Sunset Towels

Am I the only one intimidated by “random” warping? I love the look of it, but I can’t seem to bring myself to let loose at the warping board. Enter Sarah Resnick’s Sunset Towels from the January/February 2019 issue of Handwoven. The towels have the wonderful random look that I love—and a warp color order to follow. You can follow the color order as written, use it for the first couple inches and then improvise the rest, or simply view it as a guide for your own wonderful—and random—creation. Here’s what Sarah has to say about her design:

Sarah Resnick’s Sunset Towels are sure to brighten up any kitchen.

Sarah Resnick’s Sunset Towels are sure to brighten up any kitchen.

Designer Sarah Resnick’s Statement

Last summer, 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 a cotton/linen blend. It is a laceweight, 3-ply, slubby yarn made from 50% cotton and 50% linen. The texture makes it more interesting than most cottolin 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 wanted to create something that would showcase the colors and textures of this beautiful yarn. I selected 4 vibrant colors of 8/2 unmercerized cotton for the warp and started playing at my warping mill (affiliate link) 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. To keep things visually interesting, don’t worry about making the gradation symmetrical.

This project would also work great with other color combinations. Choose 4 colors that play well together yet offer some contrast in the gradation. Other suggested color combos are 8/2 cotton #101 White, #415 Light Gray, #913 Beige, and #5110 Sage with Sand cotton/linen weft; or 8/2 cotton #963 Royal Blue, #5067 Periwinkle, #756 Baby Blue, and #101 White with Ice cotton/linen weft.

Happy Weaving!

Project at a Glance

PROJECT TYPE: 4-shaft.


EQUIPMENT: 4-shaft loom, 19″ weaving width; 12-dent reed (affiliate link); 1 shuttle and 1 bobbin.

YARNS: 8/2 cotton (3,360 yd/lb; Brassard et Fils). Italian cotton/linen, (50% linen/50% cotton; 3,400 yd/lb; GIST Yarn & Fiber).

Featured Image: Sarah Resnick’s Sunset Towels.

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