I've had a lot of ideas about multiple tabby weave and so I've been experimenting. To run through some of my ideas, I put a sample warp on my loom, a little over a yard long and about six inches wide.
For this warp I chose all the various yellow and gold 8/2 yarns that I have; mostly cotton, but on a whim, I added some yellow rayon chenille. I measured and tied them on to my last MTW warp, changing the various yellows in Fibonacci stripes of 5, 8, 13, and 21 ends each. Then I experimented with the weft.
First I tried the same green sportweight cotton knitting yarn that I used for the experiment with the brown striped warp.
I changed treadling in the same Fib sequence too. What I immediately didn't like was the chenille stripes. Up close and personal they are too dominant. However, with almost a yard of this warp still on the loom, I kept on experimenting.
Next I tried the same weft yarn in a different color, purple.
On this one, besides not liking the chenille stripes, I didn't think that this particular purple looked all that well with the yellows.
Next I tried to incorporate the chenille into the weft sequence. The treadling is still in the same 5, 8, 13, 21 treadling sequence. First with green...
Mmmm. Nah. Well, how about that with the purple weft?
Better, but even with narrower chenille weft stripes it is still a no. Next I tried one of the yellow 8/2s for the weft, but still added the chenille stripes.
Boring. Add that to the no list too.
By this time I had used up that warp, so I tied on more. This time I decided to use the chenille only for each of the narrowest warp stripes. The others are still the same yellows and golds as before. For the weft I used the same 8/2 yarns, changing them randomly except for the narrow chenille stripe.
Michele asked about the loose weft ends. Since these are just samples, I left them hanging. After washing and drying I cut them shorter, but didn't worry about them otherwise. If this were for a sewing project, I'd leave them too. I only worry about loose weft ends for something where the selvedges will show, like a scarf or dishtowel.
The following are two samples from that second sample warp.
These were a little more interesting than the first batch, but by this time I was sick of yellow and gold, which are not my favorite colors anyway.
Even though I wouldn't use any of these for a larger piece, I learned a lot from them. For one thing, I learned that I really like the heavier weft for MTW, even though the particular colors of green and purple weren't perfect choices.
While I think the chenille used this way has some possibilities, I found that there was some differential shrinkage after washing and drying. Because the squares were so large, I really didn't like the look of that, so I pressed it out as best I could.
Also, the very nature of multiple tabby weave caused the chenille to create wavy weft stripes rather than straight ones. Again, this has possibilities.
I'm sure every spinner and weaver out there has heard "sample, sample, sample," and for knitters it's "SWATCH!" All I can say to this is, "how true, how true."
Multiple Tabby Weaves
MTW With Heavier Weft
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