Rep Weave Placemats
Rep Weave Placemats
We're excited to dive into a new technique on our blog today called rep weave! These placemats designed by Maya Cordeiro of Bristol Looms showcase the vibrant blocks of color you can achieve with this warp-faced weave structure. As the name indicates, a warp-faced weave structure aims to almost entirely show the warp, with very little of the weft peeking through underneath. This is why the epi is sett so high (40 epi) for 8/2 cotton.
In rep weave, the alternating color patterns are created entirely through the warp color order. By alternating between thick and thin wefts, you change the blocks of color that can be shown. We list the color order below, and have laid it out in the draft, for those of you who are visual learners.
- Tools Required: 2 or 4 shaft table or floor loom, 10 dent reed, boat shuttle & bobbins (for the thin weft), stick or ski shuttle (for the thick weft)
- EPI: 40 (count two strands of 8/2 Cotton as one end: 2 ends per heddle, 4 ends per dent)
- Width at Reed: 12 ¾”
- Warp Ends: 256
- Warp Length: 210"
- Draft: Vermilion Cliffs Placemats from Rep Weave and Beyond by Joanne Tallarovic, updated and adapted by Maya
- Finished Dimensions: Set of 6 placemats, 19 ¾” x 12 ¾” each
- Finishing Details: Hand or machine sewn triple fold hem
- Care Instructions: Machine wash cold, hang to dry
Weaving & Finishing
Warp Color Order: Wind each cone of cotton into a center pull ball and warp with both the inner and outer strands counting as one. You will be threading two strands into each heddle.
- Alternate Color A + B 12 times (24 ends, but really 48 because the threads are doubled up!)
- 1 Color A, 1 Color C
- 18 Color A
- 1 Color C, 1 Color A
- Alternate Color D + Color A 20 times
- 1 Color D, 1 Color C
- 18 Color D
- 1 Color C, 1 Color D
- Alternate Color E + Color D 20 times
- 1 Color E, 1 Color C
- 18 Color E
- 1 Color C, 1 Color E
- Alternate Color F + Color E 20 times
- 1 Color F, 1 Color C
- 18 Color F
- 1 Color C, 1 Color F
- Alternate Color B + F 12 times
Threading: Maya writes, "Thread the warp alternately on two shafts, each shaft is tied to a separate treadle."
Weft Color Order:
Thick weft: 12 strands of 8/2 cotton plied onto a ski or stick shuttle (2 double strands of each color)
- Weave 24 picks thin weft Color B (1 ¾ inch) for hem
- To weave each block alternate thick weft, thin weft
- Start with thick weft, weave 5 thick picks before omitting the thin pick at the block change (see draft if you're confused!). The blocks change 18 times (about 22”) before weaving another 24 pick hem.
- Use a contrasting yarn/thread as a separator and begin next placemat
Finishing: Maya writes, "After all 6 placemats are woven, (I had a little extra, so I made a small runner) cut them off the loom. Cut apart and iron the triple folded hem. Use a matching thread and machine stitch to complete.
The process of weaving never ceases to amaze me. I have been weaving for almost 20 years now and I still learn something new with every project. I love the challenge of working with old looms that always have “quirks”! It’s exciting to figure out new ways to fix problems and make my production more efficient.
I found this project to be very satisfying. It was something I have been interested in learning about for years, but had never given myself the time to figure it out. If rep weave is something that interests you, I highly suggest Joanne Tallarovic’s book, Rep Weave and Beyond. I can’t wait to do more projects and experiment with more complex patterns."
Maya Cordeiro is the owner of Bristol Looms. She has been designing and weaving her line of home decor and accessories since 2008. Maya enjoys creating modern textiles, with an emphasis on combining bright colors and traditional designs. This was the first time she worked with rep weave and enjoyed the challenge of learning something new.