The way the warp and weft interlace defines the weave: plain, basket, twill, satin. Evolution of looms has been finding techniques, through either process or physical construction, to do these three things better - and faster, when it came to attaining economies of scale.
The allied step of raising and selecting the warp, to insert the weft and make the required pattern, has also undergone significant changes: from using a shed-rod carrying raised warp to another ingenious device, heddle, a looped wire with an eye in the centre through which a warp yarn was passed.
To create patterns and designs, required sections of warp were selected using shafts or harnesses that attached the heddles with foot treadles.
The"final" third step in the weaving process, beating, or battening, of weft was earlier done by a weaver's sword of wood (batten knives) which gave way to reed, a comblike tool, that, together with the heddle, combined warp spacing and beating of weft. The reed is suspended from the loom's framework and swings to press the weft against the woven fabric.