Warp Stripes and Surprises

Even through random warp stripes you can see an ordered pattern in the cloth. Linen sitting on the shelf is begging to be used, even though the tubes are partly emptied. So, why not make some linen wash cloths to use every day?

Glimakra Julia Countermarch, 8 shafts.
I wound the warp, not in threading units, but in random sections of color, trying to empty as many partially-used tubes of linen as possible. Eight shafts on the Julia Countermarch loom. 16/2 linen, 10 ends per cm, 32 cm width in the reed.

The weave structure is a classic two-block broken twill, symmetrically threaded across the warp. The asymmetry of the warp stripes is out of sync with the precise threading symmetry in the block weave structure. And, asymmetrical patches of weft are out of step with a strict treadling sequence. The chaos of leftover-linen warp and weft threads has me holding my breath, wondering how this will turn out. Yet, as I weave, the surprise after surprise that appears on the loom fills me with delight. These humble linen wash cloths will yield textile pleasure for years to come.

Humble linen wash cloths on the loom.
Red and white threads alternate in one of the warp stripes.
Glimakra Julia with 8 shafts.
Weft threads include 16/2 linen, 16/1 linen, doubled 16/1 linen, and 6/1 tow linen.
Explosion of color!
This is a fine way to use up quills from previous projects that still have a little linen on them, as well as using up the very tail end of a few tubes of linen.

The Grand Weaver breaks through chaos to reveal his beautiful plan. Despite the hardships we endure in this world, the structure threaded into the Grand Weaver’s fabric holds it all together. He brings our random stripes of emptiness into harmony with his project plan. We find continual delight as we see the surprising glory of his master plan. Jesus, with his deliberate stripes, comes to wash us clean.

May you find beauty wherever you look.

Happily Weaving,

10 thoughts on “Warp Stripes and Surprises

  1. Good morning Karen,
    This summer’s drought to wet to hot to cold.. brought on an early fall. No frost, yet. But breathtaking colors that change overnight.

    The oaks are dressed for Christmas with red and green leaves. There are the golden aspen and red maples along our country road. The pines are dropping old needles to the ground, while our chickens free-range beneath.

    The ‘great weaver’ has a remarkable sense of color.

    Last night I went into the basement to find some empty jars. In the work area is the floor loom warped up from the spring waiting for the garden to be put to sleep.

    Everything in its season. A plan for everything. Sometime we think it is our plan.

    God bless.


  2. I just wanted you to know how much I look forward to your emails each week. Although we have never met, I feel like a fellow weaving traveler in faith with you. I started as a rigid heddle weaver and still enjoy doing plain weave and some hand-manipulated weave structures on those looms as well as on my 8 shaft ones. I appreciated you sharing your new rigid heddle loom for traveling in a recent post. I use one of my smaller rigid heddle looms in our travels as well. And some of my best cloth has been woven with the initial idea of “using up” some of my partial spools. So fun how it turns out!
    Blessings on your Autumn,

    1. Hi Cindy, I am so grateful to have you with me on this journey! Thank you.

      I appreciate hearing about your fun with rigid heddle looms. I started as a rigid heddle weaver, too. Thirty years with my 32″ Beka before I thought about getting a floor loom. My new smaller RH loom provides a very relaxing way to spend time in the camper on a rainy day (which happened last week).

      It’s a treat to learn of your experiences. We certainly have some common bonds.

      Blessings to you,

  3. Love it! I like the unexpected…keeps you on your toes!

    Another subject—we saw you weaving your skirt but have not seen the skirt complete. Are you still working on it?

    1. Hi Tobie, I think it’s the unexpected element that I find so enjoyable.

      Ah yes, the skirt… Thank you for asking! I am less than confident in my garment design skills. The fabric is beautiful–everything I’d hoped it would be. I changed the design of the skirt that I had originally planned, so I am taking baby steps to make sure I understand what I’m doing BEFORE I cut anything. The point I’m at right now – I have made a new pattern 1/4 scale, and have cut out the muslin. I just need to sew up the 1/4 scale muslin skirt. Then, if it works, I will make a new full-scale muslin. Then, THE SKIRT. And I will wear the summer skirt, even if it’s in the dead of winter. (And we’ll take pictures!)

      I am so happy to have you here to keep me on my toes!

      All the best,

  4. Karen,
    Your weaving and words are always a delight and a place of great rest in this tumultuous world. In this entry you have created breathtaking art with words and weaving and faith in an amazing, God-glorifying design. The “Grand Weaver” is something I will read again and again. You, sister-in-Christ, are bringing us living waters. Glory to God and thank you very much.

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