Weaving Gal

For a long time I’ve been wanting to weave. A long time. As I write this, I’m very distracted because I’m listening to Crosby, Stills, Nash — Long Time Gone.

And it appears to be a looong, appears to be a looong, time, such a long, long time before the dawn…..

But it has been a long time that I’ve been meaning to get going with weaving. As much as I would love to have a large loom, a 4-shaft baby, I have neither the space, the money to spend on it, nor the time to learn to use this creature at this place in time. It is looming (heh) in my future, but for now I need to learn just what a warp is, which way a weft goes (weft to wight) and many, many other things that I can’t even conceive of yet.

When I went to purchase a small rigid heddle loom a month or so ago, every store I went to pretty much refused to sell me one. Oh, they said, “It’s for kids” “You’ll get tired of it immediately” “Why waste your money on that”. For goodness sakes, I just wanted to buy a small loom and it was getting embarrasing! Plus, I had very little backbone to stand up to these mavens of the weave to say, “Uh, yeah, I do want that”.

So, with my big sister prodding me on, I went to my local shop….Birkeland Bros. on Main in Vancouver, and Pearl couldn’t have been any nicer about this. She teaches the weaving classes, as well as knitting, and she agreed that this was a good choice to get myself started and teach myself the basics of weaving. Thank you Pearl for not humiliating me!! Purchased is an Ashford 24″ rigid heddle loom.

Missy and I brought home this box of pieces parts and we put it together. I’m very proud of our skills to do so. However, when the time came to do some heavy skrewing, we called on the men to do the job. Believe me, there were lots of jokes and innuendo flying.

Today, abandoned by Missy and her people to go skiing for a couple of days in Whistler, I bravely got out my instruction book and warped the loom. This wasn’t too bad. I probably should have chosen a darker warp thread for my first attempt as it was hard to see the ivory yarn against the off-white heddle for threading. But I got it done with no whining.

My first project will be whatever it will be. I’m not sure if it will be presentable at all, but if so, I will have a nice spring-coloured scarf. The warp is a sock yarn — Sisu — a superwash ivory. The weft yarn is also sock yarn — Koigu Painter’s Palette Premium Merino. I’m interested to see how far 1 skein will go — 160m — because I have high hopes for some other beautiful handdyed sock yarns.

So, I’m off to work on this some more. My edges are a little sketchy…but I think the sides are starting to even out a bit. It helps being ambidextrous so I can sling the shuttle back and forth pretty easily using both hands.

Need to get back to the weaving now……..

3 thoughts on “Weaving Gal

  1. Your scarf looks great. I think the selvedges are really good for a first project. Don’t let the weaving snobs get you down. You can do anything you want on a rigid heddle loom, it just depends on how much hand manipulation of stitches you want to do. I’m just getting started in weaving. I just built a rigid heddle loom, but I am still waiting for the heddle I ordered for it to arrive. In the meantime I’ve been weaving samples on a basic frame loom with pick up sticks. I really think working on a simple loom helps you to develop an understanding of weave structures. Keep up the good work.

  2. Wow, you built your own rigid heddle! That’s amazing. I just took this first project off and I’m anxious to get another project started!Thanks for your encouragement 🙂

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