Bands of Color Napkins

Sometimes it’s the little things that make a big difference. Like sea salt on top of good caramel or thin strips of fresh basil on a ripe tomato—these flavors elevate a dish. In weaving, we can do the same thing—simple little additions take ordinary weaving into the realm of extraordinary. Take Jean Hill’s Bands of Color Napkins from the September/October 2018 issue of Handwoven. She took what could have been a beautiful, but somewhat boring, twill napkin and made it stand out with simple bands of color in the warp. The bands almost look like sewn-in inkle bands, but they’re completely woven on the floor loom with some careful planning. Here’s what Jean has to say about designing her napkins:

Bands of Color Napkins

Jean Hill’s Bands of Color Napkins.

Designer Jean Hill’s Statement

When designing these napkins, I decided to create borders of multicolor bands that emulate the palette from the inspiration photograph. I designed the rest of the napkin to have interesting but subtle textures and patterning.

The threading is based on a dornick twill draft in Carol Strickler’s A Weaver’s Book of 8-Shaft Patterns. I designed my treadling and tie-up to evoke the photograph’s mountains within the colorful borders.

Whether you weave these napkins as Jean did or use her design as a springboard to design your own napkins or towels (or really anything with colorful bands along the edges), I hope you feel inspired to weave something wonderful.

Happy Weaving,

Project at a Glance

PROJECT TYPE: 4-shaft.

STRUCTURE: Huckaback.

EQUIPMENT: 8-shaft loom, 23″ weaving width; 12-dent reed; 1 shuttle; 1 bobbin; temple (optional).

YARNS: 10/2 pearl cotton (4,200 yd/lb; UKI; Yarn Barn of Kansas).

OTHER SUPPLIES: Monofilament line; 1/4″ Lite Steam-A-Seam 2 tape from the Warm Company; coordinating dark green sewing thread; Shout Color Catcher dye-trapping sheet.

Featured Image: Jean Hill’s napkins feature beautiful bands of bright colors on a sea of green twill to create an effect that’s out of the ordinary.

Discover something new in every issue of Handwoven!

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