This challenge is open ended and designed so that you can work at your own pace. All you need is a loom with four or more shafts (although some structures can be woven on less), some weaving experience and the desire to look at a weave you know in more detail (or in another way) or to explore a weave that you haven’t tried before. It would also be great if you were happy to share your results at a WIG meeting, a Guild meeting or through the Guild’s web or Facebook pages.

We will be running the challenge for the foreseeable future and if you want to join us but can’t get to a WIG meeting, follow the rules below and let me know so that I can include you on the list.

The rules are simple:

  1. Use a die, bits of paper in a hat, or some other means to choose three random numbers between 1 and 6.
  2. Use these numbers to select a weave structure or threading, a colour scheme and a yarn type from the following lists. You will see that for each number there are three choices for weave structure/threading:
    1. These can all be woven four shafts and can be tackled by anyone with some weaving experience and knowledge.
    2. These require a bit more weaving knowledge than the structures in A and some weaves require a loom with more than four shafts.
    3. These are structures that work best on looms with eight or more shafts and require a greater level of weaving knowledge than those in A and B.

    If you don’t like any of the combinations that you get using the numbers in the order that you chose them, you are welcome to mix them up and if you still don’t like the results you are allowed to choose one more number. Note that some classic weaves fit into more than one category (for example overshot is woven in two or more blocks on a pointed threading and creates a compound cloth).

    If you have any questions about your chosen criteria and can’t get to a meeting, email or call me (on 04 1372 1624 or ).

  3. Let me know what you have chosen.
  4. Do your research and design and weave a piece that meets your criteria. When it comes to yarn type, this is by necessity a bit flexible as some combinations of weave and yarn work better than others, but you piece should include at least a proportion of the chosen yarn type. You may wish to weave a sample or something larger.
  5. Share your results.

Weave structure/threading

A B C
1 Straight threading Advancing threading Deflected threading
2 Pointed threading Fancy twill Two or more layers
3 Broken/undulating threading Tied weave Parallel threading
4 Warp faced weave Two or more blocks Networked draft
5 Weft faced weave Colour and weave Distorted cloth
6 Pick-up or inlay Lace Compound cloth

Colour scheme

1 Earth
2 Water
3 Fire
4 Table
5 Monochromatic
6 Your choice

Yarn type

1 Wool
2 Silk
3 Cotton/linen
4 Novelty
5 Any natural yarn
6 Mixed yarns