Weaving Draft:  A Structure Similar to Those Used in Djezire

Many variations are possible on the standard twill, bird's-eye, and herringbone weaves that appear in the covers from southeastern Anatolia around Djezire. Here I've reproduced a draft of one common structure from Marguerite Davison's Handweaver's Pattern Book, 1968.
This draft shows one standard loom threading, and then shows how the fabric swatches at the right were woven.

The markings in the horizontal band across the top of the draft show the order in which the weaver threaded warp yarns through her heddles--in this case, through the heddles of four harnesses, or shafts.

The six fabrics here were all woven without rethreading the loom. The vertical bar on the left shows the manner in which the weaver treadled--in other words, the order in which she lifted the harnesses. For the first fabric swatch, at the top, single harnesses were lifted, making a 3/1 twill. For the next five swatches, the harnesses were lifted in pairs, but in different sequences. These five fabrics are all 2/2 twills, meaning that each warp floats vertically over two wefts; each weft likewise floats horizontally over two warps. These fabrics are basically the same on their front and back faces; the colors  merely reverse.

As you might imagine, these treadling sequences may be combined to produce further fabric variations, as we see in some of the Djezire weavings. A herringbone section may merge into a section with diamonds, for example.

Different horizontal sections of a warp may of course be threaded differently, to produce dozens of unusual weave effects.  The startling special features in the Djezire Kurdish weavings are the localized patterns produced within the twill fabrics by artisans who manipulated discontinuous wefts of contrasting colors by hand.

Back to WOVEN STRUCTURES UPDATE - 6,
Kurdish Twill-Tapestry Covers from Djezire


MARLA MALLETT
1690 Johnson Road NE
Atlanta, GA  30306  USA
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