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How to Weave Cotton Woven Rugs With the Rya

How to Weave Cotton Woven Rugs With the Rya

Pulling out loops in the cotton woven rugs is a very good way of adding texture to a rug. The length of the loop can be adjusted to the needs of the design and if it is long enough it can be cut to make a kind of tuft.

Method of working

With a contrast-colored cotton thread, mark on the warp threads where a loop is required. Weave in the usual way as far as the mark and beat the weft into place. Make a weft loop of the required size at the marked point and pull it into place. Continue to weave the weft in the normal way.

Loops in the cotton woven rugs can have rows of plain weave in between, or can be made in alternate rows of weaving. They can be massed to form textured areas in the design or scattered to form background interest.

You can also do knotting or tufting to the cotton woven rugs. Rya is a Scandinavian term applied to long tufted rugs. Originally, rya rugs were used in Scandinavian countries as bedcovers, as well as floor coverings and wall hangings. Today rya is used mainly as a floor covering and wall hanging.

The colors in a rya can be mixed very freely and give the cotton woven rugs an appearance of great richness and depth. Because it is three-dimensional, the light falls at a different angle on each single thread, changing the color from light to dark. The length of the pile, the material of the pile yarn, the amount of plain weave and the spacing of the knots are some of the elements that can be varied endlessly to produce rugs of different thickness, resilience, texture and weight.

When designing hand woven wool rugs, the knots are tied into the warp by hand and have two or more rows of plain tapestry weave between each row of knots. If there is only a narrow strip of weaving between the rows of knots, they will stand on end and the deeper the space between the rows of tufting the flatter the tufts will lay. The knots are not taken to each selvedge because this would cause the rug to curl at the edges. The selvedge is woven with a strong weft to make a protective edging to the hand woven wool rugs.

The weft is woven in plain weave until the point where a row of tufts is required. The tufts are knotted into position over two ends right across the warp when the warp is closed, that is, there is no shed. They must not be pulled too tight because this will affect the spacing of the warp and cause difficulty in weaving the following rows of plain weaving. Two or more threads (an even number) are left for the selvedge. The selvedge, or border, is then woven to the correct height on these threads, so that the new row of plain tapestry weave goes right across the warp from selvedge to selvedge and the same number of weft picks are woven on the selvedge or border threads and pushed firmly into place.

In the weaving of the hand woven wool rugs, care must be taken over the size of yarn used for tufts, because, if it is not thick enough, gaps will show between each knot and if too thick, the finished rug will buckle. The thickness of the weft varies according to the spacing of the warp. Thicker weft is used if there are only a few threads to the inch in the warp and thinner weft is used if there are more threads to the inch in the warp. For example: if there are four ends per inch in the warp, use two or three threads of two-ply carpet wool in the weft; if there are six ends per inch, use two threads, and if there are eight ends per inch, use one thread of two-ply carpet wool.