There's a wide range of twill weaves though a diagonal rib is the most common (think denim). Generally you need a four (or more) shaft loom to weave them. A rigid heddle loom is the equivalent of a two shaft loom. The more shafts, the more complex the patterns you can weave. However, I found a 'recipe' for weaving something twill like on a rigid heddle loom on Ravelry (my new favourite thing that isn't a loom - Andy recently described it as 'like Board Game Geek but for angharad'), so I thought I would give it a go. I had actually been planning to do something like this on my small frame loom before I realised it would be extremely difficult, so I had the yarn to hand already.
First things first: I mentioned in my last post
that I was going to try the 'proper' way of warping up the loom. Instead of a thousand words, here's a picture:
It's a bit hard to see, but basically you clamp the loom to the table, tie one end of the yarn on and then wind it back and forth between the back beam of the loom and something carefully positioned the desired length of the warp away. In this case, a chair with a long post.
This was substantially quicker. I got the warp wound on and tied up ready to weave in about two hours, which was much quicker than the six hours for the previous piece, even considering that this was only about half the width. I suspect that as the complexity of the pattern increases the new method will approach the old one ( there probably wouldn't be much difference if you were swapping yarns or colours in the warp every end or two).
It was reasonably easy to keep a good even tension in the warp as I was winding it, but I think it would become a bit more difficult to do so if the piece was wider or the warp was much longer.
So, on to weaving:
The texture is quite subtle and really only comes out in the right light, so it was tricky to take pictures of. Above you can see I have woven a band of plain weave and am just starting the twill.
It was pretty easy, really, once I got the hang of it, so then I decided to play around with the pattern a bit:
Fat chevrons and skinny chevrons.
Finally, the finished piece:
This was before I trimmed the fringe.
The yarn used was a fairly bulky cotton acrylic blend. It was quite soft, but the scarf is a bit stiff, so I might try washing it to see if that softens it up a bit. Overall I am quite pleased with this experiment. Next time I might try the twill in two colours and see if I can get a shot effect.