Want to know something really cool about weaving?
You can do the hard work of setting up the loom once and get lots of very different- looking products out of it!
The long vertical, or warp, threads are set in one pattern of color and a base pattern that governs, to a certain extent, what you can do.
But depending on what you do with the horizontal, or weft, threads, you can get multiple looks, and they can be quite different from each other.
For instance, here’s the dishtowel I showed you a while ago. Green, brown and tan stripes in a herringbone pattern. Nice! The weft (horizontal) threads are all done in the tan thread.
I finished the length I wanted for that towel and then decided to switch the way I was pressing the treadles of the loom. My second dishtowel looks like this:
It still has the green, brown, and tan stripes running vertically. I’m still using the tan thread for the horizontal weft. But now I have a bird’s eye pattern! How cool is that?
In fact, if you look carefully, you can see that, in between the first pattern and the second, there’s another simpler variation. I wove that in as a section I can cut and hem when I’m done, but I think it’s attractive in its own right.
I should also point out that, if I changed the color of the warp (horizontal) thread from tan to, say, dark green, the look would change dramatically again!
All told, there are five different patterns that can be achieved this threading of the loom, called German Bird’s Eye. I expect to do at least one more of them for the third dishtowel on this warp. Maybe I’ll change the color of the warp thread, too!
I think you know that I won’t be able to resist showing them all to you when I’m done!
So beautiful. I love seeing your weaving!
Thanks, Jackie! I’ll take that as permission to post about it more!
Lovelylovelylovely!!! It is clear you are in your happy weaving place. I personally think you should frame your distowels and hang them on the wall…too pretty to use! Have a great Weekend, xo Johanna
Oh, I’m much to practical for that! I want my dishtowels to get right to work!
I’m impressed! Such creativity, detail and patience. It must be somewhat meditative, too. Do you ever get eye strain?
Thanks, Joyce. The eye strain doesn’t seem to happen when ‘m actually weaving but, rather, when I’m “dressing” the loom–that’s the part where you put the vertical threads into the little wire heddles. I need to take a lot of breaks!
Oh wow, that’s wonderful 🙂 Although I think that weaving is probably the only craft I don’t really want to try… I look forward to seeing more of it 🙂
Yeah, I used to say that exactly……..
I always said that about weaving, too . . . I had too many other hobbies, it was too expensive to get started, I didn’t have room for a big loom, etc. Funny how all those excuses just disappeared!
I am glad you won’t be able to resist. I am very curious.
That’s what I like best about you–you’re always very curious!
Wonderful. The patterns and textures appear as if by alchemy, don’t they? Something very ordinary becomes something very precious.
It does seem like magic to me, very much, just as quilting does.
Wonderful! I can’t believe you use these extraordinary pieces as dishtowels. You don’t, do you?
Well, sure! They’re designed to be useful–they’d be sad if they just sat on the shelf, wouldn’t they?
That is so cool!
Thanks–that’s how I feel every time I weave!
Kerry, your color choices and weaving are lovely! Looking forward to seeing the towels when they come off the loom. A great resource for multiple patterns on the same warp is Marguerite Davison’s A Handweaver’s Pattern Book. A single threading can yield so many possibilities!
Thank you, Jean–that means a lot, coming from a more experienced weaver! And these very patterns came from Davison’s book–it, and Chandler’s book, are my bibles!
Just wow. That is so amazing. How long have you been weaving? Who did you learn from?
Thanks, Liz! I’ve been weaving for less than a year, after taking a class, at the local arts center, from a very good weaver. I’ve been very happy to see that it’s possible to weave credible items, even though I’m a beginner!
Isn’t it exciting! So many possibilities! I really like the second pattern and look forward to seeing some more. Oh, and yes, please do change the colour of the weft, it would be great to see what then appears!
I’ve been away from home for quite awhile and, even though it was great, I’m kind of aching to get back to this weaving and see what happens next!
So very cool, I love all the different patterns, which I imagine were invented a long time ago.
Yes, I think some of them are very old, although the book I have doesn’t always talk about the history. Maybe, at this point, no one knows who first came up with a design.
These patterns are beautiful. Making something so lovely and using it must give you great pleasure.
Absolutely! I love that it has a purpose beyond being pretty AND that it manages to be pretty, still.
lovely and changing weft colours will be like magic.
Thanks, Jean–you’re so supportive to a newbie! I haven’t done anything on this for about 2 weeks–I’ve missed it!
Each pattern is amazing! I love how you are exploring “the what happens next” of weaving. Yes please share. I agree with Johanna, these should be framed or at least displayed for their incredible beauty! I can’t wait to see more – no pressure!
The “what happens next” is the best part about weaving, I think–the possibilities are literally endless and there’s this whole analytical component that appeals to me. But no framing for them–they have work to do!
Beautiful. I have a silk woven scalf – which is very old now – and the pattern is like the second fabric you are weaving. The dyes are natural so very subtle. Someone said to me that they had hoped for a more ‘spectacular’ material but woven fabric often needs close inspection to see its true beauty.
I, too, like the subtle, rather than the showy, fabrics. My aesthetic sense is pretty understated and weaving allows for such variety!
Very impressive! Weaving your own cloth is amazing, I love how you can change the pattern so simply. You will have the best tea towels ever!
Thanks! I love making towels–does that make me weird? I love that they are practical and have a job to do!
The patterns look amazingly complex, and I can feel your excitement at making discoveries of possible variations!
As weaving patterns go, this one is pretty simple to set up and to actually weave–much simpler than it appears. And I consider that part of its appeal!
your weaving really is cool! Love those colors and designs
Thanks, LB–it feels kind of like magic when the fabric starts to add up!
Utterly delicious! xxx
Thanks, Kate–it’s a big adventure to see them develop!
I’m so impressed with this marvelous work. It looks like magic to me!
What great weaving art work,…so cool too! Waw! 😉
Thanks, Sophie–I’m having fun with it!
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