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Silk Velvet

May 7, 2009

velvet-003My attempt at weaving a figured velvet.    At the time I had only one warp beam, so hung the supplementary warp off the back elevated on a bar above the warp beam, bundled into small sections and weighted.   Because the pile warp is taken up so much quicker it required a lot of getting up to lengthen and re-hang the weights.


I also didn’t have any of the other tools such as velvet rods and cutters.   I used bamboo skewers and a sharp one-sided blade – difficult to cut evenly across without slipping into the fabric!

Warp and Weft –  30/2  Tussah Silk, sett at 30 epi for the ground and doubled threads at 30epi for the supplementary warp.  I sleyed 3 working ends per dent in a 10 dent reed (1 ground, 2 pattern)    I measured the pile warp twice as long as the ground warp which was adequate for this short-pile sample warp.   I was woven at 28 ppi with a very firm beat to ensure the ground warp was woven evenly under the rods.


The ground is beige on 4 shafts.

The pile is represented in dark pink on shafts 5-10.

The tripled white weft “picks” represent the “velvet rods” .

The fabric was hand washed, rolled in a terry towel to gently remove most of the water.  I brushed the pile gently to even it and then dried flat, pile up.  I steam pressed the back with the pile laid on a terry towel and then brushed the pile gently.

I would like to try this again, but with some proper equipment!

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