Setting up a Rigid Heddle Loom
Weaving has always fascinated me-===from the time I was about eight and was allowed to sit at my great-grandmother’s floor loom and weave rag strips into rag rugs. My grandmother at some point wanted her dining room back and so asked my mother if she wanted the loom–Mom said no—I cried–and Dad told me later that she regretted that decision. Looms can be broken down into bundles of sticks that don’t take up much room–but our little house was packed with six children and all their assorted belongings.
I had looked for used looms in various places, finally discovered a rigid heddle loom on ebay–promptly bought it and a book–but was totally confused as to how the warp it—and without a warp there can be no weaving. Several years passed and I discovered a yarn shop in Old Spring that taught heddle weaving—I was the first on the list to sign up and learned on one of their looms. I knew the basics of weaving from a college class in weaving but the warping is different—this uses a warping peg.
Now I had to order some equipment–warping pegs, sley hooks, a ball winder and a swift–all needed to change hanks of yarn into balls of yarn for use.
It has all been sitting on a chair in the dining room–and today I decided to give warping a try.
This is a Beka Loom—and after some fiddling with clamps to fasten it to the table–I don’t think I have that quite right yet, I now have my first warp on the loom. It is very back intensive work–and so the fun part of weaving will have to wait–but I’m pleased.
I worked on my dining room table and could have had a longer warp but i could not pull the table apart any more–it has six more leaves to go in it–but this was as much as I could make it stretch. And yes that is three boxes of dog treats in the background–one for balls and frisbees, one for treats and meds and the third one for biscuits.
Oh,my! You are creatively persistent! Dealing with the water leak, and following your longtime dream of weaving. This looks so difficult, but oh-so-satisfying when you see a panel you have woven. My friend Deb Kuster, our regional SAQA rep in Conway, AR, had two interesting pieces in our recent exhibit in Little Rock. Good luck on your progress!