Plainweave and warp floats are the key to this simple but ingenious scarf design analysed by Anna Champeney Estudio Textil in north Spain.
Ever seen a woven textile that intrigues you and you’d like to know how it was woven? This scarf, worn by a pupil at a scarf course recently, aroused Anna’s curiosity and so here’s her interpretation. It´s simple … when you know how!
“I think this scarf can be woven on just 4 shafts, threaded as a straight draw. If you have an eight shaft loom you have more possibilities with a block threading but you can also thread with a straight draw.
The opaque horizontal banded sections in the photo are woven as plainweave and the section with the “fringes” are woven by weaving the following pick lifts –
Lifts for the “fringe” sections
- Pick 1 – 124 (or 124 568 on 8 shafts)
- Pick 2 – 134 (or 134 578 on 8 shafts)
The fringe section lifts create very long warp-wise floats which stretch from one band of plainweave all the way to the next. The floats are then cut with scissors in groups to create the chequerboard design. My guess is that when the fabric is washed (“wet-finished”) for the first time the invidual float threads group and “stick” together, with the cut floats twizzling around each other and curling up. Not all threads would necessarily behave in this way though. Other types of yarn could well give different results.
Here you can see my representation of the scarf generated on my computer as a Weavepoint weave pattern – with white warp ends creating warpwise floats in block A and plainweave being woven on block A.
It´s really great when you have enough knowledge about weaving to begin to see woven textiles were constructed and figure out how they woven. It´s not that you want to copy someone elses design but you can adopt the same principles and incorporate them into a design of your own. “Reading” a fabric feels like communicating with other weavers from around the world.
As I said, I use Weavepoint software for generating cloth drafts. If you´re interested in buying Weavepoint weave design software from us or coming for some one-to-one tuition on using Weavepoint or have a short introduction to woven textile design on holiday in north Spain with us then contact us here by email.
If you have more than 4 shafts and want to play around with the design – incorporating colour-and-weave effects it could be really fun too. Or you can cut the floats in different ways to modify the design.