I wrote last week about the most familiar version of stitched double cloth – where a single warp end from one of the two layers is woven in with one pick of the other layer, so tieing the two cloths together at that point. 

There are other ways to achieve a similar end, each with slightly different effects.  This week I’ll describe the weft stitching method.

Using the weft of one layer to migrate from front to back cloths in the same pick is done especially if you are working in blocks.  This is the way you work if you are using pick-up techniques.  It is basically interchanging layers. 

For example, here we have a simple block draft on 8 shafts, using a separate colour to denote each of 4 blocks.  Block A is in purple and is threaded on shafts 1 and 2.  Block B = pink on 3 &  4.  Block C = green on 5 & 6, and Block D = yellow on 7 & 8.   I am using two weft colours, one light blue and the other darker blue. 

In this first draft, you can see that I have blocks A & B on top, weaving with the light blue. 

I have woven shafts 1 & 2 from block A and shafts 3 & 4 from block B, with the light blue weft, thereby requiring the dark blue weft to weave underneath, so raising shafts 1 – 4 and weaving only on 5 & 6 from block C and 7 & 8 from block D. 

The next step is to swap over at least one of the blocks, and in the next 8 picks, I have woven blocks A & D on the top with the light blue weft, and blocks B & C underneath with the dark blue weft. 

You can see the change in the colouration.  Following the previous principle, it is easy to see which shafts have been lifted.

So far, this is standard double cloth, with two separate layers.  Now we want to stitch the two layers together.  

To do this, we need to interchange the blocks, where the weft travels from one side of the fabric to the other. 

You can see from this last section that the dark blue weft is now coming to the surface, sharing it with the light blue weft.  It takes a little more thought but if you look at the tie-up. you can see how to work it out. 

Here is the back view of the same draft.

If you haven’t tried this before, give it a go.  If you use similar materials, you won’t get much in the way of texture, although colour can be really creative.  If you use one warp with a shrinking yarn, and the other as non-shrinking, and one weft with shrinking and one weft non-shrinking, then you will start to get some textural results.

Next week, I’ll show you a third way of stitching the two layers together which can really give you some great surface texture results….