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Jan 21

Dunes Shawl

A soft and thick grey and ivory dunes shawl resting on a dressmakers form

Late last spring at Schacht we received a multitude of yarns from several yarn companies intended for a unique piece for the summer TNNA fashion show – a woven vest with warp made up of rope all created on the Schacht Incredible Rope Machine. One day the package from Fairmount Fibers came with a marvelous array of yarns. Ben opened it and we both admired the selection.

I was immediately smitten with two Manos del Uruguay single ply yarns, a super bulky and a worsted. Not only were the yarns soft and lofty to the touch, the colorways mimicked these qualities in creamy white and ivory, light to medium heather gray, and the most subtle pale blue. Aaah, this was one of those emotional fiber moments. Recognizing this, dear Ben handed the skeins to me.

As luck would have it, we needed a Flip loom project for the show, so I planned and created this shawl. Although soft and a single ply, the yarn was plenty strong and ideal for use as a warp yarn on the Flip Loom. This soft and oh-so-cozy shawl – perfect for a winter day – continues to make me sigh.

Skeins of grey and ivory yarn laying upon woven fabric

Finished Size:

74” x 14 ½”

Weave Structure:

Plain weave


Two single ply Manos del Uruguay—Franca, F30 Menhir, super bulky, 100% superwash merino, 114 yards per skein; Maxima, M7311 Zebra, worsted, 100% extra fine merino wool, 219 yards per skein.


— Franca 170 yards, Maxima 174 yards.


— Franca 189 yards, Maxima 189 yards.

A woven dunes shawl with a silver broach



20” Flip loom, 5-dent rigid heddle reed, 2 11″ slim boat shuttles.



Warping method:

Indirect, measuring both yarns together on a warping board and then sleying the heddle and winding on.

Warp order:

Sley the reed alternating Maxima (in holes) and Franca (in slots) with Maxima on each edge.

Number of warp ends:

Franca 47, Maxima 48

Width in Reed:


Warp length:

Total length 130” (project length 92” with 68” for shawl and 24” for fringe at either end, plus 15% take-up shrinkage, plus 24” loom waste)


Approximately 5


Begin with 3 picks of Maxima and hemstitch in groups of threes. Weave the balance of the piece (68”) alternating 2 picks of Franca and 2 picks of Maxima. This gives the piece extra texture. End with 3 picks of Maxima and repeat hemstitching at end.


Wash in cool water and roll in towel to remove excess water. I decided to slightly full the piece so put it in a low heat dryer for just a very few minutes. I monitored the progress every minute. Lay flat to dry, then trim fringe to 8”.

Helpful tip:

Although not presented in the project instructions above, for the show, I actually needed enough warp for a completed project and a woven sample on the Flip loom. To extend my warp I used a clever trick that Jane sometimes uses. I used our floor loom tie-up cords on the back beam and bundled warp threads, securing with a lark’s head knot, to extend my warp by about 6”.

A Schacht Cricket loom warped with a thick single ply yarn

More about Manos del Uruguay and Fairmount Fibers

From the Manos website

Manos del Uruguay was born in 1968 out of a simple question: How can we improve the quality of life of Uruguay’s rural women?
The answer was in handcrafts, using skills inherited from our mothers and grandmothers and the raw material that we had at hand: wool.
That’s how Manos del Uruguay was founded, to give Uruguay’s rural women jobs, that would mean, not just an income, but also an opportunity to personally develop and gain independence, keeping their roots and traditions, close to their community and families.”

Read the whole story.