Wednesday, January 25, 2012

"Something New"

Actually, I should have titled this "Something's New".

The 1st thing new to me was using this home made temple to help make sure my scarf (or in this case, perhaps a small runner) stay an even width with no draw in at the sides. The temple idea came from Sara and Hans of Woolgatherers Weaving Shop, in Fond du lac, WI, where I bought my Oxaback floor loom. I should say, it came from their website,, under "Free Temple Plans". I did tweak it though, by using mitten clips and fishing weights instead of what was suggested.

It is a very simple and ingenious idea, AND gravity does the work. It is MUCH easier to use than my larger and wider metal it doesn't have those nasty sharp teeth! ;) The temple is moved along the piece as the weaving progresses. It wouldn't be possible to use this temple when weaving on all looms. On some looms, the support bars are low on the sides and the temple line/weight would draw the weaving down on an angle too steeply.

The 2nd thing new to me is another home made idea, and my thanks goes to Juanita, of Vavning Weaving Studio, in Shopiere, WI, for this little idea. Using a piece of flat styrofoam, cut from the bottom of a meat tray, and a stick pin, allows a weaver to keep track of their pattern without writing down each treadling sequence. write it down once, then keep track of where you are by moving the stick pin. ;) I learned this little tip when I took the double weave class from her last November. (

The 3rd thing that was "new to me", was the use of a "floating selvage". I'd heard of floating selvages before but had never seen one used nor knew much about them. For some reason, I was intimidated by them.....why? Because I was ignorant! ;) They are one of the most simple things to use! All they consist of are 2 "extra" warp ends on each side of the piece of weaving that are part of the wound warp, but not threaded through any heddles! That's it! Then, when weaving, you, the weaver, decide how you will use them.....either by having the shuttle go over it on one side of the piece and under on the the other side, or vice versa. As long as it is done in the same sequence throughout the weaving, it locks the sides in of the woven piece all along its edges. I "think" part of the reason I was intimidated by it was because I have mainly done plain weave/tabby for my woven pieces, and with that, no ends are ever left on the edge that weren't locked in with each treadling sequence.

And it was because I was moving from plain weave/tabby that I forced myself to read and find out more about "floating selvages". I was planning a scarf using "twill". As seen in the photo below, twill creates directional lines in the woven piece. If I hadn't used floating selvages on this piece, I would have had warp ends not caught on some of the treadling sequence.

Here is the piece after I took it off the loom. I had planned for a scarf, but I used 3/2 Tencel as warp and weft. It may be too heavy or stiff for a scarf and not allow enough drape in the piece, thus my comment about a "small runner" earlier in the post. ;) I am pretty sure I'd seen it used for a scarf before, but could be wrong about that. I'll know more after wet finishing it.

Yesterday, I took time to twist the fringe on these 3 pieces. Today, I'll wet finish them.

1 comment:

dc said...

floating edges, have to study that more as I have progressed to learning the same weave you have here, the twill.

Also I loved it that you just learned about the styrofoam board to clip your instructions. Gary did that for me this morning to help me keep track. WooHoo. We so smart!