Take Me Out to the Ball Game!

Marcy Petrini

November, 2021


In 2020 Major League Baseball cancelled all Minor League games. But in 2021 our M-Braves were back! The Mississippi Braves are the AA Affiliate of the Atlanta Braves.

Being outdoors, baseball games were an activity approved for controlling the virus. Alone or with friends, we were regulars at Trustmark Park.



Even though the team didn’t play its best early on, it was wonderful being back; after all, the grass is greener, the sun shines brighter and the beer tastes better at the ballpark! But the M-Braves improved through the season and won the AA Southern League Championship.

Going to the ballgames, I would sing to my husband:

Take Me Out to the Ball Game!

Imitating Carly Simon, but not very well.

One day, as we were driving to the ballpark, I thought: I should celebrate by weaving a scarf!

As I talked about in my October blog, I had been thinking about linen weaves in Davison’s book, and I thought that the one in the canvas weave chapter would be the perfect structure to depict a baseball. However, I had to modify the draft because I didn’t want the canvas blocks to be throughout the fabric or even staggered in columns.

Meanwhile I was thinking of colors: green for the grass and white stripes for the ball. I could change the drawdown to get a mixture of plain weave and pseudo-basket weave for texture, as ballparks usually have a variety of grass cuts Here is the drawdown:


Looking at it, I realized that I could use the middle thread on a shaft 2 for a red stripe. Because there is a single thread, the stripe wouldn’t be solid, but alternating warp and weft – perfect for the stitching on the baseball!

But a green fabric with white stripes, even with the red stitching, wasn’t very exciting. I started thinking about the colors of ballpark – infield is brown!

As a baseball field, the scarf didn’t have to be symmetrical. As I was working with the proportions of the colors and the structures, I had an idea of where to place the white stripes:

a foul ball

a bunt

an infield hit

and a line drive!

I used 20/2 silk for the green, brown and red; to make the white stand out more, I used 8/2 silk.

Finally, it was time to weave; using the green of the warp for weft made the fabric somewhat flat. I tried a variety of green yarns, and found that a 10/2 Tencel®, color sage, worked well.

Here is the Take Me Out to the Ball Game scarf and close-up.



By the time the scarf was done, the season was over. But that’s OK, I wouldn’t be wearing a silk scarf to a ballgame with 100 degrees weather!

Happy Weaving!



Linen Weave

Marcy Petrini

October, 2021


In the September / October 2021 issue of Handwoven, Judy Steward reviewing Shanta Eri silk for the Yarn Lab article, shows an example of “Linen Weave”. I had not thought about “linen weave” in decades, I remembered it as a textured weave, which Judy’s sample also shows.

I came across linen weave at a time when I didn’t really understand weaving classification of any type, so everything seemed to be a weave of sorts – linen weave, waffle weave, boundweave, etc.

Judy referenced Davison’s book in her article, so I had to look up linen weave. There are four entries for it in Marguerite Porter Davison’s book, A Handweaver’s Pattern Book. Judy’s version of the book is the 1944 edition, mine 1994, so I didn’t know exactly which of the four linen weaves Judy used. Time to explore.

The first linen weave is in the Canvas Weaves chapter, one threading with three treadlings (see drawdown below in the same order as in Davison). If we look at the third treadling, we see why this linen weave is in this chapter, it is a double block canvas weave. I decided it to adapt for a current project I am weaving which will be for a later blog.



The other two treadlings form columns of warp-dominant and weft-dominant stripes, accentuated by the sleying of cramming 4 threads in one dent, and then leaving one empty.

The second reference of linen weave in Davison’s book is by Caroline Halvorsen’s No 180, in the Texture Weaves chapter, Judy may have used this one for her sample, hard to tell from a small photograph. Looking at it, I realized that it is twill blocks, two blocks on four shafts. The threading is similar to the twill blocks I have used before, the entry for which is in the Pictionary©, but the treadling produces more pronounced differences, the blocks are more warp or weft dominant. Below is the drawdown; this, too, is a structure I would like to try. There are relatively long floats, 5-threads, but they contribute to the warp or weft dominant look.




The next two linen weave examples are from the chapter called Thousand Flowers; Davison says that “All of the patterns given in this chapter are four-unit overshot weaves…” Confusing terminology since overshot is not a unit weave.

The first sample, Linen Weave Unit has two treadling options, one with tabby and one without. The drawdown for the one woven with the tabby is below:




The second without a tabby is next:




The final example is called Linen Weave Plaid; it has two blocks, block A is the same threading as the Linen Weave Unit, the second block B is inverted. Block A is repeated 5 times, then to form the “plaid”, there is a block B, block A, block B. The thread on shaft 1 is omitted when the following block is different. The treadling uses a tabby. In the drawdown below I used 3 repeats of block A threading and treadling to make it more easily seen.




Even though Davison says that these structures are overshot weaves, I was intrigued by the Linen Weave Unit. Could it be woven as a unit weave? From the threading, it appeared that it could be classified as a double (2 pattern shafts per block), two tie (1, 2), unpaired (ties not next to each other) with a ratio of 1:4 (1 thread on a tie shaft for every 4 pattern threads). It could be easily expanded to more shafts for more blocks, three on 8 shafts, A, B, and C.

The treadling could be the classical way: the two pattern shafts for each block with each tie-down thread; that is, to weave block A, we would treadle: 1 & 3 & 4 vs. 2 & 3 & 4. Here is the drawdown, the first repeat shows the units, the second repeat shows how it is woven with the alternating tabby:




It can, in fact, be woven as a unit weave. As I looked at the drawdown, it looked awfully familiar. Because I was scheduled to lead a seminar on unit weaves at Convergence 2020 – and now moved to Convergence 2022 – I have been exploring and weaving unit weaves. I went back to my notes and there it was!

Below is the front of double, two unpaired ties with a 1:4 ratio, followed by the back of the sample:




This unit weave is sometimes called 4:1 Beiderwand. However, Donna Sullivan, in her book Summer and Winter A Weave for All Seasons, explains why she does not like the beiderwand designation for unit weaves because true beiderwand is a double weave cloth, with two warps and two wefts. Madelyn van der Hoogt has written a nice explanation of beiderwand in her “Ask Madelyn” column of November 24, 2015 (https://handwovenmagazine.com/doubleweave-part-2-beiderwand-and-lampas).


Happy Weaving and Exploring!




R.T. Remembered

Marcy Petrini

August, 2021




Our post-vaccination time was to be over on March 8 and the weekend before we were finalizing our ‘re-entering” strategy with excitement. But when on Saturday, March 6, 2021, I went to the mailbox, my excitement turned into sadness: there, by the mailbox, laid the dead little body of our cat R.T., killed by a car. Terry argues that I can’t know what happened, but what I do know is that people drive around our semi-circle as if they are escaping from home.

R.T. was so named because he was the runt of a litter by a feral cat who herself had been a runt. He was beloved and loved everybody, friendly and inquisitive. Here he is supervising Terry’s photoshoot in 2017.


As I did for the other stages of my covid life, I found comfort in weaving. I wove scarves in memory of R.T. for the four people who R.T. loved. My sister Ellie and brother-in-law Jess will pick their favorite scarves first, but not all of the scarves were ready when Ellie and Jess were finally able to visit in April. We sat a date for September. The scarves are ready, but the pandemic is back with the delta strain in Mississippi, so no visit from Ellie and Jess.

The scarves are woven in black, white and grey, R.T.’s coloring. Since I wanted fuzzy scarves both for comfort and because R.T. was fuzzy, they were all woven with textured yarns in plain weave on my rigid heddle.

I wanted to see the interaction of textured yarns with and without variegation and with untextured yarns. I used Birds of a Feather by Interlacements hand-dyed by Tracey Schuh, rayon with a recommended sett of 8-10 epi. I purchased from Yarn Barn the color grey wolf which is variegated and charcoal which is a solid dark grey. For variety I also used Knit and Crochet Confection, 100% polyamide, 155 yards/176 oz. which the company calls dark gray for color but in fact it has a light grey fuzzy core with bits of white fiber caught in the plying.  And finally, Lion Brand Basic Stitch, premium acrylic, 3.5 oz/219 yards, color charcoal. Acrylics have certainly changed since the 70s when I started weaving now that microfibers are in use.

All warps were sett at 8 epi; fringes were braided rather than twisted, as we do for chenille. Here are the combinations I wove:






Birds of a Feather color Grey Wolf, variegated, rayon

Birds of a Feather color Grey Wolf, variegated, rayon


Birds of a Feather color Grey Wolf, variegated, rayon

Knit and Crochet Confection,
grey with white fluffs of fiber, polyamide


Knit and Crochet Confection,
grey with white fluffs of fiber, polyamide

Lion Brand Basic Stitch color charcoal, acrylic


Birds of a Feather color Grey Wolf, variegated, rayon

Birds of a Feather color Charcoal (solid dark grey), rayon


And here are the scarves:




Hug your pets and Happy Weaving!



I thought about little R.T. while weaving and wondered what it would have been like to have him as an old wonderful cat. It was not to be. Life goes on.

Hug your pets and Happy Weaving!

Happy Weaving!



Azalea Spring (2021)

Marcy Petrini

September, 2021




Finally, after our post-vaccine wait, we felt safe for some outings: small gatherings with our vaccinated friends, meals at our favorite restaurants with outdoor seating, shopping sprees at the local shops, and a haircut! Also, some necessary outings, doctors’ and dentists’ appointments.

One day when we were driving in the older part of town, there they were: azaleas! In all of their feathery gorgeous colors: whites, myriads of pinks, salmon, lavender. We have azaleas in our yarn and our neighborhood, but not as beautiful and ours hadn’t even blossomed yet. But this part of town is known for the older plants that are just spectacular. I had forgotten how much I like them. As one of my friends said about the lock-down: it’s not just the things that I miss, but the things I have forgotten about.

Days later, I was still weaving scarves in memory of R.T. (see August blog) and I wanted to buy more of the yarn Birds of a Feather (by Interlacements, hand-dyed by Tracey Schuh, rayon) in a grey solid color; I was browsing the on-line catalog by Yarn Barn, and there were those azalea colors! The company calls the color scheme African Violets and maybe they are, but to me they were azalea colors.

I decided to weave a shawl to celebrate the azaleas; I could use the Birds of Feather for weft in a false satin, 3/1 broken twill, so I could have a weft-dominant side. Here is drawdown, weft dominant, how I wove it:



And this is the back of the drawdown, warp dominant:



I used a 10/2 Tencel® for warp, lilac color. I usually sett 10/2 Tencel® for twills at 24 epi, but it needed to be a closer sett for an unbalanced twill; however, the sett needed to be more open because the weft was larger than the warp. I decided on 24 epi after all.

Here is the shawl with the two sides showing:


After weaving 6", I decided the shawl needed some variation in this sea of purplish pink, so I wove one repeat of Caterpillar yarn, 100% cotton, color Paua, and repeated every 6” or so; the color reminds me of the greens of the azalea leaves, the blue sky that was framing them and the gold of the sun shining down on them.

Here are the close-ups of the two sides, the weft dominant:




And the warp dominant:



I wondered what the shawl would look like with a darker purple warp….. Next time.

Happy Weaving!



Profile Drafts

Marcy Petrini

July, 2021


This month challenge for our on-line study group is to design various unit weaves based on one profile draft.

Profile drafts are a shorthand to list the threading order of blocks. Given the specific threading of each block, the profile draft can then be expanded to the threading draft for the particular sequence.

For example, we have the profile draft below and we want to weave it as a single, two-ties, unpaired structure with a 1:1 ratio, also called summer and winter:









This can also be expressed as:

A, B, B.


We know that the design has one block of A and two blocks of B. The profile draft would expand to the drawdown below:



I choose to treadle it as single, but that is not specified by the profile draft. However, we generally treadle the number of repeats of the blocks, one repeat for block A, two for block B (note the drawdown is sinking shed).

In general, a block can be treadled using its pattern shafts with each tie down thread. In this example, for block A we have 1 & 3 vs. 2 & 3 (with tabbies in between).

In weaving, of course, we repeat that sequence throughout the fabric, and we would obtain the following cloth:



Given that unit weaves have fixed blocks which can be repeated, and organized in a variety of ways, profile drafts are ideal for designing with this group of weaves. Blocks can be combined in the treadling, adding more to our design possibilities.

I have seen profile drafts used for other weaves, but they can be unclear, as easily illustrated using overshot.

Some people define block A of overshot as:

                                                            1, 2

Traditionally, as defined by Mary Black, the block A is:

                                                            1, 2, 1, 2

But the threading could be continued, being aware that the supplementary weft float will span the width of the block.

When we come to the A, B, B profile draft, how would we translate it to overshot?

                                                1, 2, 3, 4, 3, 4


                                                1, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4

There is ambiguity.

But we can use the same profile draft, A, B, B, for other unit weaves easily.

For example, we can use the double, two-ties, unpaired unit weave, with a 1:1 ratio.

From its classification, we can deduce the threading; we also know that the rendition of the structure will require 6 shafts: 2 ties, plus 2 (“double”) pattern shafts per block and we have two blocks, A and B.

Here is the expanded drawdown, treadling the two blocks in the classical way.




 Here is a challenge for you:

Assume you have 8 shafts available on your loom. If you don’t, you can still do the challenge because, if you understand a structure, you can design it with any number of shafts. If you have more, feel free to expand to more unit weaves.

Use unit weaves only. The number and arrangement of pattern shafts can be changed, and the number and arrangement of tie-down shafts can be changed, giving lots of options.

Use this profile draft:







































 How many different unit weaves have you discovered?


Happy Weaving!