I tried a re-thread for Swedish Lace and sett at 18 epi. It was really loose and tried 2/20 cotton – NOT pretty. But it is not that much looser than the “recommended” in some sett charts. Why is lace is sett looser than plain weave and twills are sett closer? Lace migrates like twill – why not sett closer?
I don’t know what the books say but I can tell you I have woven tons and tons and tons of lace in my life and I always sett my lace for plain weave. Practically every lace structure with the exception of Canvas weave is really plain weave, with a little something extra added to the tie-up to make a longer float in certain places.
Swedish Lace is a variation of Huck. It has an incidental thread placed between the units so that they can be threaded more than once but there is no incidental between the actual blocks. This incidental thread between units makes it look more like Atwater Bronson lace than Huck. The more plain weave there is in a lace structure the more stable it is….meaning it doesn’t draw in as much or shrink and collapse as much.
The stablest lace is Bronson Lace because it has a full extra plain weave thread in both the warp and the weft. In the warp, it is the sixth thread on harness 2 and in the weft, it is the last weft pick in the 6 thread sequence. Huck pulls in more because it has no extra plain weave thread separating the units or the blocks. They butt up right against each other and that is why you get curves in warp and weft spots when you wash it.
I will be teaching my workshop on Lacey Places in Season 5 of the JST Online Guild, where you can learn about the differences between 4 shaft laces and have a chance to sample them all. Your sampling is good, keep it up, re-sett your lace the same way you would sett it for plain weave and if it is not balancing and turning out the way you want, remember …you are in charge and can sett it any way you think it would make sense. If it is packing down too much you need to increase your sett, if you can’t beat it easily enough open up your sett a bit. In my opinion, laces look best when warp and weft are balanced.