There’s a lot of vocabulary to learn when you start weaving. Check out the weaving glossary to learn more about weaving terms and their definitions. Ever wondered exactly what weavers mean when they say, “Use tabby?” Find out in our glossary of weaving terms.


Atwater Bronson lace

What is Atwater Bronson lace? Atwater Bronson lace, or Bronson lace, is a unit weave with (usually) six ends and six picks in a unit. Either plain weave or lace can be woven in each independent unit. Some threads group together and leave spaces in the fabric. This combination of groups and spaces create lace.…



What is a weaving beam? In weaving, a beam is a horizontal roller on the front (cloth beam) or back (warp beam) of a loom. Beaming is to wind the warp onto the warp beam. The layers of warp are usually separated with heavy paper or warping sticks.


Block weaves

Block weaves are weave structures where the same warp and weft threads can produce two different interlacements. One is considered “pattern” and one is considered “background.” A single block is formed by all of the warp and weft threads that always produce pattern or background together. Various examples of block weaving  


Cross weaving

Weaving cross definition In weaving, a cross is an “x” made in the warp when winding off a warp on a warping board. It can be made on one end or both, and it helps prevent tangles by maintaining the order of the threads.



Weaving draft definition In weaving, draw-in is where the selvedges pull-in and subtract from the width in the reed.




Weaving fulling definition In weaving, fulling is a cloth finishing process by which the fabric is washed and the yarns shrink and bond together. It’s similar to felting, although a piece can be fulled without having the texture of felted fibers. Fulling tends to shrink the fabric, but the extent depends on the particular yarn…



In weaving, heddles are rods attached to the shafts. Each heddle has an eye, and a single warp thread passes through it. Heddles can be made from flat metal, wire, nylon braid, or string. Threading plastic heddles on a rigid heddle loom.

Huck lace

Huck lace definition In weaving, huck lace is a unit weave with at least six ends and picks in a unit. The unit is divided into half units, and each half unit has an odd number of ends. Three combinations can be woven: plain weave in both half units, plain weave in one half unit…



Lamms definition In weaving, a lamms is a horizontal bar on the loom. The lamms connect the shafts to the treadles.

Lease sticks

Lease sticks definition In weaving, lease sticks are sticks that come with a loom. They usually match the loom width. Lease sticks can be used during the warping process to hold the cross.



M’s and O’s

A simple weave forming two blocks of pattern with four shafts. The warp ends in one block weave plain weave as individual ends while groups of warp ends interlace in plain weave order with the same weft in the alternate block. Since pattern cannot be woven in both blocks at the same time, M’s and…




Overshot definition In weaving overshot is a supplementary-weft structure with a plain weave ground cloth. The supplementary weft floats over an entire block, under an entire block, or over and under alternate ends in a block to form halftones. Since the pattern area is limited by float length (blocks cannot form pattern independently), overshot is not…


Picks Per Inch (PPI)

In weaving, PPI stands for picks per inch. This is the number of weft threads per inch of woven cloth. When PPI and EPI are the same, that results in a balanced weave. Picks, also known as weft shots, can be counted with a linen tester or pick counter.

Plain weave (Tabby weave)

Plain weave definition Often interchanged with the term tabby weaving, plain weave is a simple weave structure. One weft passes over one warp end and under one warp end. The adjacent warp end and weft pick reverse the actions of the first. The minimum number of threads required for plain weave is two warp threads…


Reeds & dents

A weaving reed is a steel comb (usually a plastic comb on a rigid heddle loom) that separates the warp threads at the correct density for the warp width. In the U.S., reeds are designated by the number of spaces (dents) per inch. For example, they can be 6, 8, 10, 12, 15, etc. A…


Thrums (Loom waste)

Also known as loom or warp waste, thrums refer to the length of warp threads in the front and back that are not woven. They are cut off after the project is finished, and are often a source of frustration for weavers who are reluctant to waste the yarn. Ideas for using thrums include small knitted…



Weaving drafts

In weaving, a draft is a diagram that represents a woven pattern. A full draft will depict the threading, tie-up, treadling sequence, and a drawdown of the cloth.

Weaving floats

In weaving, floats refer to warp or weft threads that do not intersect. They are intentional “skips” that occur in  woven cloth. Floats of two different sizes are used on this piece to show off the quality of the homespun yarn.