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Silk and Jin: A Perfect Combination

Check out Sensational Silk, a beautiful new eBook for All Access subscribers.

Susan E. Horton Nov 20, 2023 - 3 min read

Silk and Jin: A Perfect Combination  Primary Image

Bonnie Inouye designed and Robin Wilton wove this beautiful Jin Silk Scarf. Photo by Caleb Young

Last week, I was asked to review the multi-shaft weaving projects in the new silk eBook, Sensational Silk, that we put together for All Access subscribers. For Handwoven readers, I had suggested a selection of three silk projects that included a beautiful 4-shaft turned taqueté scarf from Loom Theory. As I was reviewing the 4-shaft Jin Silk Scarf by Bonnie Inouye and Robin Wilton, I wondered for a second whether we had the wrong photos because the blocks in the scarf seemed so complex. (We didn’t.)

Some weavers use the ancient Chinese term Jin to describe what others call turned taqueté. Taqueté could also be called summer and winter on opposites without tabby—it is a weft-dominant weave, and typically the weft is fatter than the warp. “Turning” taqueté changes it into a warp-dominant weave, and uses a weft that is thinner than the warp. (Turning means you’ve made the threading your treadling and vice versa.)

By whatever name you call it, turned taqueté is a versatile structure. Two colors in the warp trade places as you treadle the four possible blocks. The result is a two-sided design that requires only one shuttle to weave. In the capable hands of Bonnie and Robin and woven in thin silk, Jin sings.

Photos by Joe Coca and Matt GravesBesides the Jin Silk Scarf shown in the top photo, weaving projects in Sensational Silk include (clockwise from top left: Glowing Embers by Marlene Lloyd [8-shaft], “Origami” Napkins with Silk Overshot by Susan E. Horton [4-shaft], Glow Scarf by Christine Jablonski [rigid-heddle], Meghalaya Scarf by Shilpa Nagarkar [rigid-heddle], and Relaxation Eye Cover by Jennifer B. Williams [inkle]. All photos by Matt Graves with the exception of the napkins photo which is by Joe Coca.

For weavers, there are two other multi-shaft pieces, two rigid-heddle scarves, and an inkle-woven eye cover. There are other types of projects, including knitting and embroidery with silk, and there are three interesting stories about silk and silk workers.

Check out the Jin Silk Scarf pattern plus two other gorgeous multi-shaft projects in Sensational Silk.

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