Beyond Repair - Warping

Sharktooth NYC


 In weaving, ‘warp’ refers to a set of parallel threads held in tension on the loom, into which the weft is inserted. Warping the loom is the process of preparing these threads for weaving.

Each thread, or ‘end,’ runs through my fingers at least twice before I poke, or ‘thread,’ each end through the heddles and then the reed. This process is an exercise in pattern perception, and involves a lot of counting and double checking to make sure everything looks and feels true.

For this project, we chose a natural 8/2 linen rug warp yarn from Bockens in Sweden. This yarn is strong and lustrous, ranging in color from silvery grey to golden brown. Our warp consists of 373 ends threaded in a technique known as ‘double binding’ to create a rag rug with a tight checkerboard pattern.

Thank you, Mariah Smith, for helping to wind the warp back as I held it in tension. Warping the loom is like prepping a meal, a process filled with anticipation.

Mae Colburn