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Passing the Weaving Torch

Carol Thilenius details how to weave a 5-shaft pattern on a 4-shaft loom.

Carol Thilenius Jul 6, 2021 - 5 min read

Passing the Weaving Torch Primary Image

Photo: Matt Graves

“In the old days this weave was rarely attempted on four harnesses but, oddly enough, often on five harnesses, suggesting that weavers of that day may have rigged their four-harness looms with an extra harness to carry the weave threads. This is merely a guess, as I have never found notes or drawings to substantiate it in any of the old books or manuscripts I have examined.” —Mary Meigs Atwater, The Shuttle-Craft Book of American Hand-Weaving

As weavers, we often look to the past for inspiration and help. We search through old books of drafts and use techniques developed and refined by weavers through the generations. Sometimes, we even write about what we’ve learned hoping that someday our writings will provide inspiration for weavers of the future. This article from *Interweave, Summer 1979, illustrates the strength of those connections between generations of weavers. A technique from the Colonial days piqued the interest of Mary Meigs Atwater. Carol Thilenius became intrigued by Atwater’s suggestion and developed a solution. Finally, Carol’s solution caught the interest of Susan E. Horton, as you can see in her runner in the photo at top.*

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