Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Avoiding Tangles...

Stars got tangled in her hair whenever she played in the sky.  
~ Laini Taylor

I've been telling myself that I am going to get back to weaving and my loom for a couple of years now.  Inspired by my recent burst of sewing, I decided to take the plunge this weekend and I started working on a rag rug.  

Okay, my timing may have also been influenced by the fact that my sewing machine needs a tune-up and so I'm going to be without it for a week or so...  ;)

The first step is to prepare the warp - or the length-wise threads in the loom.  There is a highly developed routine for doing this - all based around the goal of getting hundreds of pieces of yarn, all the same length, and keeping them from getting tangled up.  

It starts with this rectangular frame with a bunch of pegs around it.  You basically just find any pattern of wrapping your yarn around the pegs to measure out the length that you want.  Then you wrap the yarn around that pattern as many times as you need.  I needed 240 lengths.  

The key is that, at one end, you create a cross (or an "x") as you wrap your threads.  This cross is what keeps the threads in order - you can always tell which thread is next in the pile, because every other thread crosses to the left and every other thread crosses to the right...  

Once you've wrapped all of the threads that you need, you carefully tie off different sections to keep them separated and then V.E.R.Y. C.A.R.E.F.U.L.L.Y. remove the yarn from the warping board - making a chain, before carrying it over to the loom:  

Next up - getting these 240 lengths of yarn set up in the loom - this makes threading a serger look like child's play!  ;)


  1. That sounds like it would take SO much patience! But I'm sure your rug will be lovely in the end.

    I was planning on hopping over here this morning anyway--just wanted to make sure you'll be ok, with the government shutdown and all!

    1. Hi Becky! Thanks for thinking of me - according to the Commanding Officer at our command, we should be able to remain open for business for somewhere between "2 and 6 weeks" - that seems like a pretty big spread to me - hopefully Congress will get their act together in less than 2 weeks!