Jacquard Looms

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The Science Museum in London, England has some fascinating exhibits, jacquard looms, spinning equipment and other historical weaving & computer technology.
Jacquard Looms
Weaving patterns is an intricate task, but is also repetitive. Joseph Jacquard developed a system of punched cards, where the pattern was ‘programmed’ into the cardboard cards. These controlled the lifting of the sheds and created the patterning. This later led to the development of the modern day computer.

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Jacquard Loom
Science Museum
London, England
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Weaving and Handspinning Equipment
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Making Roving

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Note the ”weights” that provide the tension for the back beam.

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Flying Shuttle Loom
Shuttles were stacked into a feeder mechanism and changed automatically
Dolly’s Sweater
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Dolly’s Sweater
Sweater knit from Dolly the cloned sheep

Do you remember the great controversy a few years ago, when Dolly, a cloned sheep was engineered? A bioengineered embryo had been implanted into a 6 year old ewe’s womb and Dolly developed as a clone. At 3 years of age, Dolly had much older DNA and it was expected that her life expectancy would be much shorter.The Cystic Fibrosis Trust held a competition to design a sweater using Dolly’s fleece. The fleece was cleaned, processed and spun at the School of Textile Industries in Leeds.

BBC – Dolly Fleeced for Fashion

Yuckles – Dolly the Cloned Sheep
Ok, a silly link here. Watch Dolly get cloned.

Time Magazine

The Cover from March 1997, Time Magazine of Dolly

Dolly
A Picture of Dolly.

Roslin Institute
Dolly’s home.

And now you can clone your pets!

If you are interested in the history of looms and computing technology, a visit to the Science Museum in London, UK is worth it. From Babbage’s Difference engine, atomic clocks, jacquard looms, Cray mainframes and other high-tech artifacts will take you back a step in time.

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Old Computers made with tubes and wires.

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Cray mainframe computer
In use until the early 1990’s,
Though not very clear in the photo – the blue in the centre is a huge mass of wires. Imagine when one of those shorts out!

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Computers and Looms

Hand Weaving Books
Weaving on a Little Loom (Everything you need to know to get started with weaving, includes 5 simple projects

The Key to Weaving: A Textbook of Hand Weaving for the Beginning Weaver
The Weaver’s Companion (The Companion Series)
Learning to Weave
The Big Book of Weaving: Handweaving in the Swedish Tradition: Techniques, Patterns, Designs and Materials
The Handweaver’s Pattern Directory
A Weaver’s Book of 8-Shaft Patterns: From the Friends of Handwoven
Krokbragd: How to Design & Weave
Doubleweave: On Four to Eight Shafts
Double Weave: Theory and Practice<
Magic of Doubleweave: The Best of Weaver’s (Best of Weaver’s series)
Weaving In the Arts: Widening the Learning Circle

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Author: Paivi Suomi

I've had an interest in weaving, looms, yarns and textiles since I was a small child. I learned to knit, crochet, sew, do needlepoint at my mother's knee. My grandmother was a Saami from northern Norway. I am very interested in studying more about tradtional Saami and Finnish style weaving and handicrafts. Paivi Suomi