Ask Madelyn: Turning a Draft

Ask Madelyn

Hello Madelyn,

The attached draft is from a non-weaving friend who wants me to weave her some towels and napkins, but she wants the pattern stripes to go length-wise (warp-wise) instead of in the weft direction. How do I change the draft to put the pattern stripes in the warp? I have an 8-shaft, 10-treadle loom.



Hi Linda!

Your draft is shown here in Figure 1. What you are wanting to do is called “turning a draft.” To do this, you simply rotate the draft ninety degrees. This will mean that the threading becomes the treadling, and the treadling becomes the threading. Your original draft is a 4-shaft, 6-treadle draft; when it is turned, it becomes a 6-shaft, 4-treadle draft—very doable on your 8-shaft loom.

The only other change you have to make besides the rotation is to the tie-up. You need to tie all the blanks in the rotated tie-up instead of the numbers (see the tie-up in Figure 2). This has to do with the fact that you are now raising threads in the warp that were originally weft threads passing over shafts that were not raised. (You don’t have to think about this, you just have to do it or you will weave the fabric upside down.)

Twill drafts are especially ideal for turning since they are balanced weaves. With weaves that have supplementary wefts, you often need an extra warp beam for what will become a supplementary warp in the rotated draft.

This one will work very well!



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