February Weaving Challenge: Three Times the Fun!

Posted by Jodi Ybarra on

Three Times the Fun!

This month's challenge will be creating a Houndstooth weave structure with three colors in the warp and weft.  Our "Three Times the Fun" Towels are the perfect opportunity to expand your weaving skills and create a beautiful pattern that will not only be fun but will be easier than you might think.

We touched base with houndstooth back in November with our Houndstooth & Color Play Towels where we created the Houndstooth design using two shuttles as we weave.  We learned how easy it is to achieve such an interesting design while still weaving in just plain weave with two colors.  

This month we are going to take Houndstooth a step further and add another shuttle to the mix!   

Weaving with three shuttles might seem tricky, but it really is going to be just as fun with two shuttles.  

Let's Weave Three Color Houndstooth!

  • We are offering this project as a kit to make gathering your supplies easy.  Our "Three Times the Fun" Towels are available in many color options.  Our kits come with all the yarns needed and the colors are wound on two cones to make winding your shuttles double strand a snap.
  • We've chosen our Aurora Earth 8/2 Cottons for this project.  You will need your base color (Color A) and two contrasting colors, (Color B) and (Color C).  We suggest using 8/2 cottons doubled in the slots and holes or 8/4 Cotton single.
  • Let's get our looms warped and weave together!  I'm here for you every step of the way!  

Order Your "Three Times the Fun" Weaving Kit Today!

~ Three Times the Fun Towel Pattern ~

Weave Structure:  plain weave
Equipment needed:  Rigid Heddle Loom; 23.4" weaving width or use our alternative warping widths for other size looms; 10 dent reed; 4 shuttles (three shuttles for weaving the body of the towels and one shuttle for weaving hems)
Yarns: Aurora Earth 8/2 Cotton in three colors: Rose Red (Color A), Special Pink (Color B) and Natural (Color C)
Amounts needed: Color A 1100 yds, Color B 590 yds, Color C 590 yds.  

Total warp ends: 234 (468 actual threads when using 8/2 cottons doubled)
Setts: 10 epi (doubled in slots and holes); 10 ppi (double strand)
Warp Length:  2 ¾ yards for two towels; 5 yards for four towels
Other supplies: matching sewing thread for hemming
Finished Dimensions: 20” x 26” each towel.
Available as a kit from Cotton Clouds, Inc.

Step 1:  Warping the Loom
Set up your loom to direct warp a length of 2 ¾ yards for two towels or 5 yards for four towels.  Warp four threads in each slot following the warp order chart.  I prefer to only warp in the slots on this step, but if you prefer to warp directly into the slots and the holes you can.

For this project we recommend direct warping but of course you can use your preferred warping method.  

With three color Houndstooth you will use Color A as your main color which will always be warped in every other slot. Then Color B and Color C will be warped in the slots between Color A.   

Warp Order:
Warp each slot with four threads.
Warping will be as follows:  AA, BB, AA, BB, AA, CC, AA, CC

To save time you can warp every other slot with Rose Red (Color A) for the entire weaving width.

Then with Pink (Color B) go back to the beginning of your reed and warp two slots then skip two empty slots. Continue across the entire width of your reed in this manner.

Then with Natural (Color C) go back to the beginning of your reed and warp the remaining empty slots.  

Note: There is a warp order chart in the PDF version of this pattern if you would like a visual chart for warping.

You can weave these towels on any size loom by increasing or decreasing the repeats.  If you have a 24" loom you will repeat the sequence 14 times.  If you have a 15" loom you will repeat 9 times.  If you have a 20" loom you will repeat 13 times. 

Step 2:  Sleying the Reed
Wind the warp onto the back beam and then transfer two threads from each slot into the holes.  You should now have two threads in each slot and two in each hole. Tie the yarns in small sections onto the front beam and tighten your warp. 

Step 3:  Preparing the Shuttles
Wind one shuttle with double strand Rose Red (Color A), second shuttle with double strand Pink (Color B) and third shuttle with double strand Natural (Color C).  Wind 4th shuttle with single strand Natural for hems. 
Step 4:  Weaving
Weave with scrap yarn to spread the warp evenly. 

Using the shuttle with single strand Natural, weave 1½” for hem. 

The weft order will mirror the warp order. Repeat the sequence for 30” for the entire body of each towel. 

Weft Order
***2 picks Rose Red (Color A)
2 picks Pink (Color B)
2 picks Rose Red (Color A)
2 picks Pink (Color B)
2 picks Rose Red (Color A)
2 picks Natural (Color C)
2 picks Rose Red (Color A)
2 picks Natural (Color C) ***
Repeat from *** to *** for 30 inches ending with 2 picks Rose Red on last repeat.

You can either carry the yarns up the sides when changing pink and natural shuttles or cut and tuck in tails.  I recommend carrying the yarns along the selvedges rather than cutting and tucking in tails.  A video demonstration for carrying yarns up the sides while weaving with three shuttles is available on the Cotton Clouds Rigid Heddle Facebook Group. Click here to view this video.

Once you have woven for 30" in the weft order above, finish with 1½” single strand Natural for the hem. 

Separate the towels with a few rows of scrap yarn then start next towel.  Remember to always start and end your towels with the single strand hem area.

When you have finished weaving your towels, weave a few rows with scrap yarn before cutting yarns off loom.

Step 5:  Finishing and Hemming
Remove the towels from the loom and sew a straight stitch across each end with sewing thread before cutting apart.  Using a hot iron, fold each hem over twice to get a nice flat edge.  Sew a straight stitch across securing each hem.  Machine wash in cool water and dry on normal in machine dryer.  Press with a warm iron if needed.  Towels will relax with more washes.



Enjoy or Gift Your Towels!
I hope you enjoy weaving these "Three Times the Fun" Towels.  I encourage you to weave some in your favorite colors!

Happy weaving! 

Jodi Ybarra

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