Monday, December 11, 2023

My Gift to You: a Free Cowl Pattern in Echo on Four Shafts

My gift to you this season: A free pattern (see below) for a handwoven cotton cowl in an Echo/Crackle design* on four shafts. No matter what holiday you celebrate this winter -- and even if you don't celebrate any holiday at all -- you have my endless thanks for following this blog and my work, for being a part of the larger weaving community that means so much to me and to all of us.

So what are we looking at? A pattern that calls for less than a yard of woven fabric and takes up less than 12" weaving width on your loom. To create the cowl, the fabric is sewn into a circle using a flat-felled seam on your sewing machine or by hand.  

Here are the instructions.

Warp yarns: 10/2 mercerized cotton in two colors (colors that differ in both hue and value -- for my cowl, I used purple and gold)

Weft yarn: 20/2 mercerized cotton (I used bright red)

Warp: Wind a warp of 400 ends plus two ends at the beginning and two at the end for floating selvages. Length: one yard of fabric plus loom waste (more if you want to sample first, to test colors and to doublecheck your threading, which I highly recommend).

Sett: 36 epi (sounds dense but this is a warp-emphasis fabric with a fine weft)

Width in reed: 11.11" (that's about 11" for the fabric plus one extra dent on either side for the floating selvages)


Tieup and Treadling:

For those of you with a table loom, here's the liftplan:

Here's what the drawdown looks like in Fiberworks, showing one complete motif (one full treadling repeat):


Weave three full treadling repeats (three motifs), beginning and ending with about one inch of additional pattern for your seam.

Cut off the fabric, serge or otherwise secure the beginning and end, and then immerse it in a bin of warm water using a bit of dish liquid or shampoo (or Orvus Paste or other soaps that are good for fiber). Line dry and then iron the fabric on both sides.

Create a circular cowl shape by sewing both the beginning and the end of the fabric together width-wise using a flat-felled seam on your sewing machine (or stitching by hand) with thread of a color that blends in well with your fabric. The goal is to make this join as invisible as possible. For instructions on how to sew a flat-felled seam, consult the internet, where you'll find videos, photos, and written instructions on how to do this.

For those who use weaving software, you can download the WIF by clicking here. (Please note that this is a Fiberworks .dtx file. If you use a different weaving-software program, please email me by clicking the "Email" link provided in my profile section on this blog.)

I just designed this pattern for my workshop, "Echo and Jin: Variations on a Theme," because I like to offer designs for all kinds of shaft looms, from 4 shafts to 32 shafts (but that's as far as I go).

*One note: While this pattern might easily be classified as Crackle -- because it uses a Crackle threading and treadling (without the tabby shots in between), I have modified it with some Echo techniques. For instance, there are two colors in the warp (keeping in mind that, although this is not typical with Echo, two colors can be woven on consecutive shafts, so that the interval between parallel lines is 1). I suppose you could say that this pattern is, ultimately, a mash-up between Crackle and Echo....

If you have any questions, send me an email (again, click on the "Email" link in my profile section of this blog). And thanks for reading!


Pam Carr said...

Thank you, Denise. And Happy Holidays to you and your family. May your days be Merry and Bright. 🫶

Anonymous said...

Thanks Pam! Merry Christmas and happy weaving!

MJ said...

I thanked you on FB, I wanted to do it again here. I put the draft into my iWeaveit program and used to light of a weft. Lesson learned .

MJ said...

I do have one question: how did you sew the seam?

Anonymous said...

Thank you, I love the colors

Denise Kovnat said...

I sewed a flat-felled seam -- and there are lots of instructions and videos available by searching online. Basically, you sew one seam with one of the seam allowances longer than the other. Then cut down the shorter seam allowance till it's just 1/8" wide. Fold a short hem on the longer seam allowance, iron that flat, and then fold the entire (longer) seam allowance over the short one, covering it entirely. Iron them flat, with the larger one hiding the other, then stitch them both down.

Emily O said...

Beautiful! Is this a crackle structure?

Denise Kovnat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Denise Kovnat said...

Emily, no, although the threading is a Crackle threading -- but I've used two colors in the warp along with a tieup and treadling that makes it an Echo design. I teach workshops on this category of patterns, which basically call for an extended-parallel threading. I've treated the Crackle threading as if every other thread in the warp was one design line and the threads in between were its "echoing" design line. Sounds complicated, but it really isn't in the weaving!

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