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Trying a block weave

r1mein54's picture
one lease to separate warp
light side draft pattern
dark side draft pattern
start weave
close view top
close view back
varied treadling
blue close view back
Project Status: 
Project Date: 
Tue, 10/02/2012 - Sat, 10/06/2012
Yarn: unmercerized cotton
Color: natural
Type: warp
Yarn: rayon
Color: dark green , blue
Type: weft
Number of Shafts: 
Number of Treadles: 
24.00 EPI
Length on Loom: 
2.00 yd
Width on Loom: 
10.00 in
Finished Length: 
2.50 ft
Finished Width: 
9.75 in

I wanted to try some block weave. I had looked as what other Weavo`s had posted in the drafts and then sat for a while with my Weave Design download and started playing with threading and treadling. The drafts (front and inverse) is what I settled on and began to set up the loom as noted. I did get "off track" and started some freestyle treadling just to see what would result with the set heddle threading but then did stay with the plan to complete a sampler. The warp was UKI unmercerized (thanks Michael) and the rayon was stash left over from Yarn Barn purchase for commission tartan job.

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Bonnie Inouye's picture
Joined: 06/15/2009
block weave

Usually we say "block weave" when we use block substitution with a profile draft. Your draft shown here would be a very nice profile draft, similar to other 4-block profile drafts. Instead of threading the first thread on shaft 4, you would substitute the 4th threading block.  If you want to stay with 4 shafts, you need a weave that gives 4 blocks on 4 shafts. Otherwise you would need to use 6 shafts to weave this profile in summer and winter, and more than 6 shafts for some other structures. If you have Madelyn van der Hoogt's book on drafting, she explains this well. If you use block substitution, you will see the design very clearly.

I don't have a name for the cloth you show here. It is very unusual, mostly weft-faced, with floats in both directions.

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ReedGuy's picture
Joined: 01/13/2012
r1mein54, I also like

r1mein54, I also like experimenting in this way. I have some drafts I soon will weave swatches. I couldn't really name the weave of some of my creations, but I try to limit floats to 3 or less threads. Sometimes I draw up a draft and it becomes way too "busy" for my liking and I just delete it. For me, not being able to name the weave is lack of experience or background. For what I'm doing, and for those that might receive a piece, it makes no difference. They wouldn't even recognize a flaw because they are just looking at an object not the details. ;) I'm not in this as a business and I won't be judging anyone's work. On the other hand, good to have folks like Bonnie on here to help read a weave so some of us can come away looking half way smart at least when we tell someone what type of weave we just gave them. However, the recipient may or may not remember it. :)

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r1mein54's picture
Joined: 01/10/2011
Thanks both of you for the

Thanks both of you for the feedback.

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lkautio's picture
Joined: 06/11/2009
block weave

A sampler is a great way to explore the idea and see the inherent possiblities in a threading. Woven like this you have an interesting cloth, but not what most people would consider a block weave.

In a block weave a group of threads work together to weave pattern or background (or a second - or third - pattern). I can't think of any instances where a block would have less than two shafts, though one or both of those shafts may be reused in other blocks.

I looked at your draft and I think you could rethread to at least one block weave with 4 blocks on 4 shafts without adding threads - overshot. 

To do this, you will always keep an odd-even progression (allowing a true tabby). Your threads on shaft 1 (now block A) will alternate shaft 1 then 2, your shaft 2 (now block B) becomes 2 and 3; your shaft 3 (Block C) becomes 3 and 4, and your shaft 4 (block D) alternates 4 and 1.

1,1,1; 2,2,2; 3,3; 4,4,4

becomes (keeping the odd and even alternating)

1,2,1; 2,3,2; 3,4; 1,4,1

You would also need to change your tie-up and treadling to overshot versions (alternating tabby with 2/2 twill pattern shots). Each block will share an edge thread with the next block and some half-tones will occur (because blocks share pattern shafts) so it will not look exactly like your drawdown (it would be a lot closer in summer and winter on 6 shafts) but you will see the relationship. Have fun - you are on the right track by your willingness to experiment!

Laurie Autio

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r1mein54's picture
Joined: 01/10/2011
Thanks for the information

Thanks for the information Laurie. I will have to study this or even try to set this up on the loom and then it may make better sense to me.



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