Friday, 14 August 2015

Broadening our Horizons

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Broadening our Horizons !

I have been reworking this post countless times, & still not satisfied :-(. Fact is, after all stepwise pics were taken & notated, and the post drafted, I figured out an easier way of closing multi-Warp looms/tallies. So took more pics & notated those, too. However, there seemed to be a lot of confusion because I couldn’t sync the earlier & latter sets together. Posting as separate sections would increase length and redundancy . This unhappiness made me procrastinate for many days, till I decided to take a fresh set of photos of the entire process in one go. So far so good. But then Another option to make 4-Warp frame loomed on my restless brain ! Had to take pics & notate those as well. Ultimately, the number of pics was still too large, causing me to compile them in 2 separate pdf files – for Warp 4 & Warp 5 Cluny tatting. Please excuse my mistakes or omissions.

So here it is – my way of making the multiple-veined Cluny leaves , with an additional step …

“What seems to be the problem, Scotty ?!”
Most tutorials on Cluny tatting, irrespective of the loom, tell you to remove all the loops after the tally is complete, move the loom shuttle & weaving shuttle aside, identify the right thread to pull, & then start to close each loop in sequence.
This is not too difficult in a Warp 3 loom where only 2 loops need to be closed. However, as the Warps increase, the loops tend to overlap with each other when the loom is being set up . The loop made first also needs to be closed first. But later loops/thread get stacked over it, and need to be placed aside before closing can start. Hence, at closing time, there can be a lot of confusion if one removes all the loops and Then starts to close each.  Shivers!
Battleground Closure ... just before actual battle !
.... and this is when I have pinned down all the loops for taking a decent photo without harming the tally. Imagine trying to keep them all in their place, closing one at a time, trying to identify which thread to pull, all this while holding on to the tally in one hand !!! Violent jitters & shivers !
 "What are we looking at, a 20th century Rome?" 
-- Kirk (Bread and Circuses)

“All fixed now, Cap’n”
As they say, a step(!) in time …. Turns out, all it requires is ‘One Small Step’ ‘Behind the Scenes’ where the Space Shuttle passes under the horizontal bar/loop
A Warp 5 loom from front
This is the usual way loops would be stacked
This is how the loops should be stacked !
Why ? The reason lies in the Sequence with which each loop is closed. In earlier figure, one can easily see that the loop which needs to be closed 1st is ‘blocked’ by the next loop which is stacked over it ! While closing this loop, the others will get in the way.
So, if one has to start closing, one will have to first pull off loop EF to get to AB. But EF is ‘blocked’ by I ! So here’s the messy path : remove I , then remove EF, only Then start to close AB, while the former flop about. Shivers violently !

And it becomes quite loopy – loops flopping about, messy, confusing, tendency to knot/twist. 

"Just before they went into warp, I beamed the whole kit and kaboodle 
into their engine room, where they'll be no tribble at all." 
-- Scotty, explaining how he got rid of the tribbles (The Trouble With Tribbles) 

One Small Step behind the scenes !
Here is the step , shown on a Warp 3 loom (translucent sheet used as loom to show path)

This extra step can be effectively applied to normal 2-veined (Warp 3) tallies as seen in the pics above. In a finger loom, however, for Warp 3 it may be prudent not to, since the AB loop across middle & ring finger acts as a kind of support for the central Warp. However, as number of Warps increase, it is advisable to take this extra step.

“Lt. Uhura, co-ordinates of the flight path, please”
As mentioned in my earlier posts, this card loom is designed by Judith Connors. I have only increased the number of slits at the top & bottom to include more Warps. Also, the same loom came in handy while making the hanging cluny leaf & split cluny. Please note, the concept remains the same ; any loom, Including Finger Loom, will perform the same function .. I just happen to have used this first & am really happy with it.
  • So now, the adapted loom has 5 slits on the top edge & 4 slits at the bottom. One slit at the right side to anchor the loom shuttle/ball thread (The shuttle can also be anchored behind the last slit it exits as shown in Tip #2 here , or in any of the empty slits or on the slit in the right side.
  • The top edge has 1 extra slit on left side where the 1st Warp starts. The bottom slits can be synced to the top, or be closer together in a converging fashion at the center of base edge. Simply cut the additional slits parallel to the existing ones (if inserted in the same original slits, there will be a great deal of overlapping & messiness when closing).
  • Loom thread moves vertically in the front , & horizontally at the back.
  • Vertical movement in front forms the Warps & is indicated by capital letters.
  • Horizontal movement at back forms the loop & is indicated by small letters.
  • Sequence of letters from A, B, C, … & so on indicates the direction & sequence that the loom Shuttle will follow. Thus SH2 goes in through the slit at A & comes out at B ; goes down to C & up through  D, and so on for the number of Warps required.
One can work out the sequence for ANY kind of tally, once the concept becomes clear &/or some practice is under one’s belt. Just try to figure out the sequence of loop closure (eg. when I pull this, that loop closes & so on), & that will give you an idea of where the threads will emerge after tally is closed – will it become a regular tally (both threads emerge at top), a hanging tally (both thread emerge at base), a split cluny (one thread emerging at either end), or a 3- or 4-veined tally.
  • The Warps should remain taut/tensioned. This serves 2 purposes : 1. to keep the weaving even & consistent ; 2. to pull up the top edge of the card, so that there is plenty of space to pass shuttle to & fro for weaving. (this lift can be inferred from the shadows thrown by the Warp threads in many pics)
TIP : If any Warp comes a bit loose, it can be tightened easily by tugging at the thread segment that follows immediately after it ….on till the anchoring point. 

This is only One way of making the Warps. A Craftree member & I simultaneously figured out how to make a 4-Warp tally, but by looping the Warps differently ! I haven’t tried the other, but what I like about my method is that the initial looping remains Constant irrespective of how many Warps one wants. Hence much easier to remember – both while making the frame, while weaving, as well as while closing the tally.

For purposes of brevity, I have set up the stepwise pictorial (& instructions) for each in separate pdf files . The pictorial shows steps required for setting up the loom (including the extra small step, along with simultaneous views of the back), & then the sequence to close the tally after weaving.

“Mr Sulu, Warp four straight ahead, please”
WARP  FOUR (gives a 3-veined tally)
Version 1

Version 2 

Click to download Cluny Tatting on a Warp Four Loom (both versions). The tutorial includes step-by-step pictures, as well as instructions on Setting up the Warp 4 loom,  Weaving & equally important , the Ckosing pathway !

My very 1st Warp 4 tally was a Split Cluny (which I didn't even of then!) , with the loom & weaving threads emerging at opposite ends. I didn't jot down that sequence, but have recently made a Hanging Warp 4/3-veined Cluny leaf. Sharing the WIP photo  (it is not include in the pdf).

TIP : If one is using a finger loom for multiple Warp tallies, I would suggest using 2 different coloured paper clips one on each of the 2 base loops. This will help in identifying which loop belongs to which Warps, when closing time arrives.

‘Mr Sulu, Warp 5 full speed ahead’
WARP  FIVE (gives a 4-veined tally)
I used a translucent plastic sheet for this loom, so that the shuttle movement behind the scenes can be captured easily. However, not recommended for actual Cluny tatting, since the slits are pretty sharp & do not allow easy adjustment of Warp tension, etc.
TIP : One can start weaving a tally from Any Warp, not necessarily the extreme left one. Merely keep the under-over movement in mind. The above photo shows the tally at Warp 3 & SH1 under Warp 4, over Warp 5.  With SH1 now at extreme right, start normal weaving)

Click to download Cluny Tatting On a Warp Five Loom  Includes complete tutorial on loom/frame, weaving,  and closing sequence. 

Why Increase the Warps ?  
Out of curiosity & a challenge initially ! It is one way of  broadening/widening the tally, but keeping the inter-vein distance short, even & constant. The additional veins also impart their own beauty & fineness. 
Multiple Warps become essential for creating various shapes & effects of tallies, too (something I will discuss/show in my last post, along with many little tips & tricks)


In case one needs to hide thread tails within a tally, it can be done as shown in the collage. The shift from one Warp to the other after a few weaves ensures that the tail gets locked in. I learnt this when in my earlier attempt here, if I pulled at the ‘hidden’ tail, it could still slide ! However, by shifting, the tail becomes secure. After snipping closely, it is not visible at all. 
(While testing, I kept tugging, thus leaving a telltale crossover in the front. My mistake.)

Heartiest thanks to All those wonderful tatters who shared their 
bounty of knowledge & skills with us. 
Where would we be without them – no lift off possible !!!

Related Posts : 12 Cluny Tatting Tips


  1. Oh gosh muskaan, you boggle my mind! There's an awful lot of work here, many hours involved. Thank you for being so generous in sharing your discoveries.

    1. Thanks, Jane :-) I haven't spent as many hours on the Actual Cluny tatting as I have on writing out these posts (& so many notated pics thrown in the bin!) .... what does that say of my blogging skills, eh ;-(
      I still have one more post to go before I wrap up my experiments for this 'session'.

  2. Oh wow! Wonderful and very informative! Again I will have to bookmark this for when I have more free time :). Thanks again muskaan for sharing :).

    1. Thanks Jenn :-)
      I suggest you keep a really large chunk of time, because you might find these as addictive as I have ;-P Wait for the next post, though, to be really excited ! Hope I get it done soon so that I can start on other commitments, & blog-hopping too ....

  3. Interesting, thank you for sharing, there's a lot of work behind this post, and a lot for us to try.

    1. Thanks Ninetta :-D
      Can't wait to see your twist on these !

  4. Thank you, muskaan, this is great! I haven't had a chance to try this yet, but I'm more excited to try clunies than I've ever been after seeing this. I have a lot of things on the fire right now so I don't know when I'll get a chance to try, but it is definitely on my Must Do list. I love all of your Star Trek references! Set a course for home, Lt. Chekov!

    1. Aye, Aye, Captain !!!
      Yes, it Is time to wrap up ... just Have to squeeze in one last post, though, which I hope will get you even more excited ....
      Thank you so much for your kind words & eager to see your creations whenever you get the time :-)

  5. Fabulous work here, great detail! I too like the star trek themes. I wonder though, should "warp" be changed to "wrap" for a more general, not necessarily English speaking audience...this may cause confusion when translated. Having said that though, I will print the current version because I think it is very clever. Thanks so much for you're hard work and sharing here, I might just try this technique soon.

    1. One just Had to go with the Star Trek theme with a term like Warp ;-P
      I do realise the immense confusion overlapping or multiple terms cause (Judith keeps trying to set us right on that account!), so I try to avoid 'new' terms. These, however, are a collation from various tuts, etc. & the only change I really made was in the capitalization.
      Even in Cluny tatting, you will come across a few tuts/patterns that use 'pass' for an entire weave/wrap. Just as long as we understand the similarity & difference .....
      Thank you so much for your nice words :-)

  6. Hi Again- Now I am reading through other cluny tatting tutorials- and both terms seem to be used: Wrap and Warp.... hmmm... I might need to find the craftree thread to explain this and get my head around the terms....

    1. Hi Fiona :-)
      Just a quick note .... Warp (I have used a capital for clarity & distinction) refers to the frame on a loom (finger/card/box....) made over which tallies will be woven. This is generally made with ball/SH2 thread. A minimum of 3 Warps are required for a good weaving frame & breadth, but one can add more Warps...

      wrap/weave refers to the actual 'stitch' that is being woven on to that frame, using SH1. One wrap/weave consists of 2 passes : from right to left & back to right. Think of it as a double stitch in tatting ;-)

      I have tried to encapsulate these in a table in one of my previous posts, if you have missed it. Hope this helps ?

    2. Thanks Muskaan, that does help! I have been reading through your past posts on this (from the links in this post) and you have explained it very clearly there too- I just haven't really engaged in the finer points of Cluny Tatting before. Your patient explanation is much appreciated :)

    3. You're welcome, Fiona, glad it helped :-)
      In the Craftree thread, Judith explained to me that these are terms from textile weaving (weft from weaving) .. easy to remember when one thinks of Warps as the vertical pathways & wraps/weaves/wefts as the horizontal passage/movement .
      I'm so deeply wrapped up in this for the present that it's really extended far beyond my time frame ! ;-P

  7. Wow, tu es une véritable encyclopédie !

    1. Not yet, Emilie, not yet ;-P
      Thanks so much for your exhilarating comment !