Anatomy of a dishtowel – Part 1: the warp

I’m going to weave some dishtowels.  I’ve selected a pattern which is new to me but doesn’t look too difficult.  The fiber is 8/2 cotton.  If all goes well there will be 4 dishtowels, ideally none alike.

Step 1 is to make the warp (the vertical strands).  Four dishtowels calls for 5 1/2 yards of warp and the pattern calls for 490 ends (strands).  I measured this out on my warping board.

This represents about 4 hours of me standing on the porch winding a single strand of cotton from a cone, back and forth around the pegs until I had the needed 490 ends.  The dangling strings are the ties which will keep the strands in order when I take them off the board.

To keep this manageable, they get formed into a warp chain:

Next up: putting the warp on the loom

[But not today because it is hot and sticky and even cotton isn’t much fun when it is hot.]

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Author: Jennifer Kortfelt

Owner, Heron Pond Designs, a fiber and textile exploration.

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