Oaxacan Home Textiles

16 December 2014


This a detail of the hand woven table cloth I ate on last night. The warp is thin , white and goes from right to left in the picture. As I walked through the stalls at the Zocolo last night I saw many variations on this cloth, for table cloths, bedspreads and drapes. As you can see this is plain weave.

Here in the building where I am staying I saw a floor loom, they call them treadle looms, in the patio. Today the gentleman that weaves showed me around and told me about the yarns they use.

From the pic you can see that the warp is finer than the weft and either natural or white. He told me that it is 30/2 cotton. I have also seen a light tan colored warp. A neutral colored warp means that you can weave many colorways on the same warp. It is not sett very close and the weft dominates but it is not weft-faced. the weft is a singles, loosely spun.

Here you can see the blue yarn that is used for weft beside two strands of 8/2 cotton I use all the time. It is fairly thick and has no strength. It is beat in very hard.
I thought that maybe the thicker wefts were multiple strands , but no where I could see it at the selvage it is a very thick singles. He said they used to have it spun thick at a commercial spinner near-by but that he does not have any now.
The design elements are color changes and thicker threads. The chevron in the middle looks like three colors were loosely plied together, could be one strand of s-ply and one strand of z-ply.

Nice textiles, plain weave, with colors and thicker weft for design elements.


One Response to “Oaxacan Home Textiles”

  1. Teri Says:

    Very interesting and useful information…especially about the chevron effect. I might give that a try. Would love to see a picture of this tablecloth’s selvedge if possible. Have fun! Teri


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