A Brief History of Weaving

Mariah Breitenberg/January 30, 2013

Weaving is a method of fabric production in which two distinct sets of yarns or threads are interlaced at right angles to form a fabric or cloth. There is evidence that weaving began as early as the Paleolithic era, however it is predominantly believed to have been widespread by Biblical times. In the Islamic culture, both horizontal and vertical looms could be found all over Asia, Africa and Europe (around 700 AD) and by medieval times weaving was the most important of the craft trades. The industrial revolution saw the invention of the power loom (before everything had been woven by hand). The Jacquard loom in particular allowed complicated patterns to be woven using punch cards to determine which threads of colored yarn should appear on the upper side of the cloth.


Above, a woman sits at a hand loom weaving.

The art of weaving is a skill that has enjoyed something of a renaissance lately in the worlds of art, design and fashion. One of a kind, patterned textiles have exploded onto the design scene in the past few years.


Above, weaving by Hannah Waldren.


Above, pillows by New Friends.


Above, one of Brook&Lyn’s beautiful weavings.

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Above, a Burber craft rug from Morocco.

The invention of the loom revolutionized the fashion industry, providing rich textures, pattern, and color to create with. Fashion power house, Missoni, is probably best known for the intricate patterns and textiles they send down the runway each season.

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