I’ve had a bit of an argument with Bumberet on my Rigid Heddle Loom – not that it is their fault, it is just that it did take me a while to warp my first Bumberet scarf, and I managed to screw it up in some mysterious way: for some reason the warp threads where closer together on one side than on the other.
I suspect this was due to one of the heddles not being properly aligned. I had to finish it quickly, and so against my better judgmenet I persevered. The recipient loved it, and possibly I am the only one to notice, but obviously it does bother me a great deal.
And so I knew I had to have another go.
My first scarf was both simple and not-that-simple: simple in that I went with the “plain vanilla” Bumberet, which looks like a daisy chain in two colours, but also not-that-simple because warping requires groups of three thread warps, and direct warping odd numbers is a bit of a pain.
Incidentally, my threading for this draft on three heddles is this:
In the meantime though I’ve taken some time to play around with Bumberet, and it is a really lovely structure, so I am sure I will be getting back to it again and again, at least as much as twill!
So, what does a Bumberet family look like?
I am pretty sure that weave structure means something much more detailed on a shaft loom – the way I understand it, it stands for a point twill threading which however differs in tie-up from twill. I have found very clear explanations here and in Madelyn van der Hoogt her article in the Jan/Feb 2017 issue of Handwoven Magazine – if you are not a subscriber, a publicly available version is here. These two sources also explain other drafts in the same family, Bumberet family (namely Thickset, Velveret and Doucape) – Marcy Petrini’s draft is worth a thousand words!
Translated to a Rigid Heddle Loom, I see the Bumberet family as playing around with combinations of sheds that produce three-warp-thread-wide floats.
For a Rigid Heddle Loom with three heddles there is the additional complication that not all sheds are born equal, and I prefer to rethink the 4 shaft drafts so that I can avoid as much as possible having to raise or sink the first and last heddles together. So even sticking to “just” Bumberet I have found that you need three or four sheds.
I have found inspiration also here and here, and then play around a bit more – I put here a few drafts to show what is possible – these are easy to implement in my favourite setup. The four sheds that are used are as follows:
So first of all the easiest draft: one colour for weft, and one colour for warp!
This I find very very pretty! If you want to make your life only a bit more complicated, then you can use two colours (or more) for the warp, but in blocks of six, rather than 3, to avoid the odd number problem:
And playing around with the lift plan, I found out thathe blocks of six can also be used to produce a “Bumberet Houndstooth”
Having said that, odd repeats can be avoided also by using the warp thread doubled – if so, very nice patterns can be obtained, which are also colourful:
If doubling the warp thread, than even “going solo” won’t be too much of a problem, and again can generate very pretty patterns, which again you can find elsewhere, but here I have arranged them so that the lifting/sinking is convenient with three rigid heddles
Now the blocks are separated – and it did not take me long to see that they can also be alternated with stripes, as here:
Which one to choose? Ah, decisions, decisions…