Advancing twill curves on 4 shafts

I just found this article on WeaveZine. If you page down to the bottom there is a draft for advancing twill and advancing point twill curves on 4 shafts! Where was this 5 years ago for the curves on 4 shafts challenge I was a part of? :^}

I want to try this out...more incentive to finish the scarf on the 4 shaft loom.



Posted on Fri, 02/12/2010 - 13:13

Hi Carie,

I remember reading that article and thinking it would be a great project to try. I have had the opportunity to see Bonnie Inouye's creations in person and they are stunning. The advancing twills are almost magical in their movement across the web. I say go for it. I have all four looms warped and weaving at the moment and will join you as soon as one opens up. Of course, I'd love to try the 4 harness version.


Posted on Fri, 02/12/2010 - 13:41

There is also an article by Barbara Elkins in Handwoven on 4S advancing twills. 

ELKINS, BARBARA. “Advancing Twill Is for Four Shafts Too!” MA 2001: pp. 46–49; errata ND 2001: p. 15.

And crackle (a form of advancing point twill for 4S) has been around a long time ;-)

You can get a different looking results depending on how you add or don't add incidentals and what you do at reversal points.

Laurie Autio

Posted on Thu, 02/03/2011 - 22:07

I think that this will be the next thing on the loom.  I'm just finishing some towels and was thinking of what I'd like to do next - maybe some scarves.

Posted on Fri, 02/04/2011 - 15:01

I missed this thread last year, but it just popped up again. Carie, did you try the 4-shaft draft from my second WeaveZine article (linked in your post at the top of this thread)?  My first WeaveZine article is mostly about using 4-shaft looms to weave curves.

You need to have at least three blocks to produce a curve, and several 4-shaft weaves give you 4 blocks. Smoother curves are made with more blocks and more shafts, but it is all relative. Laurie is right.

"Advancing" is a method for creating a diagonal sequence in a threading and/or treadling. You start with a smaller sequence, for example 1-2-3-4, and use that sequence like a rubber stamp but move the stamp up by a number. On 4 shafts, it makes sense to advance by 1, but with more shafts I often advance by 2 or 3 or 4.

1-2-3-4  in this example is the first threading block.

2-3-4-1 is the second block. The sequence is moved up by one place, so there are 4 threads in numerical order and the first one is now on shaft 2. 

Third block is 3-4-1-2, and the last block is 4-1-2-3. Advancing twill for 4 shafts.  You can make it larger by starting with a longer sequence, like 1-2-3-2-1-2-3-4.  or 1-2-3-1-2-3-4-3, or make one up.

The reference to Barbara Elkins' article in Handwoven is interesting- I do not consider that threading to be an advancing twill, because it is really an overshot threading. It repeats pairs of shafts, like 2,3,2,3. A twill threading has space between the diagonal lines.You can make an advancing twill on 4 shafts, but advancing points will give design that is a bit more clear. Crackle is an American name and the threading is made from small points which work nicely on 4 shafts.

Overshot gives a stronger reading of the design using two shuttles, and the overshot treadlings for 4 shafts in the first article, part 1, can be used on the threading in the second article.