Monday, 16 November 2015

Collapse Weave 2

Collapse weave 2: Completing the workshop.

I liked the collapse weave effect with the first warp but I felt that the white wool stripes were too wide.  I wanted to have the effect of blue waves with white tops.  I made a new warp with only 4 ends of wool for the white stripes.  See my blog entry for October for the first post about this workshop.

New warp:

Six blue silks: B1 is the lightest blue and B6 is the darkest blue.













B1: 16
B2: 16

B2: 32

B2: 16
B3: 16

B3: 32

B3: 16
B4: 16

B4: 32

B4: 16
B5: 16

B5: 32

B6: 16
B5: 16

B6; 32

Total number of warp ends:  784                     silk: 672 and wool: 112

Sample two

Width at reed: 25.5  inches
Width off loom:  18.25  inches

I used a temple (also known as a stretcher) to keep the width of the piece even.

The second warp on the loom.  I used a temple ( stretcher) to keep the width even.

Sample measurements:

Length:  15  inches including borders.
After washing in machine:   Length:   approx. 12 inches

The width varies according to the type of weft yarn.

Sample details:

A. 3  inches 56/2 merino overtwisted wool
approx. 24 ppi         Width after washing: approx. 12 inches

B. 3 inches  56/2 merino overtwisted wool
  approx. 12 – 14 ppi    Width after washing: approx. 11.25  inches

C. 3 inches unknown fragile merino yarn
12 – 14 ppi    Width after washing: approx. 12 inches

D. 3 inches unknown fragile merino yarn
24 ppi   Width after washing: approx. 1114 - 15 inches

E. 3 inches 500 gm cone fine merino
at 24 ppi   Width after washing: approx. 16 inches

F. 3 inches blue overtwisted yarn.  I do not know what type of yarn this is.
 at about 18 – 20 ppi  Width after washing: approx. 21 inches

Close up of weaving on the loom

close up unwashed sample

The washed sample
Washing the sample and examining the different weft yarns was fascinating.  It was very instructive to see how the yarns reacted to machine washing and the effect produced.  Keeping detailed notes for the blog and for the workshop will be very useful in the future when I try some more examples of collapse weave.

I completed the workshop by weaving the rest of the warp as a scarf.


Length off loom = 235 cm
Width off loom = 61 cm  (approx. 24 inches).

Scarf after washing:  149 cm by 21 cm

The completed scarf. 

The scarf rippled beautifully and I was pleased with this final result.  The narrower wool stripes and the wider blue silk stripes looked like rippled waves with white tops.  Here is a close up of the scarf.

Close up showing the felted wool stripes and the rippled silk.
The workshop has been a lovely way to find out more about overtwisted yarn and collapse weave.

Susan J Foulkes November 2015.

Sunday, 1 November 2015

The Braid Society November 2015:

The Braid Society is a fantastic organisation for anyone interested in narrow wares - braiding, plaiting, band weaving, tablet weaving, sprang, etc.  There is a facebook page for the Braid Society on

It was founded in 1993 and has members around the world.  The aim of the Society is to promote the education and practice of the art and craft of making constructed or embellished braids and narrow bands. Next year is exciting as the 3rd International Braiding Conference is being held in Tacoma in the USA.

Check out my blog for details of the workshop that I will be running at the conference.

Click on this link to see what other workshops are on offer.
Booking is now open for Braid Society members.  Non-members will have to wait for a couple of weeks.


Here is the latest annual journal Strands.  I always look forward to it as there are so many different craft interests and so many interesting craft practitioners.

This edition is no exception.

Contents page

My article about the stunning Latvian belt from Lielvārde has an accompanying YouTube video to illustrate the weaving process. The Lielvārde belt: weaving motifs can be found at this link.

The article by Celia Elloitt-Minty is a wonderful detailed examination of some of the tablet woven textiles from the Hallstadt culture 850 - 450 BCE.  It is fascinating to see some of the motifs which also appear in patterned band weaving. Tablet weavers will be interested in the details of threading tablets explained by Gail Marsh.

There are three articles about different aspects of braiding. Barbara Walker describes one type of braid with six variations. Rosalie Neilson shares her red white and blue braids inspired by the US team at the Sochi Olympics and their sweaters. Jacqui Carey tells of her search for Naxi braids in China. The final article by Shirley Berlin looks at prayer ropes.  The instructions for making these lovely knotted strings are given in detail with an excellent series of photographs.  I will definitely be trying this technique for myself.

The centre pages are a set of beautiful photographs from the Braid Society Travelling Exhibition 2015. The theme for the exhibition was Spring is Sprung and the different interpretations of this are so colourful.

Curiosity and experimentation are such important foundations of innovation.  It is an inspiring issue, as usual.

Online discussion group. is a discussion group moderated by the Braid Society and primarily exists to provide members with information about Braid Society activities. Non members of the society with a genuine interest in braids and bands are also welcome to join this group. Members can ask questions about any narrow ware technique, or share details of their latest project. For details on how to join, go to the Braid Society home page.

I have organised five online workshop for Braids and Bands over the years.

I will be running another workshop next year for Braids and Bands.  I thought that it would be useful to go 'back to basics' and take a closer look at bands with 5, 7 and 9 pattern threads. The workshop will be useful for beginners but also remind more experienced band weavers that using only a few pattern threads, delightful bands can be produced.  I do not have a date for the workshop as yet as I am still working on the materials.  It will probably be later next year.

AGM of the Braid Society.

The AGM was held in a beautiful building in the centre of Leeds.  The facilities were excellent.  I was thrilled to be asked to give the talk in the afternoon.

I brought along examples of the bands that I have  woven and set up a display.  Here is one of my tables showing bands from Lithuania, Finland, Russia, Estonia and Latvia.

One of my display tables showing bands that I have bought or woven myself.

The title of my talk

I am showing the fragment of a marriage band from Leksand Sweden dated to 1850. I am wearing the Delsbo belt from Sweden.
I wove this Lithuanian belt which I saw in the museum in St Petersberg, Russia. I am wearing a copy of it which I wove.

Examining some of the bands I used in my talk.  I am now wearing the Lielvārde belt from Latvia.
The Lielvārde belt I am wearing was made by Ziedonis Abolini.  You can see other examples of his beautiful work on their web site. 

Click here to go to the English page.!home/mainPage

It was a lovely day.

Susan J Foulkes November 2015