Category Archives: Rigid Heddle Loom

So Long, Erica. Farewell, Peacock.

Believe it or not, every so often I wave goodbye to a loom. Recently, I sold my 25″ Erica rigid heddle loom to a new weaver who wanted to give it a try. The 12″ two harness Peacock, a teeny, vintage loom in need of new heddles and love, was also sent to a new home.

But even though I feel some relief and, yes, a bit smug, after sending these two out into the world (I’ve downsized! I’ve gained some space!), that hasn’t stopped me from welcoming a few more: one new, one old. (Hmmm… there goes that smugness.) I’ll blog about them at another time.

In the meantime, thanks for the memories, Erica. Glad to have known you, Peacock.

T-shirt bath mat, again

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18″ Bluster Bay Slim Rag Shuttle

I think I just found my new favorite shuttle for weaving on a rigid heddle loom. Stick shuttles can hook on warp threads, and from what I’ve heard, boat shuttles can fall between warp threads.

So far, I love using my new shuttles on the Glimakra Emilia. The slim design fits nicely in the shed, and I can pack more weft on than I imagined. In fact, I had the same amount as the stick shuttle I’d been using.

These little discoveries really make my day. I’m so happy I bought two!

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Two of Ten… Eleven?

image from www.flickr.com


So, if I do run low on beige, I'll have plenty of blue or white to finish. But why worry? This blanket I'm planning (the one where I weave nearly a dozen panels on my Ashford Sampleit and then sew them all together) may take a long, long time to finish. I decided a little pattern never hurt anyone, and so there will be a few panels with some Brooks Bouquet in them to fancy it up.

image from www.flickr.com

Finished: Useful Scarf

Here’s a useful, soft, and warm scarf woven out of a single ply wool called Manos Maxima. I wove it very quickly on my Ashford Sampleit over the weekend. The Sampleit has proven its worth as a portable loom as I brought it to work on Friday. Several of my coworkers knit or crochet, and now I can weave. The loom tucks into a medium-sized duffle, and I actually warped it and wove a few inches. Over the cold weekend, I finished the scarf while under a blanket on the couch. My other looms are getting jealous.

Finished: Useful Scarf

Finished: Brown and White Scarf

This ranks as the warmest scarf I’ve ever made. The brown and natural wool is from my amazing find at Goodwill. I’ve made three items (this scarf, the triloom blanket, and the triloom bias shawl). Believe it or not, I still have enough for one more project. The brown wool is denser and scratchier than the natural. I don’t mind, but I can’t imagine many people would seek it out.

This scarf was warped and woven in one day. I used a single warp float pickup pattern from Jane Patrick’s book. Because this is wool, I assumed it would shrink, but even in the hottest water, it only lost an inch in width. I suppose that it shrunk more with the open weave of the triloom.

The temperature is supposed to be below zero (F) this week, so maybe it’ll be woolen scarf weather, even if it’s a little scratchy.

Review of the Ashford Sampleit

I finished weaving the log cabin scarf in just one day. The little Ashford Sampleit is a great loom for me. It wasn’t that easy to put together because the instructions were pretty minimal. But once assembled I was able to quickly warp it using some cotton I had on hand, and I wove this cheerful blue and white scarf. The loom comes with a 7.5 dent heddle, so I’m looking through my stash for worsted to bulky weight yarns.

This loom is so tiny (18″ long by 11.5″ wide) that I do use it as a lap loom. I also bought an inexpensive duffle so I can take it along on trips. The shed is great for such a tiny loom: 1.5″. The up and down sheds both stay put. The weaving width is about 8″.

This loom has the new Ashford clicker pawl system, so you can can advance the warp easily. I dislike plastic pawls and ratchets, and these are plastic. Hopefully they’ll hold up to a lot of use, because I can see I’ll be using this loom quite a bit!

Review of the Ashford Sampleit

Why Do I Need Another Loom?

Why? Hmmm…. Can I come up with a reason?

Oh yeah! I don't have one to take to work for lunchtime weaving–doesn't everyone have lunchtime weaving?–until now.

It's on its way… a teeny tiny rigid heddle loom, brand new and from Ashford, called the SampleIt. With only an 8" weaving width, I think I can actually carry it in a small bag (like the one I bought years and years ago for knitting) and store it in a drawer. Not that I'll keep it at work all the time–I may need it for weaving while watching a movie (it fits on a lap!) or bringing along on weekend trips (too small to say nope, that's too big to tote along). Somehow, I avoided Cricket fever, even though I had come up with a list of reasons why a small rigid heddle loom was right for me. But with Christmas right around the corner, my husband bought this one for me as a gift. So, there's yet another reason–it's a gift! I have to accept it.

And so the year ends with the addition of four looms, some used, some new, some gifted: the Ashford 4 Shaft table loom (gifted), the Schacht Inkle loom (used), the modular triloom from Dewberry Ridge, and this teeny Ashford SampleIt Rigid Heddle loom. I added up all the $ spent, and was relieved to realize that all my looms (all of them, not just the 2012 looms) only add up to maybe 1/3 of a new floor loom. Whew! Still…

… it's a slippery slope!

Noro Scarf

image from www.flickr.com

That warp that had the snapping problem (individual strands of Noro sock yarn are delicate!) was transferred in a big clump from the Ashford table loom to my trusty Glimakra Emilia rigid heddle loom. The only thing that didn't go wrong was that I was smart enough to tie a knot at the top so I knew just where to put a warp stick. That's all that I did right. 🙂 But leave it to good ol' Emilia to take a mess and make it work out (knock on wood). Even though the warp is still a mess with tangled threads, I simply wound it on very gently and threaded each slot and hole with two strands using the 8 dent heddle. If one strand breaks, I'm still good to go. I'm using a pattern stick to create some warp floats. I think it shows off the pretty Noro colors a bit more than plain weave.

The weft is black crochet cotton, very thin and strong. I decided to use one of my slim poke shuttles, and it's working out great. Because it's small and nothing catches on it, it's perfect for a sticky warp. So far, I really love how this is turning out.  But I would not recommend using Noro sock yarn as a warp unless you know what you're getting into.