I have time for a few more projects on the old floor loom before I take it down and sell it to make room for my new loom. In December I tried out Shadow Weave – a weave structure with alternating dark and light threads in both warp and weft. The result was lovely, I’ll be experimenting more with shadow weave in the months to come.
A logical extension of this weave structure is to consider how alternating light and dark threads affect other weave structures. This was the subject of Tom Knisely’s latest book “Huck Lace Weaving Patterns with Color and Weave Effects” which was featured in a recent Handwoven magazine. Looking through the book, I chose a pattern I liked and modified it from a 4-shaft pattern to an 6-shaft pattern, allowing me to insert some plain weave into the pattern. The original pattern looked like this:
By grouping the floats into blocks of four, I created a pattern with alternating blocks of floats and plain weave:
I wove these two patterns once with dark thread floats and once with light thread floats, for four towels. Because Huck Lace is a five thread pattern, the weft pattern with dark floats repeated the five thread sequence light, dark, light, dark, light – resulting in two adjacent light threads at the end of each five thread sequence. This, combined with the alternating threads in the warp, meant that all of the floats were dark (and reverse dark and light to get light floats). For the fifth towel I alternated the weft threads just as the warp threads had been alternated – resulting in both light and dark floats. Combined with the honeycomb pattern it looked like this:
Some technical specifications – the yarn is 8/2 cotton and it’s woven at 15 ends per inch and 15 picks per inch. The resulting towels are about 15″ wide and range from 22″ to 25″ long before hemming.
And here’s a link to a picture of my loom – if anyone in Brisbane is interested in purchasing an 8-shaft Countermarche floor loom, let me know!