DDW & DS ?
What am I talking about ?
It’s shortage for Deflected Double Weave & Differential Shrinkage. In the photo below I used the deflected double weaving technique with differential shrinkage. Deflected double weave is a weaving technique where a woven cell is surrounded by other large floating cells. This might be either warp or weft floats or both. Combining it with differential shrinkage means that single cell has to be of a shrinkage fiber, and the other cell of a non-shrinkage fiber. This will give you the ‘balls/puffs’. In my weaving below (left photo), the yellow cell/grid is a shrinking fiber. The purple ‘frame’ around the yellow cell/grid is a non-shrinking fiber. Washing the cloth at 60 degrees gives you really cool purple puffs (right photo). 

Deflected double weave + differential shrinkage

In weaving, differential shrinkage means that some fibers shrink more than others when you wash them. In a woven fabric, this can create interesting textural effects. 

When you use shrinking fibers like wool with a non-shrinking fibers like silk it can create interesting effects. As long as you are weaving it will not show, but when the fabric is washed, the shrinking fiber will pull the non-shrinking fiber into balls.

Knowing your fibers is essential when you want to use differential shrinkage in your weavings. You have to know which fibers shrink and which won’t.

The most common fiber that shrinks is of course wool because it has scales that ‘click’ into each other. Some ‘superwashed’ wools will not shrink as much as you might hope. That’s because they have been ‘processed’ to smoothen or remove the scales. 

Shrinking fibers

  • Alpaca, Wool, Cashmere

Non-shrinking fibers

  • Linen, Silk, Polyester, Cotton, Mohair, Superwash wool

The fun part starts when you use shrink fibers and non-shrink fibers in a design. If you create your design correct, you can achieve really cool designs and textures like ruffles, pleats, puffs, balls, folds, etc…