Playing around with clasped weft

Last month’s Rigid Heddle Weaving Group at In Sheep’s Clothing was all about clasped weft weaving. It was really straightforward, but I’m glad I watched someone do it (and tried it immediately afterward). It’s essentially a technique for putting more than one color on the same row, though you do get a double-thick row, making the end fabric weft-faced. There are great instructions here on curiousweaver.

It took me a few weeks, but I finally warped up the loom to get a little practice with the technique. I used up some leftover Berocco Comfort from the baby blanket I just finished. Valuable lesson learned: Comfort isn’t great for warp. It is fine once warped, but I had trouble with the yarn getting splitty while I was moving it into the slots and holes. It feels fine as weft. Another valuable lesson learned: center on the loom! I was doing rough “use all of it up” calculations, and didn’t get as far across the warp as I’d planned. Off-balance weaving is a bit hard.

Here’s a picture of some of my playing around:

Clasped Weft Sampler

I also learned that a “clasped weft row followed by normal row” pattern doesn’t quite work out; there is a floating warp string on the side when I do that. Which is kind of a shame – it was a pretty pattern in the middle. Maybe I could use it for a purse or something else where I’d be sewing and the selvages would be hidden.

I still have a TON of warp left on the loom – I’m hoping to get a chance to play with some other sorts of patterns (pick ups, perhaps) on Saturday evening.

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About Kristy Lamb

I recently finished my PhD in genetics at Yale and am currently a postdoc at Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University in NYC. I love science, people, and the fiber arts. We'll call it my muse. I taught myself to knit over Christmas break in 2002, when I was home from my sophomore year in college and was terribly bored. Despite starting with three big mistakes (very long aluminum needles, a very bad Coats & Clark how to knit book, and Lion Brand Homespun), I kept at knitting, even after that first 1/2 hour trying to tie a slipknot. Science...seems to be much the same process as the above.
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