Advancing the Temple

Hi Madelyn,

In a recent Ask Madelyn, you talked about temples. Did you really mean to say that you advance the temple every three quarters of an inch? Would that be for only very tight setts with non-stretchy yarns, or with wool too?


Hi Leslie!

I did debate about whether to say three quarters of an inch or one inch. I decided to err in the direction of encouraging the moving of the temple as often as you can make yourself move it. The more often you move it, the more it is really doing its job. In classes at The Weavers’ School, the phrase I probably say most often is: Advance Your Temple! (I have to say Advance Your Warp! pretty often, too.)

If an inch and a half of fabric or more is woven beyond the temple, the temple just can’t be achieving its purpose of spreading the web to the same width that the warp threads are sleyed in the reed. With a stretchy weft, you can usually stretch the fabric back out when you finally do move the temple, but with a non-resilient yarn, you are likely to break edge threads when you reinsert the teeth.

Maybe every seven-eighths of an inch is a good compromise.  


Posted October 28, 2011. Updated July 26, 2017.

If you have a weaving question we would love to hear from you! Please email Madelyn! Pictured above: Summer Lace Placemats and Mug Rugs by Suzie Liles Handwoven May/June 2017. View related & recent “Ask Madelyn” posts!

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