Different Ways to Create Beautiful Blocks

Placemat by Heather Hubbard and Towel by Beverly Weaver


Our table is graced with diversified plain weave placemats woven by Heather Hubbard, and a modified rep weave towel woven by Beverly Weaver. There are so many ways to create block designs; here are two fun ones to try. With both textiles using variegated blues and tans, we have two different and beautiful results. Linda Shaffer’s pottery accents complete the table.

Heather’s Wave Placemats

I like to play with designs to create pleasing patterns. For this project I chose to use diversified plain weave. This consists of two thin yarns on shafts 1 and 2 to act as tie downs, with a thick yarn on an alternate shaft to create the pattern block.

The warp is wound by using one thick yarn then two thin yarns. The same weights are used for the weft and different colors can be chosen. In this case, marl yarns were effective due to the large block size. You can double threads to create a thick thread to keep from purchasing more yarn. I used 6 blocks for this design and tested the design placement to create the Flow of waves on this mat. The pattern from placemat to placemat lines up when they placed on the table.

Beverly’s Modified Rep Weave Towel

This towel is modified from Atlas de 4000 Armures, by Louis Serrure, Draft 35079. This historical collection of French weaving patterns was published in Paris around 1920 and is available at Handweaving.net. The original design is for a 4 end twill on 4 shafts; I used the design as a profile draft and then wove it using rep weave. It has 4 blocks requiring 8 shafts. This is another example of the use of beautiful variegated blues alternating with tan organic cotton. The tie up shows a gap for shafts 7 & 8 to highlight the balanced woven border at each end.

Download Placemat WIF file

Download Towel WIF file

Download Different Blocks PDF

Structure: Diversified Plain Weave, 8 shaft
Warp thread A: Blue marl 3 ply cotton mill end, thicker than 3/2 cotton
Warp thread B (tie): 16/2 cotton, dark blue
Weft: Brown cotton, approximately 8/2, used doubled on bobbin
Weft (tie): 16/2 cotton, dark blue
Warp sett: 18 ends per inch, 12 dent reed, sley 1-2; 1 thick followed by 2 thin
Width in reed: 17″, Use floating selvages
Dimensions after hemming and wet-finishing: 13″ x 18″

Structure: Rep Weave, 8 shaft
Warp A: 6/2 cotton, variegated blue
Warp B: 9/3 organic cotton, tan
Thick Weft: 6/2 variegated blue cotton and 5/2 solid blue cotton, used together
Thin Weft: 20/2 cotton, light tan
Warp sett: 24 ends per inch, 12 dent reed, 2 ends per dent
Width in reed: 21″
Dimensions after hemming and wet-finishing: 19.5″ x 30″