Weaving Loom Instructions

    CRAFTS CLASSES
    TO INSPIRE CREATIVITY
    by Jennifer Marlowe

    About the Author

    Jennifer Marlowe is a seasoned journalist with experience since 1994. As a former reporter and columnist, she has written for a variety of publications including "The Cleveland Plain Dealer," "Sew Simple Magazine," "Northern Ohio Live," "Ohio Game & Fish" and "The Country's Best Log Homes." Marlowe holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from the University of Akron.

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    Weaving on a loom looks complicated to most beginners. Weaving, however, is the simple process of entwining two sets of yarn to create patterns and designs. The novice needs only a few everyday items to begin learning this age-old craft.

    Terminology

    One of the hardest things to learn is the terminology used in the weaving process. The basics you will need to begin include:
    Warp --These threads are located in a vertical line in front of the weaver and are connected directly to the loom. "Warping the loom" is the process of attaching the thread to the loom, creating the warp.
    Weft -- This is the yarn the weaver pulls, horizontally, through the warp.
    Shed -- The shed is the opening made by raised and lowered warp threads. A "shed stick" is used to separate the threads on the loom.
    Pick or comb -- This is used to push the weft thread tight against the previous pass of thread.

    Loom Prep

    Gather together an old picture frame, sized approximately 12 inches by 16 inches. You will also need two skeins of yarn in different colors, a plastic pick comb, one chopstick and a ruler.
    To begin warping your loom, lay the frame on a table facing lengthwise in front of you. Tie one piece of yarn in a double knot on the frame's cross-piece nearest you. Take the yarn across the length of the frame and push it under the far cross-piece. Next, bring the yarn up and over this far cross-piece. The beginning end of the yarn should be headed back in your direction. Pull this end towards you, then, down and under the nearest cross-piece.
    The yarn is now back where you started. Repeat the entire process.
    The yarn should look like a series of figure eights wrapped around the frame. Pull the yarn tightly as you warp the frame with a little give.
    Create around 20 figure eights with the yarn. Tie the final end of the yarn in a double knot on the far cross-piece.

    How to Weave

    With the warping complete, it's time to weave. Use the different color of yarn for the weft. Cut the weft yarn to approximately 4 feet long.
    Look at your warped loom from the side, you should see a row of figure eights. Take your chopstick and push it through the opening above the center point of these figure eights. Pull the chopstick toward the bottom of the frame. The gap in front of the chopstick, between the top and bottom of the warp, is called the shed.
    Pull your weft yarn through the shed, from left to right, leaving a 4-inch tail sticking out on the left side. Push the ruler, again from left to right, through the warp, above the weft yarn you just pulled through.
    Laying the ruler flat, put it on top of the first warp yarn and under the second, alternating in this way across the warp. The ruler is your "Shed Stick."
    Put one hand on each side of the ruler and turn this shed stick sideways, making a gap in the warp. Pull your weft yarn through this gap, or shed, from right to left.
    Lay the ruler flat and pull it out of the warp. Push the weft yarn toward the front of the frame with the pick comb.
    Alternate the ruler through the warp again, above your last weave, and start the process over. Continue in this manner until you have filled the frame with your woven fabric.
    To finish the weaving, pull the chopstick out. Cut the warp from the front cross-piece and tie the bottom yarn to the top in a knot. Do the same with the far cross-piece. Hang your masterpiece on the wall. You are a weaver!