Have you ever wanted to repeat a successful project but struggled to remember exactly what you did? Have you ever promised to share a draft with a friend, but been unable recall all the details? It’s immensely frustrating to realize that you have to stop and revisit a problem you have already tackled because you didn’t write down what you discovered.
Keeping records of your weaving projects takes a little bit of time, but taking simple weaving notes can save you hours later on.
The medium doesn’t matter
You may have a strong preference for pencil and paper; you may be a fan of all things digital. It doesn’t matter. Organize your weaving notes in a manner that suits you and you will be much more likely to maintain them.
Use folders to sort projects into categories that are useful to you: this could be by end product (scarves, towels, rugs) or it could be by weave structure (twills, double weave, lace). One advantage of electronic record keeping is that it is very easy to store your notes by product AND by weave structure — but if you are diligent, you can manage this on paper, too.
Whichever option you choose, you will need to find a way to label your woven samples — because you are sampling, aren’t you? — so that you can match them to your notes. When I kept mainly paper records, I filed them in a ring binder and used plastic pockets to hold samples. Now that I keep most of my weaving notes electronically, I write key information on mini luggage tags and pin those to my samples.
The nitty gritty
So what should you record? There are two kinds of information that I like to be able to look back at.
First, the technical information
This technical information is what we usually think of when we talk about weaving notes:
- What threading did I use?
- How long was the warp?
- How many ends?
- What was the sett for that yarn?
- How much did it shrink?
You will want to keep a copy of the draft you used, whether it came from a book, an online resource or was one you designed yourself. The other technical information — relating to yarn, sett, finishing, etc. — can be recorded on a standard record sheet such as this free downloadable one.
There is a second kind of information that is equally valuable. As you will see if you look at this sheet, I have included space to record
- The goal you set out to achieve with your project
- Your reflections on the project afterwards: What went well? What didn’t work out? What did you learn? Were you satisfied with what you achieved?
You may think the lessons you have learned are unforgettable — especially if you have just had a terrifying experience with the warp from hell! But in (we hope) a lifetime of weaving projects, there’s a lot to remember. Make it easy by writing it down!
Download the FREE Weaving Notes Sheet
Keep track of all your weaving projects with this FREE record sheet. You can download it and print it to use over and over again.