Friday, January 20, 2012

A&S 50: 33-Rosette Twill

Twill and its variants make up nine of the sixteen mostly commonly found textiles identified in Bender-Jorgensen’s North European Textiles Until AD 1000.  In my continuing effort to understand weave structure and improve my weaving skills in an historical context, exploring some of these twills presented an excellent challenge.  The rosette twill in particular appealed to me as both a technical challenge, and an attractive and appealing pattern.

For this project, I decided to make napkins using two colors of weft on the same warp.  Using ivory cottolin warp set at 24 ends per inch, I wove two lengths of the same pattern using tan weft and light green weft.  Unlike some of my previous twill experiments, this time I used a floating warp to ensure a neat selvedge, which was a big help.
  •  Floating warps really do make a huge difference!  My selvedges not only are free of the weird floaters I was getting on the Greenland twill, but they are much more even.  It took some getting used to and slowed me up a bit at first, but once I got used to working with them it was worth the extra effort.
  • Patterns like this are far less forgiving of mistakes in tredling than plain twill.  You can see every little mistake.  My usual strategy of warping up twice what I actually needed too to get two usable napkins proved to be a good one here, as I had quite a few tredling mistakes at the beginning.
  •  I need to do some work on color combining.  I was surprised that the tan and cream pattern had better contrast that the green and cream.  This is not at all what I would have thought would have happened.  I suspect that doing white-on-white would have a better effect that I had initially thought as well, given how nicely the cream/tan combo came out which bodes well for my Perugia project.

Bender-Jorgensen, Lise.  North European Textiles until AD. 1000.  Aarhus University Press (December 1992)

McKenna, Nancy.  Medieval Textiles: North European Textiles ( Last accessed Jan. 19, 2011

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