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Weaving is a method of textile production in which two distinct sets of yarns or threads are interlaced at right angles to form a fabric or cloth. Other methods are knitting, felting, and braiding or plaiting. The longitudinal threads are called the warp and the lateral threads are the weft or filling. (Weft or woof is an old English word meaning "that which is woven".) The method in which these threads are inter woven affects the characteristics of the cloth. Cloth is usually woven on a loom, a device that holds the warp threads in place while filling threads are woven through them. A fabric band which meets this definition of cloth (warp threads with a weft thread winding between) can also be made using other methods, including tablet weaving, back-strap, or other techniques without looms.
The way the warp and filling threads interlace with each other is called the weave. The majority of woven products are created with one of three basic weaves: plain weave, satin weave, or twill. Woven cloth can be plain (in one colour or a simple pattern), or can be woven in decorative or artistic design.
In general, weaving involves using a loom to interlace two sets of threads at right angles to each other: the warp which runs longitudinally and the weft (older woof) that crosses it. One warp thread is called an end and one weft thread is called a pick. The warp threads are held taut and in parallel to each other, typically in a loom. There are many types of looms.
- Shedding: where the ends are separated by raising or lowering heald frames (heddles) to form a clear space where the pick can pass
- Picking: where the weft or pick is propelled across the loom by hand, an air-jet, a rapier or a shuttle.
- Beating-up or battening: where the weft is pushed up against the fell of the cloth by the reed.
- Let off Motion: where the warp is let off the warp beam at a regulated speed to make the filling even and of the required design
- Take up Motion: Takes up the woven fabric in a regulated manner so that the density of filling is maintained
- warp stop motion
- weft stop motion
plain weave: plain, and hopsacks, poplin, taffeta, poult-de-soie, pibiones and grosgrain.
twill weave: these are described by weft float followed by warp float, arranged to give diagonal pattern. 2/1 twill, 3/3 twill, 1/2 twill. These are softer fabrics than plain weaves.,
satin weave: satins and sateens,
- complex computer-generated interlacings.
- pile fabrics : such as velvets and velveteens
Backer, Patricia (10 June 2005), "Technology in the Middle Ages, History of Technology", Technology and Civilization (Tech 198), San Jose, California, USA: San Jose State University
Bellerby, Rachel (2005), Chasing the Sixpence: The lives of Bradford Mill Folk, Ayr: Fort Publishing Ltd, ISBN
Collier, Ann M (1974), A Handbook of Textiles, Pergamon Press, p. 258, ISBN
Dooley, William H. (1914), Textiles (Project Gutenberg ed.), Boston, USA: D.C. Heath and Co.
Freethy, Ron (2005), Memories of the Lancashire Cotton Mills, Aspects of Local History, Newbury, Berkshire: Countryside Books, ISBN
Guest, Richard (1823). A compendious history of the cotton-manufacture. Manchester: Author, Printed by Joseph Pratt, Chapel Walks.
Geoffrey Timmins (1993), The last shift: the decline of handloom weaving in nineteenth-century Lancashire, Manchester University Press ND, ISBN
This article incorporates text from Textiles by William H. Dooley, Boston, D.C. Heath and Co., 1914, a volume in the public domain and available online from Project Gutenberg
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