Posted by Peg in South Carolina
As you can also see, I did not make a lot of progress in the threading.
A straight draw is very simple so I decided to return to a threading technique I used regularly before I embarked on this much more complex crackle threading. And that is one reason I made so little progress.
SETTING UP HEDDLES FOR THREADING
First I pull out the heddles I am going to use for a group. In this case I decided to work with three heddles on each shaft, for a total of 3 threading repeats. This gives me 24 ends, which is 1” worth of threads. I want to end up with 1” groups of warp ends because that is how many I am going to include in each group when it is time to lash on.
What you see in the photo on the right side are 3 finished bouts of 24 ends each, or 3 threading repeats each.
Second, I always use a heddle hook. I find heddle hooks easier, faster and less awkward than fingers. Certainly that is true with fine threads. With less fine threads it might be just a matter of what you are used to. So I insert my hook into the appropriate heddle, grab the correct yarn from the group that is in the finger spaces of my hand and pull the yarn through. Then I repeat the process. And repeat. And repeat. And repeat………
THREADING FOUR HEDDLES AT A TIME
With the technique I am returning to after many months of threading crackle one heddle at a time, I pull only a bit of the loop through the heddle. I then slide that loop down onto the neck of the hook. Keeping that loop on the hook’s neck, I insert that hook into the next heddle and pull only a bit of the loop through the heddle and then slide that loop down onto the neck of the hook. Now I have two loops on the heddle hook.
I do this twice more, ending up with four loops on the heddle hook. Then I pull the heddle hook so that all the threads are pulled through their respective heddles and start all over again. I do this a total of six times and then I am done with a 1-inch group of 24 ends.
Pulling one group of four thread all the way through is faster than pulling individual threads, one by one, all the way through. At least once I hit my stride, it is faster!
It’s been awhile since I did this, probably over a year, since I wouldn’t dare try it with crackle and 60/2 silk. So things did not go completely smoothly. I had forgotten, for example, how I have to watch for the heddles on shaft 8. Somehow they can get lost so that I end up beginning threading with a heddle on shaft 7 instead. And I only realize when I come to the heddle on shaft 2 that it is really on shaft 1 and so I have goofed.
A heddle on shaft 8 I find can also easily get caught up, unthreaded between a group of threaded heddles. What this means is that I would have something as follows: heddles threaded on shafts 8 and 7. An unthreaded heddle on shaft 8, then heddles threaded on shafts 6 through 1. All that has happened is that an empty heddle has gotten caught where it doesn’t belong.
If I wanted to, I could forget about this and just grab an extra shaft 8 heddle from the group at the left. But because I am used to weaving at high densities and so might find an extra unthreaded heddle troublesome, I usually unthread to the caught empty heddle, move it to the next group on the left where it belongs, and then rethread. Also, when I get to the center I will find that I have to move a heddle from the left side of the loom to the right side. That means unhooking the shaft from its two posts, not my favorite activity. What is more, should I break a thread in that area while I am weaving, finding two empty heddles in close proximity might be momentarily confusing.
NEARING MY STRIDE
By the time I got to the third bout, I had not quite hit my stride in threading, but I was moving close to it. Tomorrow is just around the corner.
Related Post: The Threading Process