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String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms
             
String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms
             

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial

by Christine Jablonski

We recently published the Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats, which is a warp float rigid heddle project. This pattern requires two pickup sticks to create the alternating warp floats. The issue with using multiple pick up sticks on warp float patterns is the sticks do not slide past each other, and so the weaver is required to remove and replace the second pickup stick with every repeat. For a short project, like a border or a placemat, it is not a big deal, but on a longer pattern, like a table runner, it can get tedious.

In light of this, someone asked if it was possible to use string heddles and a heddle rod instead of the second pickup stick. The short answer is yes. The longer answer is yes, if you weave the pattern as a weft float project, instead of a warp float project.

I will show you how to make string heddles and a heddle rod, and how to convert a warp float pickup stick pattern to a weft float pickup stick and heddle rod pattern.

Using this 2up/2down pickup pattern as an example, you can see how the first pickup stick (“A”, behind) cannot move past the second (“B”, in front) when it needs to be brought forward to the heddle, so the weaver must remove and replace B on every repeat. (See photo 1)

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 1

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 2

Instructions

By making string heddles and a heddle rod, we can solve this problem.

  1. To make string heddles, use a spare rigid heddle as a template, tie a loop of smooth yarn (I use mercerized cotton) with a very sturdy knot and clip the ends. Make enough loops for the pickup stick “B” pattern. (See photo 2)
  2. With pickup stick “A” inserted in pattern and pushed to the back beam, insert pickup stick “B” in pattern and turn on edge (See photo 3)
  3. Lay a string heddle under the “B” pattern strings and loop the ends onto a dowel or knitting needle, or even another pickup stick. (See photos 4 & 5)
  4. Continue across until all of the “B” pattern warp threads have been looped onto the dowel with the heddle strings. Secure the heddle strings with an easily removable tape such as Washi tape or blue painter’s tape. (See photo 6)

And that’s it for making string heddles and a heddle rod! Easy Peasy!

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 3

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 4

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 5

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 6

Converting a Warp Float Pattern 

Now you will have to convert the warp float pattern to a weft float pattern. Warp float patterns use the pickup stick to create a pattern shed with the heddle up, but two sticks inserted for their respective patterns cannot slide past each other (go ahead, try it—I’ll wait). However, weft float patterns use the pickup stick turned on edge with the heddle in neutral. When we need two pattern sheds, a pickup stick and a heddle rod do not interfere with each other, allowing us to create two pattern sheds.

Let’s look at the original pattern in this example:

  • Pick 1: down
  • Pick 2: heddle up, pick up stick A slides forward to the heddle
  • Pick 3: down
  • Pick 4: heddle up, pick up stick A slides forward to the heddle
  • Pick 5: down
  • Pick 6: up
  • Pick 7: down
  • Pick 8: heddle up, pick up stick B slides forward to the heddle
  • Pick 9: down
  • Pick 10: heddle up, pick up stick B slides forward to the heddle
  • Pick 11: down
  • Pick 12: up

Breaking down this pattern, we have warp float sequences (picks 2-4 and 8-10) separated by tabby sequences (picks 5-7 and 10-1). To change this to a weft float pattern, the pattern picks must happen with the heddle in NEUTRAL, which essentially serves as a down shed, and requires us to reverse the heddle positions for the tabby picks.

So the weft float version of this pattern looks like this:

  • Pick 1: up
  • Pick 2: heddle NEUTRAL, pick up stick A turned on edge (See photo 7)

*note: even though the heddle rod is resting on top on the “A” warp threads it does not interfere with the pattern because the “B” warp threads are not under tension

  • Pick 3: up
  • Pick 4: heddle NEUTRAL, pick up stick A turned on edge 
  • Pick 5: up
  • Pick 6: down
  • Pick 7: up
  • Pick 8: heddle NEUTRAL, raise heddle rod (See photo 8)

*note: make sure stick “A” is pushed to the very back 

  • Pick 9: up
  • Pick 10: heddle NEUTRAL, raise heddle rod
  • Pick 11: up 
  • Pick 12: down

If you lay these two sets of instructions next to each other, you can see how they are opposites (but still float sequences separated by tabby sequences), which means that when weaving, you will see the backside up (weft floats) and if you were to look underneath, you would see the original warp float pattern. (See photos 9 & 10)

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 7

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 8

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 9

String Heddle & Heddle Rod Tutorial for Rigid Heddle Looms

Photo 10

Want to try this technique? Check out the Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Runner

I’d like to give a big shout-out to the ever gracious Yarnworker, Liz Gipson, who nudged me in the right direction after some frustrating experiments with this project. 

Here is a link to a blog post she wrote about this very topic some time ago: https://yarnworker.com/geeking-out-on-the-details-pick-up-when-to-weave-which-float/

About Christine Jablonski

In addition to being GIST's Operations Manager and Wholesale Director, Christine is a weaver and exhibiting fiber artist. She scampered down the rabbit hole of rigid heddle weaving several years ago as a way to use up her knitting stash and never looked back. In addition to very practical cloth woven to adorn home and body (tea towels are her favorite home linen projects to weave), Christine also weaves conceptual works that explore themes of mood and memory, strength and fragility, and often reflect on the current political and ecological landscape. Her work is held in private collections across the country and is shown regionally in New England galleries. To see more of Christine's work, check out her Instagram



April 09, 2020 — Christine Jablonski

Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Runner

                     
                     

Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Runner

A cotton and linen runner (or scarf!) woven with 8/4 Un-Mercerized Cotton and Duet Cotton/Linen. This rigid heddle pattern uses a pick-up stick and heddle rod to create weft floats reminiscent of Swedish Huck Lace. 

Click here for more information about how to make string heddles and a heddle rod!

Designed by Christine Jablonski for GIST: Yarn & Fiber. 

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers. 

             
             

Materials 

Warp: 1 cone of 8/4 Un-Mercerized Cotton (Christine used Royal Blue)

Weft: 1 cone of Duet Cotton/Linen (Christine used Marble)

Kits: Each kit includes plenty of yarn to weave one runner (or scarf) that measures approximately 11" W x 72" L (+ 3" fringe on each side) after washing 

Project Notes

*If you are weaving on a 15" loom and warping very close to the edges of your reed, be sure the warp threads do not slip off the edges of the paper as you are winding on to the back beam, which will cause tension issues.

Instructions

1. Warp the loom with Yarn A using your preferred method (direct or indirect) with a total of 172 warp ends, 3 yards long. Center for a weaving width of 14 3/8" and sley 1 end per hole and slot in a 12 dent heddle on a rigid heddle loom.

2. To pick up the floats: 

  • Place the heddle into the “down” position. Behind the heddle, only the slot threads are up. Place a long piece of cardboard, like a section of manila file folder, under the raised threads to help you see which threads to pick up (See photo 1)
  • Using one pick-up stick, (pick-up stick "A") pick up the first 2 slot threads, leave the next 2 down. Pick up the next 2 slot threads, leave the next 2 down. (See photo 2)
  • Continue in this manner of 2 up/2 down all the way across. Slide stick to the back beam. 
  • Insert a second pick-up stick (pick-up stick "B") in front of pick-up stick A in a 2 down/2 up pattern all the way across. Then turn pick-up stick B on it's side. (See photos 3 & 4)
  • Loop string heddles under all the B warp threads and then onto the heddle rod (Click here for more information about how to make string heddles and a heddle rod!) Remove pick-up stick B. All of the A warp threads remain on pick-up stick A and all of the B warp threads are now attached to the heddle rod with the string heddles. (See photos 5 & 6)

Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

Photo 4

Photo 5

Photo 6

3. Leaving 4" of warp for fringe on each end, begin and end the runner with 3 picks of tabby, then hemstitch in groups of 4 threads. Weave the following sequence with Yarn B for approximately 75", ending on pick 7.

  • Pick 1: heddle is UP
  • Pick 2: heddle is NEUTRAL, pick-up stick A turned on edge (See photo 7)

Note: Even though the heddle rod is resting on top of the A warp threads, it does not interfere with the pattern because the B warp threads are not under tension

  • Pick 3: heddle is UP
  • Pick 4: heddle is NEUTRAL, pick-up stick A turned on edge
  • Pick 5: heddle is UP
  • Pick 6: heddle is DOWN
  • Pick 7: heddle is UP
  • Pick 8: heddle is NEUTRAL, raise heddle rod (See photo 8)
Note: Make sure pick-up stick A is pushed to the very back
  • Pick 9: heddle is UP
  • Pick 10: heddle is NEUTRAL, raise heddle rod
  • Pick 11: heddle is UP
  • Pick 12: heddle is DOWN

Photo 7

Photo 8

4. Repeat these 12 picks for approximately 75", ending on pick 7. Finish the runner with 3 picks of tabby, then hemstitch in groups of 4 threads. Leave at least 4" of fringe at this end. 

5. Cut yardage off the loom. Machine wash cold on delicate cycle, tumble dry low and press. Trim fringe to 3" on each end. Runner or scarf? You decide!

About Christine Jablonski

In addition to being GIST's Operations Manager and Wholesale Director, Christine is a weaver and exhibiting fiber artist. She scampered down the rabbit hole of rigid heddle weaving several years ago as a way to use up her knitting stash and never looked back. In addition to very practical cloth woven to adorn home and body (tea towels are her favorite home linen projects to weave), Christine also weaves conceptual works that explore themes of mood and memory, strength and fragility, and often reflect on the current political and ecological landscape. Her work is held in private collections across the country and is shown regionally in New England galleries. To see more of Christine's work, check out her Instagram

See also: Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats 



April 09, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Chevron Hand Towels

Chevron Hand Towels 

Cheerful cotton/linen towels for a time when clean hands are of utmost importance. 

Designed by Emma Rhodes for GIST: Yarn & Fiber. 

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers. 

             
             

Materials 

Warp & Weft: 2 cones of Italian Cotton/Linen in Goldenrod and Cream 

Kits: Each kit includes plenty of yarn to weave a set of 4 towels that measure approximately 15.75" W x 24" L each after washing and hemming. You will have lots of extra yarn for more towels, or other future projects. 

            
             

Project Notes

  • Tools Required: 4 shaft table or floor loom, 12 dent reed, shuttle & bobbins
  • EPI: 24 (2 ends per dent in a 12 dent reed)
  • PPI: ~15 in tabby with single weft, ~12 in twill with doubled weft
  • Width at Reed: 16.8"
  • Warp Ends: 404
  • Warp Length: 4.3 yards (155"), includes 24" for loom waste and 10% for take-up & shrinkage
  • Technique/Draft: Tabby, rosepath twill
  • Approx. warp yarn used: 1,740 yards
  • Approx. weft yarn used: 1,530 yards
  • Woven Length: (measured under tension on the loom) 27" per towel
  • Finished Dimensions: Set of 4 towels measuring approximately 15.75" W x 24" L each after washing and hemming
  • Finishing Details: Hand sewn rolled hem
  • Care Instructions: Machine wash cold on delicate cycle, air dry or tumble dry low, press as needed 
                     
                     

Instructions

1. Wind a warp with 404 ends, 4.3 yards long following the warp color order below. Warp the loom using your preferred method.

2. Thread according to the draft below. Note that the last inch on the left side of the warp only has 20 ends. Sley 2 ends per dent in a 12 dent reed for an epi of 24, centering for a weaving width of 16.8". 

3. Wind one bobbin with Color A and a second bobbin with Color A and Color B, holding the two strands together as one. Make sure to wind the bobbin slowly so that each stand is wound on with even tension. A stick shuttle can also be used for the doubled weft section.

4. Weave following the draft and weft order below. When beginning the twill section, start with treadle 6 and the shuttle on the right side of the loom. Weave with scrap yarn for a few picks in between each towel as a marker. 

  • 3" of tabby with Color A 
  • 21" of twill with Color A and B (2 strands together as one) 
  • 3" of tabby with Color A 

Note: The treadling sequence on this draft is to show the different sections of each towel. Reference the warp and weft order written above while warping and weaving.

5. Cut the fabric off the loom and zig zag the raw edges. Machine wash cold on delicate cycle and air dry (or tumble dry low if preferred). Cut the towels apart at scrap yarn maker. Finish with a hand sewn rolled hem. 



April 03, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats
                     
Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats
                     

Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

A set of cotton and linen placemats woven with 8/4 Un-Mercerized Cotton and Duet Cotton/Linen. This rigid heddle pattern uses 2 pick-up sticks and warp floats to create a motif reminiscent of Swedish Huck Lace. 

Designed by Christine Jablonski for GIST: Yarn & Fiber.

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers. 

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats
                     
Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats
                     

Materials 

Warp: 1 cone of 8/4 Un-Mercerized Cotton (Christine used Yellow)

Weft: 1 cone of Duet Cotton/Linen (Christine used Cerise)

Kits: The kit includes plenty of yarn to weave a set of 4 placemats that measure approximately 12" W x 17" L each after washing

1

2

3

Project Notes

  • Tools Required: Rigid heddle loom at least 15" wide, 12 or 12.5 dent heddle, 1 shuttle & bobbin or 1 stick shuttle2 pick-up sticks
  • EPI: 12
  • PPI: 13 
  • Width at Reed: 14 3/8"*
  • Warp Ends: 172 
  • Warp Length: 3 yards (assumes 21" warp length per placemat, 24" for loom waste and sampling and about 20% shrinkage on width and 13% shrinkage on length)
  • Technique/Draft: Pick-up stick warp floats
  • Finished Dimensions: A set of 4 placemats that measure approximately 12" W x 17" L  including fringe after washing
  • Finishing Details: Hemstitch, 1" fringe on each side
  • Care Instructions: Machine was cold, delicate cycle, tumble dry low, press as needed
  • Note: If you are working from your stash, assume approximately 100 yards of each yarn per placemat woven to these dimensions. 

*If you are weaving on a 15" loom and warping very close to the edges of your reed, be sure the warp threads do not slip off the edges of the paper as you are winding on to the back beam, which will cause tension issues. (See photo 1)

Instructions

1. Warp the loom with Yarn A using your preferred method (direct or indirect) with a total of 172 warp ends, 3 yards long. Center for a weaving width of 14 3/8" and sley 1 end per hole and slot in a 12 dent heddle on a rigid heddle loom.

2. To pick up the floats: 

  • Place the heddle into the “down” position. Behind the heddle, only the slot threads are up. Place a long piece of cardboard, like a section of manila file folder, under the raised threads to help you see which threads to pick up (See photo 2)
  • Using one pickup stick (Christine's is marked "A") pick up the first 2 slot threads, leave the next 2 down. Pick up the next 2 slot threads, leave the next 2 down. (See photo 3)
  • Continue in this manner of 2 up/2 down all the way across. Slide stick to the back beam. (See photo 4)
Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 1

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 2

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 3

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 4

3. Begin and end each placemat with 3 picks of tabby, then hemstitch in groups of 4 threads. Weave with Yarn B following the sequence below for approximately 17.5", ending on pick 7. 

  • Pick 1: heddle is DOWN
  • Pick 2: heddle is UP, pick-up stick A slides forward to the heddle (See photo 5) creating the warp float shed (See photo 6)push pick-up stick A back to the back beam after this pick
  • Pick 3: heddle is DOWN 
  • Pick 4: heddle is UP, pick-up stick A slides forward to the heddle
  • Pick 5: heddle is DOWN
  • Pick 6: heddle is UP (tabby pick, no pick-up stick)
  • Pick 7: heddle is DOWN

Leaving the heddle down after pick 7, and with pick-up stick A at the back beam, insert pick-up stick B in the front of pick-up stick A in a 2 down/2 up pattern (See photo 7) all the way across (See photo 8)

  • Pick 8: heddle is UP, pick-up stick B slides forward to the heddle
  • Pick 9: heddle is DOWN
  • Pick 10: heddle is UP, pick-up stick B slides forward to the heddle
Remove pick-up stick B after pick 10
  • Pick 11: heddle is DOWN
  • Pick 12: heddle is UP (tabby pick, no pick-up stick)

A note about selvedges: There will be floats on one side which is part of the pattern and will become less noticeable after washing.

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 5

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 6

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 7

Free Weaving Pattern Huck Lace Rigid Heddle Placemats

Photo 8

4. Repeat these 12 picks for approximately 17.5", ending on pick 7. Finish the placemat with 2 picks of tabby, then hemstitch in groups of 4 threads. Weave with scrap yarn for approximately 2" between each placemat (to make room for fringe). 

5. Cut yardage off the loom and separate placemats by cutting down the center of the scrap yarn sections. Machine wash cold on delicate cycle, tumble dry low and press. Trim fringe to 1" on each side of the placemats. 

About Christine Jablonski

In addition to being GIST's Operations Manager and Wholesale Director, Christine is a weaver and exhibiting fiber artist. She scampered down the rabbit hole of rigid heddle weaving several years ago as a way to use up her knitting stash and never looked back. In addition to very practical cloth woven to adorn home and body (tea towels are her favorite home linen projects to weave), Christine also weaves conceptual works that explore themes of mood and memory, strength and fragility, and often reflect on the current political and ecological landscape. Her work is held in private collections across the country and is shown regionally in New England galleries. To see more of Christine's work, check out her Instagram



March 27, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Overshot Rigid Heddle Towels

Free Weaving Pattern Overshot Rigid Heddle Towels
                     
Free Weaving Pattern Overshot Rigid Heddle Towels
                     

Overshot Rigid Heddle Towels

~ Weave-Along ~ See the Weave-Along videos for this pattern at the bottom of this post!

A set of cotton and linen towels woven with Mallo Cotton Slub and Duet Cotton/Linen. This rigid heddle pattern uses a pick-up stick and a supplementary weft to create weft floats inspired by the Halvdräll Towels (a 4-shaft pattern) by Arianna Funk.

Designed by Christine Jablonski for GIST: Yarn & Fiber.

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers. 

Materials 

Warp: 2 cones of Mallo Cotton Slub in contrasting colors (Christine used Ink and Clay)

Weft: 1 cone of Duet Cotton/Linen (Christine used Marble)

Kits: Each kit includes plenty of yarn to weave a set of 4 towels that measure approximately 11" W x 19" L each after washing and hemming. 

Project Notes

  • Tools Required: Rigid heddle loom at least 15" wide, 12 or 12.5 dent heddle, 2 shuttles & 3 bobbins or 2-3 stick shuttles, pick-up stick 
  • EPI: 12
  • PPI: 11 in tabby, 18 in pattern
  • Width at Reed: 13"
  • Warp Ends: 156
  • Warp Length: 4 yards (assumes 26" warp length per towel plus generous loom waste, room for sampling, and about 18% take-up/shrinkage on length and width)*
  • Technique/Draft: Tabby and pick up stick for weft floats
  • Finished Dimensions: A set of 4 towels that measure approximately 11" W x 19" L after washing and hemming*
  • Finishing Details: Hand or machine sewn rolled hem
  • Care Instructions: Machine was cold, delicate cycle, tumble dry low, press as needed
  • Note: *As written, this project will make four towels and leave you with plenty to make more. If you are working from your stash, assume approximately 100 yards of each yarn per towel woven to these dimensions.

Instructions

1. Warp the loom using your preferred method (direct or indirect) with a total of 156 warp ends, 4 yards long, alternating 1" sections (12 ends each) of Yarn A and Yarn B. Begin and end with Yarn A, for a total of 13 stripes. Center for a weaving width of 13" and sley 1 end per hole and slot in a 12 dent heddle on a rigid heddle loom.

2. To pick up the floats: 

  • Place the heddle into the “down” position. Behind the heddle, only the slot threads are up. Place a long piece of cardboard, like a section of manila file folder under the raised threads to help you see which threads to pick up (See photo 1)
  • Using your pickup stick, pick up the first slot thread, leave the next one down. Pick up the next slot thread, leave the next one down. (See photo 2)
  • Continue in this manner of 1 up, 1 down all the way across. Slide stick to the back beam. (See photo 3)

Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

Photo 4

3. Begin and end each towel with 2” of tabby using Yarn C. This will be folded under and hemmed. Adding a shuttle of Yarn A, weave the following sequence:

  • Pick 1: heddle is UP, weave with Yarn C
  • Pick 2: heddle is in NEUTRAL, pickup stick slides forward to heddle and turned on its side to create the weft float shed, weave with Yarn A (See photo 4)
  • Pick 3: heddle is DOWN, weave with Yarn C
  • Pick 4: heddle is in NEUTRAL, pickup stick slides forward to heddle and turned on its side to create the weft float shed, weave with Yarn A**

**A note on dealing with selvedges: with weft floats, it is important that you cross the wefts at each selvedge edge. Do this by crossing the exiting weft either over or under the previous weft. (See photos 5, 6, 7)

Photo 5

Photo 6

Photo 7

Free Weaving Pattern Overshot Rigid Heddle Towels

On the loom

4. Repeat the four picks above nine times, then replace Yarn A with Yarn B and repeat sequence another nine times with the new color. Alternate these blocks of Yarn A and Yarn B until you have woven 11 blocks total (6 of Yarn A, 5 of Yarn B). Towel should measure ~26" in loom under tension. Finish with 2" of tabby using Yarn C. Weave a few picks with contrasting scrap yarn to in between towels, then repeat the above steps to complete 3 additional towels.

5. Cut yardage off the loom and zig zag stitch the edges. Machine wash cold on delicate cycle, tumble dry low and press. Cut towels apart at scrap yarn markers. Hem using your preferred method.

Weave-Along

Day 1: Introduction--what you will need and what you will learn

Day 2: Loom set up and how to get started with the pick-up stick (3 videos)

Day 3: Weaving and how to manage 2 shuttles (3 videos)

Day 4: Christine's favorite finishing techniques 

Day 5: Thank you!

About Christine Jablonski

In addition to being GIST's Operations Manager and Wholesale Director, Christine is a weaver and exhibiting fiber artist. She scampered down the rabbit hole of rigid heddle weaving several years ago as a way to use up her knitting stash and never looked back. In addition to very practical cloth woven to adorn home and body (tea towels are her favorite home linen projects to weave), Christine also weaves conceptual works that explore themes of mood and memory, strength and fragility, and often reflect on the current political and ecological landscape. Her work is held in private collections across the country and is shown regionally in New England galleries. To see more of Christine's work, check out her Instagram



March 20, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Weaving Inspiration

Weaving Inspiration

A selection of weaving projects that are inspiring us this week. 

(Above image) Sneak peek of a project Amanda Rataj is working on to share with all of us this spring! ~

Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     
Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     

Mariah Gaar's Cafe Apron woven with Mallo Cotton Slub. This project is featured in her Weaving Project Subscription this month. ~

Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     
Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     

Morgan Hale has been working on lots of projects with alpaca this winter. ~ 

Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     
Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     

Angela Tong's Lion Dance Scarf woven with Italian Silk Noil. Angela is also featured on this week's podcast episode. ~

Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                    
Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     

Melissa Hankens hand-dyed Mallo Cotton Slub with Brazilwood + an alum mordant and wove a springtime scarf. ~

Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     
Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     

Doris Strand has been working on a collection of scarves (and hand towels!) using a variety of yarns from our shop. The scarves pictured here were woven using Italian Silk Noil and Italian Cotton/Linen. ~

Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                    
Weaving Inspiration Gist Yarn and Fiber
                     

If you live in the Philadelphia area, check out the Woven-Cloth-to-Clothing workshop at Wild Hand (one of our stockists)! Students will use Mallo Cotton Slub for the warp and pick from a selection of hand-dyed and local yarns for the weft.⁠ ~



March 13, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Textured Cotton Scarf

Free Weaving Pattern Beginner Textured Cotton Scarf for Rigid Heddle Loom

Textured Cotton Scarf

A scarf for all seasons and all skill levels woven with Mallo Cotton Slub

Pattern by Emma Rhodes, woven by Elizabeth Springett for GIST: Yarn & Fiber

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers

Free Weaving Pattern Beginner Textured Cotton Scarf for Rigid Heddle Loom

Materials 

Warp & Weft: 2 cones of Mallo Cotton Slub (1/2 lb cones, 1,500 yd/lb)

Kits: Each kit includes plenty of yarn to weave 1 scarf that measures approximately 11.5" W x 64" L + 2" fringe on each side after washing

Project Notes

  • Tools Required: Rigid heddle loom at least 15" wide, 12 dent reed, boat shuttle & bobbin or stick shuttle
  • EPI: 12 
  • PPI: 12
  • Width at Reed: 14" 
  • Warp Ends: 168
  • Warp Length: 3.5 yards (126"), includes 24" of loom waste
  • Draft: Tabby (plain weave)               
  • Total warp yarn used: ~595 yards 
  • Total weft yarn used: ~654 yards 
  • Woven Length: (measured under tension on the loom) ~75"
  • Finished Dimensions: ~11.5" W x 64" L + 2" fringe on each side after washing
  • Finishing Details: Hemstitch in groups of 6, trim fringe to 2" on each side               
  • Care Instructions: Machine wash cold, air dry or tumble dry low, press as needed
Free Weaving Pattern Beginner Textured Cotton Scarf for Rigid Heddle Loom

Instructions

1. Warp the loom using your preferred method (direct or indirect) with a total of 168 warp ends, 3.5 yards long. Center for a weaving width of 14" and sley 1 end per hole and slot in a 12 dent heddle on a rigid heddle loom. If you are using a multi-shaft loom, tread for plain weave and sley 1 end per dent in a 12 dent reed. 

2. Begin and end your scarf by hemstitching in groups of 6 threads. Weave until your scarf measures approximately 75" long in loom under tension. Aim for a balanced weave with 12 picks per inch. 

3. Machine wash cold and air dry, or tumble dry low if you prefer. Press warm with lots of steam. Trim fringe to 2" or both sides. 

Free Weaving Pattern Beginner Textured Cotton Scarf for Rigid Heddle Loom
March 06, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Introducing Four New Colors of Duet Cotton / Linen

A Color Story

In June of 2019 we released Duet, our first house line of weaving yarn. Duet is a beautiful, textured yarn made from 2 slubby plies of US grown cotton + 1 ply of European tow linen.  Since then, we've sent thousands of cones out to all of you, and published almost a dozen patterns highlighting the yarn.

The initial release of Duet was powered entirely by your pre-orders. As a small business, taking on a project like developing a new line of yarn would have been impossible without the support of our community. Your belief in our team and vision made all of this possible. 

This week we are introducing 4 new colors to the Duet line, bringing the collection to 12 shades.

We are once again inviting our community to be a part of this launch with a pre-order. Your support earns you a special pre-order discount (see details below), a free color card, and the joy that comes from supporting the US farmers, mill, and dye house that bring this yarn to life. 

Your yarn will ship in late March, 2020. 

New Colors!

Pre-Order Options 

3 Cones + a color card for $69 ($84 value) 

- Add any 3 cones of Duet to your cart

- Enter code PRE3 at checkout to get a free color card

7 Cones + a color card for $138 ($176 value) 

- Add any 7 cones of Duet to your cart

- Enter code PRE7 at checkout to get one of the cones free + a free color card

12 Cones + a color card for $230 ($291 value) 

- Add any 12 cones of Duet to your cart

- Enter code PRE12 at checkout to get 2 of the cones free + a free color card

FAQ's

Which colors can I pre-order? Only the new ones?

All of them! You are welcome to mix and match existing and new colors. Simply add the number of cones you would like to your cart (3, 7, or 12) and enter the associated code (PRE3, PRE7, or PRE12) at checkout to redeem the discount. 

When do these ship?

We expect to ship in late March of 2020. 

Is Duet suitable for warp?

Yes! Linen by nature requires a little more care than working with a smooth cotton. We recommend keeping your tension a bit looser than you might with a 100% cotton and advancing your warp often. 

Is Duet suitable on a rigid heddle loom?

Yes! We recommend a 12 or 15 dent heddle for towels and a 10 dent heddle if you want a lightweight, airy fabric. 

What should I weave with Duet?

Browse our collection of Duet weaving projects by clicking the links below! All of these patterns can be downloaded for free, simply add the PDF to your cart before checkout.

Rigid Heddle Duet Weaving Projects 

Multi-Shaft Duet Weaving Projects

Wholesale

Is your yarn shop interested in carrying Duet? We'd love to connect with you to see if it's a good fit. 

February 27, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk

Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
                     
Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
                     

Droppdräll Towel

The Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk was originally published in January 2019. This version has been adapted to be woven with our Mallo Cotton Slub yarn. Droppdräll is the Swedish term for Bronson Lace, applied here to create a whole lot of texture!

Designed by Arianna Funk for GIST: Yarn & Fiber (second version adapted and woven by Emma Rhodes

Arianna is a handweaver in Sweden, and the founder of Weave of the Month Club, a weaving pattern subscription in which members receive monthly weaving projects and inspiration. To join the Weave of the Month Club and receive monthly curated weaving drafts and inspiration photos (Analog members will also receive a handwoven sample & yarn chart) click here.

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers

Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
             
Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
             

Materials 

Warp & Weft: 4 cones of Mallo Cotton Slub 

Kits: Each kit includes plenty of yarn to weave 1 large towel that measures approximately 30" W x 44" L after washing and hemming. 

Project Notes

  • Tools Required: 4 shaft table or floor loom, 12 dent reed, 2 shuttles & bobbins
  • EPI: 18 (threaded 1-2 in a 12 dent reed)
  • PPI: ~10 in tabby 
  • Width at Reed: 34.5"  
  • Warp Ends: 620 
  • Warp Length: 2.8 yards (102")
  • Draft: Droppdräll (see draft below) 
  • Finished Dimensions: One towel hemmed, about 30” x 44” |  Cut down but prewash: 33” x 54” |  In loom: 34.5” x 59.5”
  • Finishing Details: Hand sewn hem
  • Care Instructions: Machine wash cold, tumble dry low
Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
             
Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
                     

Weaving & Finishing

Color A = Mallo Cotton Slub in Brick, Color B = Mallo Cotton Slub in Natural

Warp Color Order: Wind a warp with the following sequence for a total of 620 warp ends.

  • 20 ends Color A 
  • 580 ends Color B
  • 20 ends of Color A 
Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk

Weft Color Order: Weave the following sequence until your towel measures ~59.5" in loom. 

  • 6.5" of Color B tabby 
  • 6.5" of Color B tabby weft and Color A pattern weft
  • 6.5" of Color A tabby 
  • 20.5" of Color B tabby weft, Color A pattern weft
  • 6.5" of Color B tabby
  • 6.5" of Color B tabby weft, Color A pattern weft
  • 6.5" of Color A tabby 

Finishing: Zigzag stitch edges to prevent unraveling. Machine wash cold, tumble dry low, press warm with steam. Press under 1/4" twice for hems on each end. Hand sew using your preferred method.

About Arianna Funk

Arianna Funk graduated from Friends of Handicraft School in Stockholm in 2017, became a card-carrying journeyman weaver the same year and was awarded the ‘large medal of honor’ for her journeyman work. She is a founding member of Studio Supersju, a group of forward-thinking weavers. In addition to running Weave of the Month Club, she is a teacher and advisor for students in the foundation year at Friends of Handicraft and writes drafts for Väv Magasinet and Svensk Hemslöjd. A book of weaving patterns Arianna has written with Miriam Parkman, Att Väva, comes out in Swedish in March 2020! 

Further reading -- Halvdräll Towels, In the Studio with Arianna Funk

Free Weaving Pattern Droppdräll Towel by Arianna Funk
February 21, 2020 — Emma Rhodes

Sunset Towels

                     
                     

Sunset Towels

Sarah writes, "A couple years ago, I took a trip to Florence Italy with my grandmother to source yarns for the weaving yarn shop I was opening. When a woman whose family had been running a mill for generations started pulling out skeins and cones of yarn for me, I instantly fell in love with this cotton/linen blend. It is a lace weight, three-ply, slub yarn made from 50% cotton and 50% linen. The texture makes it more interesting than most cotton/linen yarns, and when washed, it blooms into the soft, durable hand that makes all of us weavers love cotton and linen so much. 

When I set out to design these towels, I knew I wanted to create something that would showcase the colors and textures of this beautiful yarn. I selected four vibrant colors of 8/2 Un-Mercerized cotton for the warp and started playing at my warping wheel with different combinations to create a gradation of colors across the width of the warp. If you’d like to follow my project exactly, you can use my warp color order, but I suggest you have some fun and play at the warping reel or board to develop your own gradation instead! To keep things visually interesting, don’t worry about it being symmetrical." 

Designed by Sarah Resnick. Originally published in the Jan/Feb 2019 Issue of Handwoven Magazine.

Need some help getting started? Check out Resources for Beginner and Intermediate Weavers. 

Materials 

Warp: 4 cones of 8/2 Un-Mercerized Cotton in Raspberry, Orange, Peacock and Yellow

Weft: 1 cone of Italian Cotton/Linen in Goldenrod 

Kits: Each kit includes enough yarn to weave a set of 6 towels that measure approximately 16" W x 20" L each after washing and hemming.

Project Notes

  • Tools Required: 4 shaft table or floor loom 19" weaving width, 12 dent reed, shuttle & bobbin
  • EPI: 24 (threaded with 2 ends per dent)
  • PPI: 21
  • Width at Reed: 18"
  • Warp Ends: 434 (includes floating selvedges)
  • Warp Length: 5 yards (allows 7" for take-up, 35" for loom waste)
  • Technique/Draft: Twill
  • Finished Dimensions: Set of 6 towels measuring approximately 16" W x 20" L each after washing and hemming
  • Finishing Details: Hand sewn hem
  • Care Instructions: Machine wash cold, tumble dry low, press as needed

Weaving & Finishing 

Warping/Threading: Warp 432 ends 5 yd long following the warp color order below or create your own gradation on the fly as you warp. Sarah finds it easiest to cut the yarn at each color change and tie a knot to add in the next color. Measure 1 end of Orange and 1 end of Peacock (or colors to match your edge threads) to use as floating selvedges and set aside.

Use your preferred method to warp the loom, and thread following the draft below. Sley 2 ends per dent in a 12-dent reed for an epi of 24. Sley the floating selvedges through the reed on either side of your warp and weight them over the back beam.

Click the color order chart to see it larger. 

Weaving: Wind a bobbin with the cotton/linen blend. Spread the warp with scrap yarn. Weave following the draft below. Sarah prefers to weave the entire warp without marking where each towel starts and stops, and to divide them after wet-finishing.

Finishing: Cut the fabric off the loom. Zigzag at the start and finish to protect the weft. Machine wash in hot water and dry on low heat. Iron fabric on warm. Mark the fabric so that you have six equal lengths and cut the towels apart. Press under ½" twice for hems on each end. Hand sew using small, careful stitches. 

About Sarah Resnick

Sarah Resnick is the founder of GIST: Yarn & Fiber, and the host of the Weave podcast. She learned how to weave in Toronto in 2009, and was hauling a Craigslist loom up to her apartment two months later...she's never looked back since! Other parts of her fiber journey included selling handwoven baby wraps, helping to launch a sewing factory in Fall River, Massachusetts, and creating Jewish ritual textiles for people celebrating life cycle events. The thread that winds through everything she does is a passion for building systems that directly support farmers, manufacturers, and artists to bring value and beauty into the world. 

February 14, 2020 — Emma Rhodes