Point Twill

Home Tuition My weaving Handwoven Scenes Handwoven Scarves Why I weave Weaving Terms

Point Twill and much more 

 After over thirty years of weaving I can still be amazed about the range of weaves that can be achieved from simple threadings on a four shaft loom.  

A few years ago, while letting people have a go on one of my teaching looms, I was asked how waffle weave was woven. I did not know and was surprised to find I could do it on the loom I had with me. It was threaded up for point twill and basket weave with a threading order of 2,1,2,3,4,3.  

 Whilst the drafts shown below are suitable for the inexperienced weaver, there is a lot of scope for experimentation. I have shown the drafts in tie up mode. As in the lift plan mode used in my previous article the main section shows the appearance of the weaving. Blue means that the weft is over the warp. The top section shows the order of threading the shafts.  The box in the right hand corner shows the lifts that are used and if you are using a floor loom the way that the pedals should be tied up. The dots in the box on the right hand side show which combinations of shafts should be lifted. If you are using a floor loom this will be the pedal that is used but it is straight forward to refer up to the box if you are using a table loom. For more information see Sue Dwyer’s article in Journal 220  


Straight twill  gives zig-zags


Lift sequence

1 and 2, 2 and 3, 3 and 4, 4 and 1)









Diamonds are formed by reversing the twill

Lift sequence

1 and 2, 2 and 3, 3 and 4, 1 and 4,

3 and 4, 2 and 3, 1 and 2, 1 and 4




Many variations can be woven by changing direction after different number of lifts

Lift sequence

1 and 2, 2 and 3, 3 and 4,1 and 4, 1 and 2,

1 and 4, 3 and 4, 2 and 3, 1 and 2, 1 and 4. 3 and 4




 Crosses appear on the draft using lift sequence 

1 and 2,2 and 3,

3 and 4, 2 and 3.

However with yarn, the warp shifts and hides the weft for lift 2 and 3



 Note that the above three drafts look very different on the reverse side. This is one of the many interesting features of drafts on this threading. 

Basket Weave

I first used the point twill threading when I wove a sampler to experiment with six fold basket weaves shown on page 48 of Marguerite Porter Davidson’s book.  Some of her examples given involve plain weave lifts as well as twill.

Basket weave sampler woven in double knitting wool  

Looking the sampler and the book at least 15 years later, I was surprised to find that the book uses the threading 121343.  Also most of the lifts I used were variations of ones given in the book. I always prefer experimenting with different lifts rather than following drafts when I am weaving. Also whilst I have had no problem following her drafts for overshot patterns, This particular page of Davidson’s book has very small photos of the weaving and some of the drafts are difficult to follow.  


The draft for the section toward the bottom right of the picture adapted for the 212343 threading.


The lifts are: 2 and 4 once, 3 and 4 three times, 1 and 3 once, 1 and 2,three times


 More recently I have woven a sampler in cashmere silk experimenting with some lifts using the 212343 threading. Since then I have used one of them for narrow bands in scarves which have mainly been woven in plain weave.   



Detail of scarf woven at 24epi (9.5 epc) in cashmere silk blend (2/30nm) from Uppingham Yarns


The draft used for the scarves. The lift sequence is (1 and 3, 1 and 2) repeated three times, followed by (2 and 4, 3 and 4) three times


A pick of plain weave was used between each pattern row because it looks better if the sett has been chosen for plain weave rather than the closer set used for twill weave

 With the benefit of the Fibreworks programme, I decided to weave all the drafts in Davidson’s book in a systematic way, using the 212343 threading which I prefer. I wove most of the drafts using knitting wool set at 12 epi. I left out draft III by mistake and gave up on draft XI as I could not see any logic in it! I found that some of the drafts were improved by changing the plain weave sequences.  

I also experimented and found a particularly pleasing draft , so I used it to weave a scarf on the second half of the warp.  



The draft used for weaving the scarf.

  Lift sequence 3 and 4,1,3 and 4,2 and 3, 1 and 2,4,1 and 2, 2 and 3


The front of the weaving looks very like the draft. The reverse side looks very different to both the front and to the draft of the back shown below


  Canvas Weave

 On a course in 2004 Melanie Venes showed me scarves woven in Canvas Weave. Once again it is the same threading..  



Lift sequence  

1 and 3, 1 and 2, 1 and 3,

2 and 4, 3 and 4, 2 and 4

Detail of scarf woven in canvas weave



 It is particularly effective if a darker yarn is used for shafts 1 and 4.  I have found the warp spacing is particularly important. It works well with double knitting wool at 12epi (4.7epc). In the photo red yarn was used for shafts 1 and 4. In the top section of the all the weft picks are woven in the green yarn threaded through shafts 2 and 3. For the bottom section I used the red yarn for lifts 1 and 2 and 3 and 4.

 Waffle Weave

 The draft below is for Waffle weave. I found the draft on page 48 of Practical Modern Weaving.  The draft is also given on page 84 of Mastering Weave Structures by Sharon Alderman  



Lift sequence

1; 2; 1 and 3; 1, 2 and 4; 1, 2 and 3;

1, 2 and 4; 1 and 3; 2;


 Sampler woven in Waffle weave using wool of count 2/8.4 nm (2 ply Shetland from Jamieson and Smith) set at 12 epi (4.7epc)


Marguerite Porter Davison A Handweaver’s Pattern Book 1944

Rosemary Murray Practical  Modern Weaving Van Nostrand Reinhold  1975

Sharon Alderman Mastering Weave Structures