Star and Rose Fashion: Two treadlings for the same threading – “Tromp as Writ” and “As drawn in” explained

I’ve taken a workshop with Slow Fiber Studios in making paints from indigo leaves and indigo powder. Now that I’ve made the various indigo blue paints, I want to paint something. I’m thinking of painting some block designs. I began thinking about painting the same pattern in both Star and Rose versions. I always get mixed up about how to make Rose Fashion so had to look up the information yet again. My favorite books for this are “Weaves and Pattern Drafting” by John Tovey and The Weaving Book Patterns and Ideas by Helene Bress. These books go into much more detail, but here are the basic principles and that are enough for me at this point.

The two variations are made with the IDENTICAL THREADING. The variation is in the treadling only.
The treadling ORDER is as DRAWN IN. This illustration shows what is meant by “treadle as drawn in”. Another way to think of it as “Tromp as Writ” except we are talking about the order of weaving whole blocks—not thread by thread. In a sense you are copying the threading in the treadling.

First you treadle the first thing that is threaded which I’ve numbered as 1. You weave that block the same LENGTH as it is WIDE. In other words, the first thing in this illustration says to weave block A for as many rows as it takes to make it as tall as it is wide. (a tall block) Then, all the blocks that are threaded as A Block will be that tall as well.

Second, you weave (treadle) the second thing in the threading (2): Block B, for as tall as it is wide in the threading. (another tall block) Again, ALL the B Blocks will be that height or that many picks.

Third, you will weave Block A but in this draft you will weave it for only a few rows because in the threading draft in the (3) position the block isn’t very wide. Again, all the A Blocks will now be woven for only a very few picks this time.

I hope you can see from the illustration how treadled as drawn in follows the order and size of the blocks in the threading.

The 4th thing to treadle is a tall B Block, and the 5th is to treadle a tall Block A.

Star Fashion
Star Fashion is the same as treadle as drawn in which I described above.

The result when you weave Star Fashion is that a diagonal line is formed in the woven pattern.

Rose Fashion
This is the result of weaving Rose Fashion. There is no diagonal.
At first glance, it may appear that Rose Fashion is just the reverse of Star Fashion, and that one side of the cloth weaves Star Fashion while the other side weaves Rose Fashion. This is not true. The inversion of pairs of blocks produces its own, unique effect.

When the treading draft says Block A, you weave Block B instead. And the reverse. Whenever it says Block B, treadle Block A. Notice this reversal in the previous photo (repeated here). Remember, you are treadlingthe height that the block is wide in the threading draft just as before. The only difference is WHICH BLOCK you treadle. And you are following the order and size of blocks as drawn in in the treadling.

This handy chart is found in The Weaving Book by Helene Bress. Every time I wonder how to get Rose Fashion, I come back to this chart.

This is also from the Helene Bress book. I think it clearly shows the diagonal formed with weaving Star Fashion and something completely different when treadling Rose Fashion.

5 thoughts on “Star and Rose Fashion: Two treadlings for the same threading – “Tromp as Writ” and “As drawn in” explained”

  1. Thank you Peggy for elucidating the star vs rose treadling on “tromp as writ” overshot patterns! A year ago, in the height of not knowing what to expect from our first winter in the pandemic I warped my barn frame loom with what I affectionately called a “gratitude “ warp. It was threaded to this same single block of the Whig Rose pattern , woven to be potholder gifts for everyone on my long list of friends and acquaintances who had made 2020 a more bearable year for my husband and I. The calming pleasure found in my daily weaving habit as did my gratitude list . A second longer warp using a different color prolonged the pleasure as each pad became an opportunity to sample another pattern weft yarn. Each one became a meditation and each one different . Giving these gifts, whether to the mailman who drove up our long slippery hill with needed packages when we didn’t dare to go out, or to long cherished friends we could now only visit with “virtually” in our winter of self isolation filled my days with purpose that calmed me.

    Of course I wove some in each treadling fashion and as I did I tried to analyze why these two different treadling sequences yielded such different results. Your explanation here in terms of blocks makes perfect sense! All I understood then was that if I made a little clock face circle, with 1-2 at noon, 2-3 at 3, 3-4 at 6 and 4-1 at 9
    that Rose treadling went clockwise around the circle, and Star treadling went counterclockwise, of course starting from a different place . The clock face made it easy to find my place when interrupted but didn’t explain why in terms of block theory, as you have so clearly here. Thank you! As I write I’m feeling the urge coming on to begin a new gratitude list for the shortest days of the year that await us….now what shall I weave?

    • I loved reading your comment. The type -o I don’t understand because I don’t recall writing “daily weaving habit”. I’d love to post your reply on my blog. Could you send any photos? That would be just great.

      • The typo was mine, above. I meant to write that ” the pleasure in my daily weaving habit grew, as did my gratitude list.” I will look for my photos to send you. How shall I do that, via email?


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