 12-shaft draft that I liked and wove some yardage as well.  Following are photos, drafts, and notes of these two fun projects.

Turned Taqueté Variation – 8 Shafts

First, here are photos of the woven work:

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015 (blue weft version)

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015 (blue weft version)

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015 (blue weft version on the loom)

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015 (blue weft version on the loom)

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 8 shafts, Tencel, cotton & rayon, 2015 (yellow weft version)

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 8 shafts, Tencel, cotton & rayon, 2015 (yellow weft version)

And here are images of the profile draft and a partial thread-by-thread draft:

PROFILE DRAFT for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Variation

PROFILE DRAFT for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Variation

Partial thread-by-thread draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Variation

Partial thread-by-thread draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Variation

The thread-by-thread draft is generated from the profile draft.  When using Fiberworks PCW weaving software, the threading design line in the profile draft is first networked (initial 2) and then extended parallel repeat (shafts shifting by 3 not 4).  The treadling is generated by simply adding plain weave, as you can see in the partial thread-by-thread draft.  I wasn’t sure if I did this correctly so I emailed Marian and asked her about it, and she assured me that I did it well.

Additional notes:  I used the same warp to weave both the fabric with the blue weft and the fabric with the yellow weft, alternating 8/2 Tencel (variegated colors of dark browns, reds, and purples) and 2 strands together of 20/2 off-white cotton.  The blue weft is 20/2 cotton (only 1 strand, not 2 together) and the yellow weft is 20/2 rayon (also just 1 strand).  The sett is 40 epi and about 28 ppi.  I used a 20 dent reed, 2 ends per dent, but you can probably use a reed that’s not as fine and be able to avoid getting reed marks after wet finishing.  However, I would recommend weaving a sample first and resleying if necessary because in this particular variation the finished fabric looks much better if certain warp ends are sleyed together in the same dent.  For example, with my 20 dent reed I sleyed together in the same dent the ends on shafts 1&4, 2&5, etc. rather than 4&2, 5&1 etc.  I think the reason for this is the way certain warp threads slide together here.

I washed the yardage by hand, spin dried in the washer, hung to dry and steam ironed.  The pattern became a little less sharp than before wet finishing.  The first photo above of the fabric viewed from a distance was taken after wet finishing while the close-ups were taken before wet finishing.

I was going to make something functional from these fabrics, but for now I enjoy just looking at them as they are.

Turned Taqueté Variation – 12 Shafts

Here are photos of the woven work for this project:

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric for pillow woven on 12 shafts, pearl cotton warp & acryllic weft, 2015

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric for pillow woven on 12 shafts, pearl cotton warp & acrylic weft, 2015

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 12 shafts, pearl cotton warp, acryllic weft, 2015

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 12 shafts, pearl cotton warp, acrylic weft, 2015

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 12 shafts, pearl cotton warp, acrylic weft, 2015 (close-up)

Turned Taquete Variation, fabric woven on 12 shafts, pearl cotton warp, acrylic weft, 2015 (close-up)

The warp is wound with 4 different colors of 5/2 pearl cotton yarn.  You may also notice the rug in the photo, that is a summer & winter, weft-faced taqueté rug that I wove years ago:

Winding the pearl cotton warp

Winding the pearl cotton warp

I used a profile draft here too but made revisions to the final thread-by-thread draft until it looked like this:

Draft for 12-shaft Turned Taquete Variation (view with corrected aspect ratio)

Draft for 12-shaft Turned Taquete Variation (view with corrected aspect ratio)

Partial thread-by-thread draft for 12-shaft Turned Taquete Variation (interlacement view)

Partial thread-by-thread draft for 12-shaft Turned Taquete Variation (interlacement view)

As mentioned earlier, I designed this variation by interleaving two threadings, actually I interleaved the same threading with itself.  It may look like a turned polychrome taqueté, but Bonnie Inouye pointed out to me that the threading and tie-up would look different if that was the case.

Additional Notes:  I originally wove some yardage using this draft with a very close sett of 20/2 cotton but was not satisfied with how it looked.  So then I resleyed part of it with a wider sett and tied on the thicker and more lustrous 5/2 pearl cotton warp.  I really like the way the four different bright colors in the warp mix with one another when they are woven together this way.  The sett is 28 epi and about 20 ppi.  For the weft I used a lofty white 20/2 acrylic yarn that I had in my stash.  Wet finishing is the same as for the 8-shaft turned taqueté variation.  I really like the little pillow I made from this yardage!

I’m not done yet with exploring turned taqueté.  What’s next?  Maybe a painted warp?  Until then…happy weaving everyone!

UPDATE 2019:  Marian Stubenitsky, author of Weaving with Echo and Iris, is now sharing some of her beautiful drafts on handweaving.net at this link.

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Turned Taqueté!

April 6, 2015

This year I learned to design and weave turned taqueté, a warp-faced or warp-emphasis weave also called “warp-faced compound tabby” and other names as well.  I love it!  In the past I wove weft-faced taqueté rugs and now, what inspired me to explore turned taqueté is Bonnie Inouye’s article, “Turned Taqueté: an Introduction,” published by Complex Weavers in the June 2014 issue of the Complex Weavers Journal.  Bonnie’s article has everything you need to know about this versatile weave to get you started.  You can view images from her article including downloadable WIF files of the drafts (but not the text) on the June 2014 Gallery page of the Complex Weavers website.  Bonnie also contributed two 4-shaft turned taqueté drafts to handweaving.net that can also be viewed online, one is a checkerboard pattern with two clean threading blocks and the other one is a flame pattern with four overlapping threading blocks.

Keeping in mind Bonnie’s suggestions that for scarves the sett should be between twill and double weave and the weft should be much finer than the warp, I began my quest.  I wove a few samples trying out the clean checkerboard pattern first but decided to continue exploring with overlapping threading blocks that I liked better.  I ended up designing and weaving a few 8 and 12-shaft patterns this way.  In this post I’m happy to share photos, drafts and notes of an 8-shaft scarf, a photo of a placemat woven on the same threading, and photos of another scarf woven on 12 shafts.

Here are photos of the 8-shaft Turned Taqueté Scarf:

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & rayon, 2015

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & rayon, 2015

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & rayon, 2015 (detail)

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 8 shafts, Tencel & rayon, 2015 (detail)

I started by designing this Profile Draft:

PROFILE DRAFT for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf

PROFILE DRAFT for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf

The thread-by-thread draft is derived from the Profile Draft, easily generated by weaving software in several steps.  Bonnie gives clear directions about how to do this in her article.  This is how it looks using Fiberworks:

Thread-by-thread draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf

Thread-by-thread draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf

Here’s a close-up of the upper right hand section of the above draft:

Partial thread-by-thread draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf (interlacement view)

Partial thread-by-thread draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf (interlacement view)

This next draft shows the structure of turned taqueté, recognizable by the letters “T” turned on their side:

Partial thread-by-thread draft for Turned Taquete Scarf (structure view showing sideways T's)

Partial thread-by-thread draft for Turned Taquete Scarf (structure view showing sideways T’s)

My thread-by-thread draft is not easily readable as shown so I made separate threading and treadling drafts that are even larger and clearer to read when you click on them.  Note that the threading draft may be threaded as is for this scarf, but each block in the treadling draft should be repeated more than one time (I did it 3 times for this scarf) to achieve a more elongated pattern.  For example, reading the treadling draft from the bottom to the top and starting with the column on the far right, repeat three times:  1,4,2,4; then repeat three times:  1,5,2,5 and so on.  Repeat the entire treadling draft as many times as you wish depending on how long you want the scarf to be.  Here are the threading and treadling drafts including the tie-up:

Threading Draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf

Threading Draft for 8-shaft Turned Taquete Scarf

Treadling Draft for 8-Shaft Turned Taquete Scarf (repeat each block of 4 picks three times to elongate the pattern for this scarf)

Treadling Draft for 8-Shaft Turned Taquete Scarf (repeat each block of 4 picks three times to elongate the pattern for this scarf)

Notes on weaving the scarf:  I wove this scarf by using a warp of 8/2 Tencel, alternating light and dark colors (purple and off-white) with a sett of 40 ends per inch and an off-white 20/2 rayon weft at about 30 picks per inch.  The result is a warp-emphasis weave, the weft shows a little but the warp is what shows the most, and the scarf drapes nicely.  It was very easy to weave with  a light/medium beat, nice selvedges with no special threading or floating selvedges needed.  I twisted the fringes and washed the scarf by hand, let it hang to dry, and steam ironed it.  Shrinkage was about 10%.  The finished scarf is about 9-1/2 inches wide and 48 inches long plus the fringe.

Placemats woven on the same threading:  Keeping the same threading after cutting the scarf off the loom, I resleyed the warp to 30 ends per inch and tied on a new warp with a thicker, 8/4 cotton carpet warp and wove a couple of placemats using a 20/2 cotton weft at about 16 picks per inch.  I kept the treadling at only 1 repeat of each block in order to achieve a more squared pattern rather than an elongated one, repeating the first block several times for the borders.  These placemats turned out to be closer to being warp-faced than warp-emphasis – you can hardly see the weft, rather nice and sturdy, each one about 13 inches wide and 16 inches long plus an inch or so of fringe.  I like experimenting with setts, and turned taqueté is very satisfying in this regard.  Here’s a close-up and full view of one of these placemats:

Turned Taquete Placemat woven on 8 shafts, cotton, 2015

Turned Taquete Placemat woven on 8 shafts, cotton, 2015

Lastly, as a member of the Fine Threads Study Group at Complex Weavers, I challenged myself to design and weave something interesting for this year’s study and sample exchange – turned taqueté on 12 shafts:

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 12 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 12 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 12 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015 (detail)

Turned Taquete Scarf woven on 12 shafts, Tencel & cotton, 2015 (detail)

The longest float in turned taqueté is three so it’s great for weaving soft and supple scarves as well as thicker and sturdier placemats.  Bonnie mentions in her article that even chenille works well as warp with this weave.  I may try some more color experiments next time, maybe dyeing or painting a warp or trying a variation of this weave.

Hope you enjoyed looking at my work and are inspired to try turned taqueté too.  See you next time!

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Shadow Weave Samples & A Woolen Pullover

December 7, 2014

 

I wove a few yards of fabric in shadow weave using woolen yarns I found in my stash, and from this fabric I made myself a new pullover.  I haven’t made a new one in a long time because the old ones seem to last forever!  Shadow weave seemed like a good choice because its mostly plain weave structure would work well with these yarns to produce a lightweight, felted fabric after wet finishing, and also because there are so many patterns you can design in shadow weave by alternating light and dark or contrasting colors of yarns.  Shadow weave falls under the category of color-and-weave and is considered to be a color-and-weave effect.

In this post I’ll be sharing photos, drafts, and notes about a couple of shadow weave samples and the pullover.  I wove a sample in cotton yarn, liked the pattern a lot and decided to use it to weave the fabric for the pullover as well.  Here’s a photo of the sample:

Shadow weave cotton sample designed with 7 blocks and woven on 14 shafts

Shadow weave cotton sample designed with 7 blocks and woven on 14 shafts

I developed the weaving draft for this shadow weave pattern that to me looks like a plaited twill, from Fig. 586 in G. H. Oelsner’s A Handbook of Weaves (downloadable at handweaving.net), described by Oelsner as a twill “arranged to produce basket or braided effects.”  However, I did not weave this draft as a twill but used it as a 7-block profile draft:

PROFILE DRAFT - 7 blocks

PROFILE DRAFT – 7 blocks

I wrote an article in the June 2008 issue of the Complex Weavers Journal,Shadow Weave & Log Cabin,” that describes the method I used for designing shadow with independent blocks.  That’s the method I used to develop this 14-shaft thread-by-thread shadow weave draft from the 7-block profile draft:

Thread-by-thread draft for 7 blocks, 14 shafts shadow weave

Thread-by-thread draft for 7 blocks, 14 shafts shadow weave

The red and white contrasting colors work well in the woven sample to show off the plaited/braided pattern.  The colors of the woolen yarns I had available were not as contrasting, but since I wanted an understated look for my pullover I hoped it would look nice anyway and here it is:

Shadow weave woolen fabric after wet finishing, pullover, and close-up of sleeve with knitted cuff, 2014

Shadow weave woolen fabric after wet finishing, pullover, and close-up of sleeve with knitted cuff, 2014

Here are photos of the warp and a close-up of the weaving in progress on my loom to show how it looked before wet finishing:

Woolen warp yarns

Woolen warp yarns

Shadow weave in woolen yarns - close-up of weaving in progress on the loom before wet finishing

Shadow weave in woolen yarns – close-up of weaving in progress on the loom before wet finishing

Notes on weaving the fabric for the shadow weave woolen pullover:  I used a 2-ply heathery purple/blue woolen yarn (272 yds./4 oz. skein, “Regal” from Briggs & Little Woolen Mills) and a beautiful, single-ply brown/black woolen yarn, I’m not sure where I bought it years ago, the label says on it “Black Welsh, 1/5-1/2 YSW.”  These two yarns alternate in the warp and the weft at a sett of 8 e.p.i. and about the same p.p.i.  The width of the web on the loom was 28 inches and the total woven length about 3-1/4 yards.  I wet finished it in the washing machine in warm/hot water with Ivory for wool, agitated only two minutes, rinsed, and carefully spin dried it.  I put it in the dryer on low heat for about 12 minutes and then let it air dry until it was completely dry.  The end result was a slightly felted, lightweight fabric, 22 inches wide and 3 yards long.  The construction of the pullover was fairly easy because of its simple design.  I cut out the pieces, serged the raw edges, sewed the pieces together and knitted the hem, collar, and cuffs.  By the way, Laura Fry is an expert on wet finishing and I treasure her book, Magic in the Water, with real woven swatches attached, great tips, and excellent information.  For more about weaving with woolen yarns see one of my older posts, 2/2 Twill: Handwoven Woolen Wearables.

There are other methods of designing shadow weave than the method of using independent blocks of log cabin that I used to design the pattern for the red and white sample and the pullover.  The Atwater method uses alternate threads for the basic pattern and the threads that form the “shadow” are threaded on the opposite shaft.  The Powell method uses a twill-step sequence and two adjacent blocks weave together in the pattern.  Carol Strickler explains it in detail in A Weaver’s Book of 8-Shaft Patterns in Chapter 6 on shadow weave.  She writes about Mary M. Atwater who introduced shadow weave in the 1940’s and Harriet Tidball and Marian Powell who later developed other methods for designing the same fabric.

I like to design shadow weave the Atwater way with the help of my weaving software (Fiberworks PCW).  I simply design a threading and/or treadling profile and use the extended parallel repeat to generate a complete draft with the Atwater tie-up.  Below are a photo of an 8-shaft shadow weave sample and two versions of its draft that I designed and wove, similar to pattern #8-16-1 in Marian Powell’s book, 1000(+) patterns in 4, 6, and 8 Harness Shadow Weaves.  I designed the Atwater method draft first by using the extended parallel repeat and then used the shaft shuffler to rearrange the shafts to come up with the Powell method draft with the Powell tie-up.  These two methods produce the same results:

Shadow weave cotton sample woven on 8 shafts - designed with Atwater & Powell methods

Shadow weave cotton sample woven on 8 shafts – designed with Atwater & Powell methods

Drafts for 8-shaft shadow weave cotton sample - Atwater method on left, Powell method on right, two methods, same result!

Drafts for 8-shaft shadow weave cotton sample – Atwater method on left, Powell method on right, two methods, same result!

Marian Powell first published her wonderful book in 1976 without the aid of weaving software.  Some weavers find it a little hard to decipher.

Snowflakes

Season’s Greetings and a happy and healthy New Year to my readers who visit from all corners of the world!  Thank you for visiting and wandering around in my weaving universe!

Peace

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Interleaved Echo Weave…

September 10, 2014

…or non-parallel interleaved twill designs would be a more accurate way of describing what I’m working on now, as I later learned from Bonnie Inouye.  Bonnie gave a seminar called “Interleave” at the Complex Weavers Seminars 2014 which I was not able to attend, but in her usual generous manner she shared with me the handout for her presentation that answered some of my questions on this topic.

I have done some work already using parallel threadings to weave echo designs, and now I’m excited to share some of my experience with non-parallel threadings.  The first time I read about it was in Sandra Rude’s article in the Complex Weavers Journal 2006, “Adventures in Not-So-Parallel Threading, Part II.”  At that time I didn’t understand any of it, but after giving it a few tries and spending many hours using the interleave tool in Fiberworks PCW, I think I get it now.  Also, I bought Marian Stubenitsky‘s beautiful new book, Weaving with Echo and Iris, full of amazing color photographs that are a feast to the eyes.  The book has a lot of great technical information as well with chapters on various related weaves.  It’s a treasure!

I like to experiment and weave samples especially when I’m learning something new.  One of my first interleaved designs started out with two easy threadings that I interleaved to design a third one.  In Fiberworks you can copy one threading, go to the second threading and under “edit” choose “interleave paste.”  A dialogue box appears with several options and a slider that shows you how the two threadings are being interleaved as you move it to the right or to the left.

Two threadings interleaved to design a third one

Two threadings interleaved to design a third one

My complete 8-shaft draft includes the interleaved threading as shown above, a twill tie-up, an advancing point treadling, two colors alternating in the threading and one solid color in the treadling.  Here it is showing one repeat of the threading and one of the treadling:

Draft for Interleaved Twill Woven Sample showing one repeat of threading and treadling

Draft for Interleaved Twill Woven Sample showing one repeat of threading and treadling

Below are photos of the sample I wove using the draft shown above.  I used 20/2 cotton with two strands together for warp and weft with a sett of 28 epi and about the same ppi.  The warp ends alternate purple and burned orange and the weft is bluish turquoise.  I learned from sampling and from reading articles about these types of designs that the sett may be closer or may be more open and warp and weft may be of different sizes, depending on what you want to achieve.  For example, Sandra Rude in her earlier article in the Complex Weavers Journal 2005,  “Adventures in Parallel Threading, Part I,” writes that a more open sett looks more like an ordinary twill but you get more color blending because more of the weft shows.  More color blending is what I was aiming for in this sample:

Interleaved Twill Woven Sample

Interleaved Twill Woven Sample

Interleaved Twill Woven Sample (close-up)

Interleaved Twill Woven Sample (close-up)

The more I experiment with interleaved designs the more I like it.  Below is an example of a 16-shaft, non-parallel interleaved networked twill design that shows just part of a larger draft.  For short, I prefer calling it “interleaved echo weave” because back in 1996 Alice Schlein already named these types of designs with parallel threadings “echo weave.”

Interleaved echo weave partial draft - non-parallel interleaved networked twill threading and networked twill treadling

Interleaved echo weave partial draft – non-parallel interleaved networked twill threading and networked twill treadling

Finally, here are photos of 16-shaft interleaved echo weave scarves that I designed and wove with different patterns.  I used 20/2 Tencel that I dyed with fiber reactive dyes.  I was invited by our friend, Jill Beech, a ceramic artist whose beautiful work is interesting and inspiring, to show and sell some of my work at her open studio during the end of the year holiday season.  That’s where these scarves will be going.

Interleaved Echo Weave Scarf woven on 16 shafts, hand-dyed Tencel, 2014

Interleaved Echo Weave Scarf woven on 16 shafts, hand-dyed Tencel, 2014

Interleaved Echo Weave Scarf, hand-dyed Tencel, woven on 16 shafts, 2014

Interleaved Echo Weave Scarf, hand-dyed Tencel, woven on 16 shafts, 2014

Hope you enjoyed reading about my adventures in the non-parallel weaving universe.  See you next time!

Eva

UPDATE January, 2016:  Below are images of a new interleaved echo weave shawl I designed and wove:

Interleaved Echo Weave Shawl woven on 16 shafts, pearl cotton warp, cashmere/silk/merino weft, 2016

Interleaved Echo Weave Shawl woven on 16 shafts, pearl cotton warp, cashmere/silk/merino weft, 2016

Interleaved Echo Weave Shawl woven on 16 shafts, pearl cotton warp, cashmere/silk/merino weft, 2016 (close-up)

Interleaved Echo Weave Shawl woven on 16 shafts, pearl cotton warp, cashmere/silk/merino weft, 2016 (close-up)

UPDATE 2019:  Marian Stubenitsky, author of Weaving with Echo and Iris, is now sharing some of her beautiful drafts on handweaving.net at this link.

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Lace & Spot Weave Variations

May 21, 2014

Many Lace and Spot Weaves are created by warp floats and weft floats on a plain weave background.  Lace has openings or holes and spot weave has closed spots.  In my favorite book on weave structures, The Primary Structures of Fabrics, Irene Emery classifies Lace and Spot Weaves, including Huck, Lace Bronson, and Mock Leno, under float weaves derived from plain weave.  To a weaver a “float” often means a mistake, an unintentional skip of warp or weft that is longer than it should be, but floats are actually good in the case of a plain weave background patterned by areas of float weave.

Having worked with Huck Lace and Mock Leno, I wanted to try something a little different using floats on a plain weave background.  Instead of starting with a profile draft and using traditional blocks that you find with most Lace and Spot Weaves, I designed threadings and treadlings of unbroken point twills – similar to Gebrochene – with twill tie-ups and wove samples on 8 shafts and a fancier pattern on 15 shafts.  I’m happy to share photos and drafts of my work, starting with the fancy one first.

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation – 15 shafts

To weave this fancy pattern I used 10/2 pearl cotton with a sett of 24 epi and about the same ppi.  I used 15, not 16, shafts because after designing the pattern I played around with it making adjustments and it looked better this way.  Following is the final draft and photos of the woven piece after washing and ironing.  You can see that the corners of the piece are threaded and treadled as straight twill and the center areas are a combination of short and long unbroken point twills:

Draft for Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation

Draft for Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation - warp & weft floats on plain weave, pearl cotton, 2014

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation – warp & weft floats on plain weave, pearl cotton, 2014

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation - warp & weft floats on plain weave, pearl cotton, 2014 (close-up of center)

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation – warp & weft floats on plain weave, pearl cotton, 2014 (close-up of center)

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation - warp & weft floats on plain weave, pearl cotton, 2014 (close-up of corner)

Fancy Lace & Spot Weave Variation – warp & weft floats on plain weave, pearl cotton, 2014 (close-up of corner)

Lace & Spot Weave Variations – Samples on 8 shafts

I wove four samples with a sett of 24 epi using off-white 10/2 pearl cotton for the warp and a bluish color for the weft.  I wove four more samples using the same off-white for the warp and for the weft because I was curious to see how they would look when they are all white.  The amazing thing is how different the same weave appears when it’s all white.  When you hold it up to the light you can see through it and imagine lacy curtains.  Even more amazing are the areas where the yarn is deflected and curved into pleasing shapes.  Wet finishing helps the warp and weft floats to draw together to create this effect.

Following are the drafts and photos of the samples I designed.  You can easily see in the photos of the samples with the blue weft that all the warp floats are on one side of the cloth and the weft floats are on the other side.  I photographed the all-white samples on an overcast day lit from behind by the natural light of the sky so you can see the lace and spot areas better as well as the areas where the yarn is deflected.

In the drafts for the samples, note that the threading and treadling is the same for all, the only difference is in the tie-up:

Drafts for Lace & Spot Weave Variations - Samples on 8 shafts

Drafts for Lace & Spot Weave Variations – Samples on 8 shafts

Sample #1:

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #1, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #1, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #1, white warp, white weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #1, white warp, white weft

Sample #2:

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #2, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #2, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #2, white warp, white weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #2, white warp, white weft

Sample #3:

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #3, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #3, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #3, white warp, white weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #3, white warp, white weft

Sample #4:

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #4, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #4, white warp, blue weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #4 - white warp, white weft

Lace & Spot Weave Variation #4 – white warp, white weft

Until next time, best wishes to all for a great summer and happy weaving!

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Double Weave Revisited

January 29, 2014

Of the many ways of designing and weaving double weave, my favorite is loom-controlled, patterned double weave.  On my 16-shaft treadle loom I can weave up to 4 blocks of plain weave as well as network drafted double weave designs.  I have written several posts on this topic and thought it was time for another visit because it really is so much fun!

In this post I share photos, drafts and notes about my recent projects that include a 16-shaft, 4-block double weave table runner and a couple of 8-shaft, 2-block placemats.  I also share a photo of a double weave Tencel shawl that I plan on submitting to my guild’s annual exhibit in April.

Double Weave Table Runner – 16 shafts

The first project is a table runner I wove using 5/2 pearl cotton with a sett of 28 e.p.i. that turned out to have a fairly good but not perfectly balanced weave.  I happen to like it this way, but a wider sett of 24-26 e.p.i. would have helped make the rectangular areas be more square.  After twisting the fringes, I washed it by hand, spin dried in the washer but I could have rolled it in a towel too, laid flat to dry and steam ironed while it was still a bit damp.  Here it is:

Double Weave Table Runner, Pearl Cotton, 2014

Double Weave Table Runner, Pearl Cotton, 2014

As part of the preparation for this project I wove a small plain weave sample to see how the colors mix with each other:

Prep for Double Weave Table Runner - yarns, warp, and sample

Prep for Double Weave Table Runner – yarns, warp, and sample

The design started out with a profile draft that is a variation of the same profile draft I designed for the Turned Twill Table Runner that I wrote about in my previous post.  It’s a 4-block profile draft to be woven on 16 shafts:

PROFILE DRAFT for Double Weave Table Runner (4 blocks to be woven on 16 shafts)

PROFILE DRAFT for Double Weave Table Runner (4 blocks to be woven on 16 shafts)

With the magic of block substitution, my weaving software (Fiberworks PCW) generated the complete drawdown.  You can do this manually as well (it’s still magical!) by looking at the profile draft and substituting the following for each block:  first block is threaded and treadled 1, 2, 3, 4; second block 5, 6, 7, 8; third block 9, 10 ,11, 12; and fourth block 13, 14, 15, 16.  I then experimented with different colors and came up with a color scheme I liked, choosing colors that I had in 5/2 pearl cotton in my stash.  Below are different views of the thread-by thread draft.  The double weave view shows how each side actually appears, one side appears different than the other side.  The close-up interlacement view shows how the warp and weft interlace or cross each other and gives you a hint that there are 2 layers with areas in one layer exchanging places with areas in the other layer:

Draft for double weave table runner (double weave view, side 1)

Draft for double weave table runner (double weave view, side 1)

Draft for double weave table runner (double weave view, side 2)

Draft for double weave table runner (double weave view, side 2)

Draft for double weave table runner (close-up of one section, interlacement view, side 1)

Draft for double weave table runner (close-up of one section, interlacement view, side 1)

UPDATE 2017:  Bianca Geiselhart used my draft to weave two lovely placemats.  She sent me this beautiful photo and gave me pemission to post it here:

Bianca Geiselhart’s Double Weave Placemats, 2017

Double Weave Placemats – 8 shafts

The second project is a couple of placemats I wove using 20/2 unmercerized cotton, 2 strands used together as one, with a sett of 40 e.p.i.  I wove a few inches of basket/plain weave with the 20/2 cotton used singly in between mats to be turned and hand sewn as hems for a neat finish after the wet finishing process which was the same as that for the table runner.  Here’s how the placemats turned out:

Double Weave Placemats, Cotton, 2014

Double Weave Placemats, Cotton, 2014

The design for the placemats also started out with a profile draft, but this time with only 2 blocks to be woven on 8 shafts:

PROFILE DRAFT for Double Weave Placemats (2 blocks to be woven on 8 shafts)

PROFILE DRAFT for Double Weave Placemats (2 blocks to be woven on 8 shafts)

As before, block substitution generated the complete drawdown, the first block is threaded and treadled 1, 2, 3, 4 and the second block 5, 6, 7, 8.  Since this pattern looks so busy I decided to use only 2 colors to make it appear simpler and to highlight the balance between the dark and light areas.  Below is the thread-by-thread draft in double weave view of one side.  I didn’t show the other side because it looks the same except that the dark and light areas are interchanged.  The close-up of one section of the draft in interlacement view also shows the basket/plain weave I mentioned earlier that I used to weave for the hems on the placemats.  As you can see in the tie-up you need two extra treadles to do this.

Draft for Double Weave Placemats (double weave view)

Draft for Double Weave Placemats (double weave view)

Draft for Double Weave Placemats (close-up of one section, interlacement view with basket weave for the hem)

Draft for Double Weave Placemats (close-up of one section, interlacement view with basket weave for the hem)

A Challenge

OK, I asked myself, what now?  How about challenging myself to weave something interesting in double weave to enter in my guild’s show in March?  After experimenting with many drafts, I came up with a 16-shaft networked draft for double weave that looks like mosaic when viewed from a distance and also looks interesting when viewed close-up.  I liked the design and wove this Tencel shawl:

Double Weave Mosaic Shawl, Tencel, 2014

Double Weave Mosaic Shawl, Tencel, 2014

UPDATE March 31, 2014:  This shawl received “The Kathryn Wellman Memorial Award” for imaginative weaving incorporating design, color and texture at the 2014 Philadelphia Guild of Handweavers “Celebration of Fibers” exhibit.

Now it’s time to start thinking about the next challenge…see you next time!

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Turned Twill Adventures

September 24, 2013

It all began with our new dining room table that needed a functional and pretty runner.  I say functional first and pretty second because this project was going to be designed so that form follows function and not the other way around.  I must confess that sometimes I do weave things out of curiosity without thinking too much about what useful things I can make from them.  The pattern I designed for the table runner turned out to be a traditional turned twill block design woven with lustrous pearl cotton.  I liked the clean lines between the warp-float and weft-float areas in this design and wondered what a design with fuzzy lines would look like, so I tried that too.  Here are photos and drafts of the runner followed by a few more daring adventures:

Turned Twill Woven Table Runner – 4 Blocks

I wove a few samples first, one with a pearl cotton warp and a linen weft that was lovely, but I liked the colors of pearl cotton I had in my stash better.  So I wove the table runner using 5/2 pearl cotton for warp and weft with a sett of 24 epi and about 21 ppi, using a very firm beat.  A wider sett of maybe 20 or 22 epi would have been better for a more balanced weave woven with a lighter beat.  I wove a few inches of plain weave at the two ends with a thin 20/2 cotton so that I could turn and hand stitch a hem for a neat and lasting finish.  I should mention that I used a floating selvedge on each side that was not threaded through a heddle, only sleyed through the reed.  The woven piece was washed in the washer on gentle and ironed while still damp.  The finished runner is 18 inches wide by 60 inches long, perfect for our table:

Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks, pearl cotton, 2013

Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks, pearl cotton, 2013

I weave on a 16-shaft treadle loom, good for a 4-block, 3/1-1/3 turned twill pattern.  I designed a profile draft where Block A is threaded 1,2,3,4; Block B – 5,6,7,8; Block C – 9,10,11,12; and Block D – 13,14,15,16.  The treadling blocks are the same as the threading blocks.  The direction of the twill lines depends on whether you treadle top to bottom or bottom to top.  I chose to weave it so that the warp-float twills go left to right and the weft-float twills go right to left on the side that I wanted to show when I place it on the table, the way you see it in the above photo.  You can repeat the blocks in a profile draft to your liking, easily accomplished with weaving software, and with block substitution you can try it out with different weave structures.  Below are the profile draft followed by the thread-by-thread draft and a close-up of the draft that shows how the warp and weft are interlaced:

PROFILE DRAFT for Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks

PROFILE DRAFT for Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks

Draft for Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks

Draft for Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks

Close-up of Draft for Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks (interlacement view)

Close-up of Draft for Turned Twill Woven Table Runner, 4 blocks (interlacement view)

Without elaborating too much, I would describe turned twill as an uneven twill, and in this project, blocks are made up of 4-end units of 3/1 twill and 1/3 twill.  The contrast between warp-float and weft-float areas on the same side of the fabric can be used to design many kinds of patterns – from stripes to fancy figures.  Sometimes turned twill is referred to as twill damask.  Irene Emery describes it in great detail in her book, The Primary Structures of Fabrics.  To learn more about blocks and profile drafts, I recommend Madelyn van der Hoogt’s book, The Complete Book of Drafting for Handweavers, Chapter 5: From Blocks to Units.  I think Madelyn also has a video out about block weaves.  I have a few past posts with profile drafts, you can find them if you go to my home page and click on “Profile Drafts” in the Categories cloud.

Networked Twill Woven Fabric – Turned Twill with Fuzzy Borders

After the table runner project, I continued experimenting with turned twill but digressed and kept only the tie-up and instead of blocks I tried networked threadings and treadlings.  I liked the fuzzy borders, very different than the clean cut ones in traditional block turned twill, and the longest float was still only 3.  I also read an article by Alice Schlein in Handwoven magazine in 2001, “Network Drafting – Turned Twills on Eight Shafts,” that inspired me to experiment with this idea.  Below is a photo of some yardage I wove from one of my designs using 20/2 cotton in alternating dark and light colors in the warp and a solid color for the weft, at 42 epi and about 40 ppi.  I washed the yardage by hand and ironed it while it was still damp.  The yardage is a bit narrow in width, about 16 inches, not really functional for my purposes, but hey, it’s kind of interesting and I may use it for next year’s Fine Threads Study Group at Complex Weavers, cut into swatches for members of my group:

Networked Twill Woven Fabric, cotton, 2013

Networked Twill Woven Fabric, cotton, 2013

Below are the drafts for the fabric.

Draft for Networked Twill Woven Fabric

Draft for Networked Twill Woven Fabric

Close-up of Draft for Networked Twill Woven Fabric (interlacement view)

Close-up of Draft for Networked Twill Woven Fabric (interlacement view)

More Turned Twill Drafts – Variations

These are drafts I like but haven’t tried to weave.  This one with a 5-end advancing twill threading and treadling illustrates the fuzzy borders between the warp-float and weft-float areas, and the longest float is 3:

Draft for 5-end Advancing Twill

Draft for 5-end Advancing Twill

Here’s an 8-shaft, traditional 2 block draft and the dramatic change that you see when color-and-weave is used on the same draft – 4 dark and 4 light ends alternating in warp and weft:

Draft for 8-shaft, 2 block, Turned Twill with color-and-weave version

Draft for 8-shaft, 2 block, Turned Twill with color-and-weave version

And here’s the same draft as the previous one, with some fun colors for the color-and-weave effect:

Draft for 8-shaft, 2 block, color-and-weave Turned Twill

Draft for 8-shaft, 2 block, color-and-weave Turned Twill

Hope you enjoyed reading about my Turned Twill adventures.  Just one more thing…

Something Completely Different:

E-Reader Case, Crochet, pearl cotton, 2013

E-Reader Case, Crochet, pearl cotton, 2013

OK, this is not woven, but I just love this little crochet case with the little button that I made for my e-reader.  It’s just simple continuous single crochet with 5/2 pearl cotton going round and round and then back and forth for the flap, finished with a double crochet edging.  It’s sitting on a shadow weave mat so there is some weaving in the picture!

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Ikat-Inspired Twill Studies

April 28, 2013

The Fine Threads Study Group at Complex Weavers has a sample and study exchange each year.  As a member of this group I’m happy to share my study for this year in this post.

As I was browsing through the samples from the 1990 Complex Weavers Swatch Exchange, I came across Verda Elliott’s sample and study, “A Touch of Ikat.”  Verda has passed away in 2009 but her inspiring work lives on.  In her study, Verda combined two tie-up and treadling sequences on the same threading for a combined draft and wove the samples on her 24 shaft compu dobby loom.  I liked the idea of an ikat effect without having to do any dyeing/resist dyeing that is used in true ikat.  I tried her method but had to make a few changes in order to weave a sample on my 16 shaft treadle loom, at times having to step on two treadles at the same time.  I wove a sample using 10/2 cotton, the same size yarn as what Verda had used (see the very last photo and Draft 4 below).  This sample looked fine but when I tried it again with a finer 20/2 cotton the effect was too subtle, barely noticeable unless you were viewing it up close.  So for my Fine Threads Study samples I decided to try a different approach.

I experimented with networked twills and color placement and found that vertical sections of alternating light and dark colors in the warp and a solid color in the weft produced interesting ikat-like patterns.  Here’s the piece in progress on the loom with an interesting air brushed-like quality as well:

Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill, rayon & cotton, 2013

Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill, rayon & cotton, 2013

Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill, rayon & cotton, 2013 (detail)

Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill, rayon & cotton, 2013 (detail)

I used 20/2 rayon for the warp and 20/2 cotton for the weft at a sett of 42 epi and 42 ppi.  The piece was washed by hand, air dried and steam ironed with overall shrinkage of about 5%.  Now I have to cut a lot of it up into samples for the group swatch exchange!

The width of the vertical stripes is important, if it’s too wide the effect is less striking, and when the entire warp is a solid color the effect is different as shown in Draft 1:

Draft 1 - Networked Twill, solid colors in warp and weft

Draft 1 – Networked Twill, solid colors in warp and weft

Draft 2 below is what I designed and used to weave my piece.  It has the same threading, treadling and tie-up as Draft 1, but the color interaction in warp and weft give it a very different appearance.

Draft 2 - Networked Twill, color stripes in warp, solid color weft

Draft 2 – Networked Twill, color stripes in warp, solid color weft

Draft 3 below is a variation on a theme, it’s the same in all respects as Drafts 1 and 2 except for the slight difference in width of the vertical stripes and the various color combinations:

Draft 3 - Networked Twill, various color combinations

Draft 3 – Networked Twill, various color combinations

As I mentioned in my introduction, Verda Elliott’s 1990 study, “A Touch of Ikat,” was my inspiration for further study that led me to design and weave the Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill piece above.  I originally began my study by weaving this sample according to Verda’s method using 10/2 cotton at 28 epi:

Ikat-Inspired Twill woven sample

Ikat-Inspired Twill woven sample

Draft 4 - Advancing repeat threading and two treadling sequences combined

Draft 4 – Advancing repeat threading and two treadling sequences combined

UPDATE November 8, 2013:  Several weavers have asked me to send them the WIF file for the Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill draft.  One weaver, Mahesh Deshmukh, used it to create his own beautiful designs and sent me these images (posted here with permission):

Mahesh's Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill Designs

Mahesh’s Ikat-Inspired Networked Twill Designs

UPDATE February, 2014:  I rewrote this post as an article that has been published in the February 2014 issue #104 of the Complex Weavers Journal with the same title, “Ikat-Inspired Twill Studies.”   Most of the articles in this amazing issue focus on loom-controlled shibori and ikat and I’m thrilled that my article about twills that look like ikat is included.  Complex Weavers posted images and downloadable WIF files of the drafts from my article as well as images and some drafts from the other articles from this issue that may be viewed at this link.

UPDATE January, 2020:  I wrote another blog post about my new adventures with this interesting topic:  Ikat-Inspired Twills Revisited.

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