What’s in a Loom’s Scrap Heap? – (Maybe, just maybe an example of tying on new warps??)

I’ve noticed over the years in my travels that most hand looms have a little scrap heap near them. I noticed one in Japan and thought it would be a great teaching aid. I’d been teaching one of the husbands on the trip and I could see if he could find the warps, wefts, and selvedges. I expected them to give them to me, but I did pay a small price. That was OK because it is a great teaching aid.


When I ironed some of the fabric scraps, I noticed this scrap seemed to have a “purple fringe”. I said, Wow! Maybe these are new warps tied to old ones.


I began to look closer and seemed like there might actually be knots. Maybe I was in luck.


.I needed to use a tapestry needle to part the tiny threads.


Yes! Knots! Every warp thread was tied in a knot to a purple thread!


There was another scrap I didn’t need to bother to untangle because it was clear this also was a new warp knotted to the old, thread-by-thread.


I describe the process of tying on new warps thoroughly in my book Warping Your Loom & Tying On New Warps which is now back in print. It is also still available as a pdf for less money.


Notice that I tie on behind the heddles, just like these fine threads would have been tied. My mentor, Jim Ahrens said, “If you can talk them out of tying on in front, you will be doing them a big favor.”


8 thoughts on “What’s in a Loom’s Scrap Heap? – (Maybe, just maybe an example of tying on new warps??)”

  1. Thank you for this. I may try to tie on behind the heddles next time. Can you do this after cutting the fabric from the loom?

    Also, I love your needle case. Very clever.

    Reply
    • I wove the cloth for the needle cases. I copied the needle case I saw that a friend had. I made a lot on that warp and gave them as favors or gifts. Thanks for the comment.
      Next:
      You would weave some amount in the old warp before cutting off the cloth; ideally the two-stick heading. That would anchor the old warp in front of the reed so the threads can’t pull out of the reed and heddles. In other words the old warp would be anchored in front of the reed and still be in the reed and heddles with some more warp behind the heddles that was attached to the warp beam in some manner. My book describes a variety of situations depending on the amount of warp left .” The ideal set-up is to have the cloth you wove on the old warp still in place on the cloth beam. It makes drawing the warp knos through the heddles easier and allows you to begin weaving without having to stop and attach the warp to the cloth apron rod. The new warp is under the same, even tension as when the first cloth was woven.” page 100 in Warping Your Loom & Tying On New Warps.” In more other words you will be pulling the knots through the heddles and then through the reed bringing the new warp from the back to the front of the loom.

      Reply
    • You would weave some amount in the old warp before cutting off the cloth; ideally the two-stick heading. That would anchor the old warp in front of the reed so the threads can’t pull out of the reed and heddles. In other words the old warp would be anchored in front of the reed and still be in the reed and heddles with some more warp behind the heddles that was attached to the warp beam in some manner. My book describes a variety of situations depending on the amount of warp left .” The ideal set-up is to have the cloth you wove on the old warp still in place on the cloth beam. It makes drawing the warp knos through the heddles easier and allows you to begin weaving without having to stop and attach the warp to the cloth apron rod. The new warp is under the same, even tension as when the first cloth was woven.” page 100 in Warping Your Loom & Tying On New Warps.” In more other words you will be pulling the knots through the heddles and then through the reed bringing the new warp from the back to the front of the loom.

      Reply
  2. I have your book and have tied on new warps many times in the past but always in front of the reed. Easier to see the threads and less chance of missing an end; yes, have to help the knot get through the reed but no problem.

    Reply
    • If it works for you, why change, but it is a more efficient way and easy to see the threads because of the cross in both warps clearly visable. As an experienced weaver, you might just like to try it. Or read the chapter and visualize it all. I like to try things but when I’m in the mood and the situation is right for experimenting. Let me know if you do look into it more. In industry that’s the way. Can you imagine pulling thousands of threads from the front? And since the new warp is already beamed on, the threads are all under tension. And if you see how to tie the knots they pretty much are on equal tension and no need to cut and tie on because you can just begin weaving. I’m not arguing at all, just supposing you want to just read about it. It is slow: I didn’t say it was faster.
      Peggy

      Reply

Leave a Comment