Weaving the Fibonacci Sequence


Remember my harried list of things that every beginner weaver should know? I’m sure you know that that list was the product of frustration that pushed my loom and scarf into the corner of my living room for the past couple of weeks. I felt like every time I touched the darn thing, I made another mistake that took a half an hour plus to fix, and I wasn’t even weaving yet! Then, yesterday I read the Yarn Harlot’s ‘Warped‘ post. She’s using a Schacht Cricket, which is similar to the Schacht Flip that I learned on, and completed her scarf in 5 hours. She had to rewarp the loom three times. Three!

After reading this I felt so much better. I calculated the added complication of the fibonacci series, the separate shaft and reed, the fact that there are 4 shafts (that I had not been taught to use), the awkwardness of working with a larger piece of equipment, and decided that I don’t need to be so darn hard on myself!  It’s the first time I had tried to warp alone, there is bound to be difficulties!

As you might be able to tell, this is a bit of a repeated dance between me and my ego. I’m really hard on myself when I can’t do a technique perfectly right off. I will put down projects because I can’t do it the first time, and I can’t bare the challenge of (read shame of having to) figuring out. This dance is completely contrary to all of the training I have received in my life: it is not what you do, but how you do it. When I am able to overcome the ego trip, I can see how important, if not necessary it is to make mistakes, especially as a teacher. It really helps me understand why things don’t work for other people and how I can help them work through it when I have had troubles by myself. It will be nice when I can do less of the painful ego dance and just get down to it!

So, last night before supper, I sat down with my loom and a big jar of carrot juice. I figured out a good table height and an appropriate orientation for my body so that I wouldn’t be wearing myself out trying to get over the castle (tall part where the shafts are attached). Then, I began dissecting the threading issues. It turns out that somehow (I like to think of it as synchronicity) I ended up putting two strands in one dent twice, and then leaving two dents empty a little ways down the reed. So, instead of having to re-thread the whole darn thing, I only had to spend 45 mins rethreading the middle of it. Then there was one more doubled up thread close to the end which was easy enough to fix.

Warping the loom

Then I got to weave! Weaving is amazing…. it is so fluid and beautiful. Like when you get the right gauge on your knitting and you can just go.  I did an excellent hem stitch and got going on the body of the piece.

Weaving the fibonacci

Then, one of my harness strings broke.

So I replaced them all! They were made of antique cotton kitchen string… I used very thick candle wick string. Then the weaving went even more smoothly!

Then I realized that I had two extra strands on the blue-green side, making it not the fibonacci sequence. Turns out frogging in weaving, is a lot like weaving… so I didn’t really mind. I frogged, cut the strings, turned around and kept on going.

Weaving the fibonacci

Despite the amazing revelations I had, I still believe that weaving really should be called warping, cause that’s what you spend most of your time doing.


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