The Threadtwiners are a guild of weavers’, dyers’, and other textile makers. They were founded following the brief but bloody Workmen Uprising to peacefully protect clothmakers of all stripes from unfair pricing practices of the merchant traders.
Goals. The Threadtwiners initial goal was to negotiate fair prices for cloth to sell to the elites who run the trading companies and merchant guilds. Prior to the guild’s existence, cloth merchants would pit weavers and dyers against one another to drive prices down.
Motto. “Family, work, prosperity.”
Beliefs. Threadtwiners are often brought up in the trade as the offspring of a member or by apprenticing to a member at a young age. Most of them believe the following:
There is virtue in good work.
Merchants are cheats who don’t produce anything of value for society.
Prosperity for one Threadtwiner is prosperity for all Threadtwiners.
Typical Quests. To gain renown with the Threadtwiners:
Smuggle cotton, silk, wool, or the like into the city without the trading companies’ knowledge. Sell the smuggled materials to a Threadtwiner below the dominant trading companies’ current prices.
Smuggle finished cloth out of the city to foreign markets without the cloth merchants’ knowledge. Purchase the materials from a Threadtwiner below the dominant cloth merchants’ current prices.
Steal finished cloth from the cloth merchants’ warehouses and return it to a Threadtwiner to be re-sold to the cloth merchants.
Produce a particularly fine piece of cloth. This could involve finding and making use of rare materials or spending time to intricately weave a beautiful pattern into the cloth.
The Threadtwiners symbol a spider, black and white on a maroon field—affectionately referred to as the Threadspinner. The Threadtwiners chose the spider because she is capable of creating beautiful patterns of silk webs and can be deadly when threatened. Loommasters often add embroidery behind the spider in the form of a spider’s web in silver thread.
Way of the Thread
To become a Threadtwiner, you must:
Apprentice with a Threadtwiner. Apprenticeships can last up to ten years for young weavers- and dyers-in-training, or for a few weeks for weavers and dyers trained in regions where the Threadtwiners are not active.
Produce a fine piece of cloth that demonstrates your skill at one or more of the following: weaving, dyeing, knitting, sewing, or embroidery.
Receive a formal invitation from a Loommaster to advance beyond your apprenticeship. Participate in the solemn initiation ceremony which involves swearing that you will treat all fellow Threadtwiners as you would your own brothers and sister.
Faction organizational structure
In any city, town, or region where the Threadtwiners are active, there exists a local Collective. Collectives are ordered based on the date of their founding. The First Collective dates back to the Workman Uprising. The Second Collective was started shortly thereafter in a rival trade city. The Third Collective was started among the towns and villages of the land from which the First Collective receives its wool. Though membership is small, Loommasters of the First Collective felt it important to ensure that rural weavers didn’t undercut their prices. Several other Collectives exist throughout the land.
Each Collective operates mostly independently from one another. At least once every five years, but sometimes more often, the Loommasters declare it time for a Spooling, or meeting of the Collectives. Every Collective sends a representative to discuss any changes in policy. Most Spoolings result in no change to the Threadtwiners rules and guidelines. If there are changes, they are typically small.
Faction membership hierarchy
The Threadtwiners have several tiers for members:
Apprentice. These are not full members, but either young craftfolk in training or trained craftfolk who have recently moved to an area where cloth production is controlled by the Threadtwiners.
Workman / Workwoman. These are the lowest-level of officially initiated Threadtwiners. Workman weavers, dyers, and the like often practice their art in the shop of another Threadtwiner.
Threadbrother / Threadsister. These ranks are reserved for members who have proven themselves loyal Threadtwiner members and who successfully run shops of their own. On a yearly basis, the local Collective’s Loommasters hold a hearing and vote on whether any Workmen have earned the rank of Threadbrother.
Loommaster / Loommistress. Each locality elects a handful of senior Threadbrothers to the rank of Loommaster. The First Collective has seven members at the rank of Loommaster, but other Collectives have different numbers. Once raised to Loommaster, one is a Loommaster for life or until removed for violating Threadtwiner rules. Whenever a vacancy occurs, the local Collective meets to elect a new Loommaster to fill the seat.
Boltmaster / Boltmistress.. The Loommasters select from among themselves one of their elder members to the position of Boltmaster. The Boltmaster has the final say in settling disputes, but only when breaking ties in deadlocked votes. When a Spooling is called for, the Boltmaster either attends or chooses which Loommaster will attend to represent the local Collective’s interests at the meeting.