Projects, stories, memories and myths of knitting and crafts

Sunday, 28 March 2010

A Rigid Heddle Loom

The Master Craftsman Series on BBC has a lot to answer for. It got me interested in wanting to try to weave. I love the woven fabric that I have seen at Craft Fairs and have been quite happy to admire it and buy it should the desire take me. I have even watched ladies at their looms in these places but I have never before wanted to try to weave.

Seeing the whole process as the programme unfolded seemed to open a deep yearning inside me. I really wanted to try it! I have spent some of my free time since then, surfing the web, reading articles and watching You Tube videos all about different forms of weaving and itching to try.

I had decided that it was an itch that I was probably not going scratch. I mentioned it to Borneo and we looked at some websites together. After breakfast on Saturday, he suggested that visit the craft shop conveniently situated opposite the cafe. He asked them if they had looms. I did not for one moment even think that they would have, but they did! The kind lady there discussed the little that she knew about weaving with me and then, Borneo, being the kind of man that he is, bought me a rigid heddle loom. I am soooooooooo excited.

It came flat-packed. He built it for me the moment we stepped through the front door. I adore this man! Here it is - my huge 80cm rigid heddle loom waiting to be threaded!

That was me set for the weekend. I got busy straight away. I threaded 140 strands of different colours of pastel cotton for the warp. It took a very, very long time... I am sure my inexperience showed terribly!

That wonderful man came to help me too when I needed someone to hold the threads taut to wind them onto the loom. He is just outside the picture in the bottom righthand corner.

Then I got to secure all the threads to the front.

Now I was ready to attempt my first weaving. I must hasten to add here, I followed the tiny instruction booklet that came with the loom. I was in too much of a hurry to read the beautiful book that Borneo had bought for me at the same time as he bought the loom.

Here is the start of my fabric.

By the end of the evening, I had a piece woven, a first attempt with no instruction as such and I was quite pleased with myself. I could see that the edges needed work but it is not to bad for a play and it was such huge FUN. I finally found a use for some of those scraps of luxury yarn that are sitting idly in my stash.

I went to bed to read my new book and learned a few helpful techniques. I so wanted to try them as soon as I awoke this morning. Alas, we were due out to meet a friend for brunch and so I had to try to sit still and be an entertaining companion when all I wanted to do was go home and play some more!!!! Finally, we got home and Borneo, being the kind of lovely man he is, went and did all the chores so that I could play some more. I am so blessed!

Today, on my second attempt, I think I managed some decent fabric. At least, it looks like it to me! I am sure that I will look back in a few months and laugh at my vanity! This time the edges are actually flat and quite straight.

It is so meditative and great fun too.

I am sure that a teacher and expert would find plenty of mistakes. I love it and enjoyed every minute of it.

What do you think? Any comments or hints would be gratefully received.

1 comment:

  1. You are widening your craft skills..I'm thinking of all new possibilities-bath mats, luxury scarfs..nice!