Peggy’s Weaving Tips > Using two or more warps – part one

Take-up is the shortening of yarns during weaving because of the curving of the threads as they interlace. For example, larger yarns take up more than finer ones because they must travel farther in their curves that go over and under the weft. When the separate warps take-up differently, they cannot be put together on a single beam. Read the sections that follow for what to do if you have one beam or two.

Differences in Take-up: When the Two Warps Must Be Tensioned Separately

If the two warps have different take-up, they cannot be put on a single beam because one would become tight and the other would sag as the weaving progressed until a clean shed was impossible. Sometimes you can get by with beaming all the threads on one warp beam when the warp is short. The longer the warp, the more the differences listed below can interfere with the cloth that you planned.

If you have only one beam, one of the warps is weighted separately. The procedure is described in this chapter. When the take-up could be different

  • Your yarns are very different sizes.
  • There are different densities (spacing) in the reed with some areas more open, others dense.
  • Some of the yarns stretch or are more elastic or collapse when off tension.
  • You want ripples, loops like pile, or puckers like seersucker in some areas of the cloth.
  • There are different weave structures for each warp.
  • You’re weaving stuffer rugs where some warps never intersect with wefts.
  • You’re weaving supplementary warps where some warps do not interlace as often as others.
  • You have a group of special yarns such as selvedges or borders.
  • You’re weaving two layers with different setts or different sizes of yarns in each layer, or one layer has more wefts per inch than the other.

Threading Two Warps

The two warps are threaded at one time by selecting the threads for the heddles from each warp’s lease as needed. This is easy to do when you set up the two warps one above the other, with the leases clearly in view.

Each warp has its own lease sticks or lease cords and each is hung over its own broomstick for threading. Hang them with one a little above the other so the leases hang suspended from the broom handles and you can see each lease from your threading position. See Figure. I usually have the main warp on the lower lease sticks and the supplementary one above it. Since threading is more complicated with two warps, it’s most important to be comfortable.

If your extra warp is weighted separately and not on its own beam, anchor it to the back beam with a tight choke tie while you thread. This gives you something to pull against while threading so you don’t tangle the remaining warp.

Weaving with Two Warps, Part One
Weaving with Two Warps, Part One

Taken from  Book 2: “Warping Your Loom and Tying On New Warps



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