Sunday, May 25, 2014

My New Loom

I have been wanting a loom for a long time.  Yes I have that big rectangular loom, but I have wanted a table loom to play around with.  I have looked at them for several years and finally decided in honor of my Birthday, (which is in just a little over a month) I would treat myself to a loom.  I read, and read, and read about them.  I watched videos and looked at stores all over the web.  I priced them and priced them again.  I finally decided that the Ashford Knitter's Loom was the one for me.  It was reasonably priced as far as looms are concerned, it is portable and folds up when not in use if you want it to.  It came in several different sizes and I decided I wanted something to make shawls, table runners, place mats and scarves so the 20" loom would be perfect.  I found the perfect loom on eBay from a store way over in Washington state, it was the most reasonably priced and even allowed me to purchase another heddle for the loom for finer yarns at a price under what the loom was selling for in yarn stores.  Shipping was free!  It arrived in a timely manner at my house this past week.  I was so excited.  I put it aside for a few days as my work and Little Buddy's schedule was crazy this week. Finally on Thursday I put it together, on Friday I warped it, and by yesterday I had my first scarf.

Want to peek with me?


Here it is clamped to my kitchen table ready to warp.
 

The warping peg is positioned 75" from the back of the loom, which can be done easily with my table extension.


After winding the warp back and forth, I enlisted the help of my teenager to hold the yarn taunt while I wound it onto the back roller.


I was able to thread every other piece of yarn through the top slot and then tie the yarn to the front roller.



Now it was time to weave.  Of course this being my first project it is all wonky with the edges not very nice and straight.  I did not have my tension right, and frankly could not figure out where the heddle went when in the down position.  I know it seems like I am speaking a foreign language. 


 Regardless of my issues, I was weaving, even if in my own way.  And once I got going it went really fast.  So fast I was done in no time at all.  I wasted a lot of yarn, but that is just fine.  This yarn was from the dregs of my yarn stash in my closet, it had not even made it to my craft room, and frankly I had forgotten all about it entirely.  I thought the fancy yarn for the weaving would be perfect as it is thick to thin with fuzz and ribbon, I thought it might be more forgiving that a straighter more flat yarn.


Here it is straight off the loom.  I think it looks pretty good for my first attempt. I gave it a good soak and here it is all finished and dried.  Things dry very quickly outside in the Florida heat.


It looks a bit rustic with the edges not straight, I'll blame that on the yarn and not my beginning weaving skills!

I was so excited about the prospect of weaving I made a trip to my favorite yarn store Knit n' Knibble in Tampa yesterday, all by myself!  It was a glorious two and a half hours.  I caught up with a friend on the way there on the phone, I walked around unhindered by a stroller or little hands grabbing things.  And on the way home I finished my conversation with my friend via the phone.  I bought some yarn with the intention of using it with my loom, and a book about weaving to help me understand the whole process a bit better. Of course you know I have an abundance of yarn at home, but this is part of my birthday present to myself so it was necessary, if you know what I mean.  And I am no longer on a yarn diet, so I don't even have to make an excuse. And frankly I am going to be turning 50, that is reason to celebrate!

I plan on making another scarf this weekend with my brand new yarn, and then possible a shawl.

  Hope you are having a fun weekend and if you are in the US a nice long weekend.

62 comments:

brsmaryland said...

I can totally understand the allure of weaving. Your first scarf looks great! I love the color and all the texture. Enjoy exploring a new craft and early birthday wishes to you!!

Vera said...

Happy Birthday early! You scarf looks great - love the color and texture of it. I think my friend has the same loom (plus a couple she can hold in her lap, one huge one that is on the floor and another large one propped against the wall of her living room). She says she finds weaving to be very meditative. Enjoy!!

Eileen Bunn said...

I am so excited for you! I got a small loom a couple of years ago and love it. I'm not very good, but it's fun and a change from knitting. I think you did a great job on your scarf. Those looms are supposed to be stash busters but that doesn't seem to work too well for me. Have fun!
Eileen

Stitchy Mc Floss said...

Me..me..me..me....(clearing of throat)...Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday day to you (although early) Happy Birthday to you! :)

Oh what a perfect birthday gift! I so love your scarf, it's beautiful and it is that lovely shade of blue that reminds me so much of the ocean in Florida.

It's always fun to learn something new and you are doing such an awesome job! Yay!

Looking forward to seeing more projects.

Hugs to you sweet friend.

busybusybeejay said...

That is amazing.I love the colour and it looks so professional.I am very impressed.Weaving is something I have always fancied having a go at.Is it very difficult?

Gracie Saylor said...

WOW!!! You are a good communicator, Mere. You really are. You typed and told me how you did it. You showed me great photos of how you did it. BUT HOW DID YOU MAKE THAT BEAUTIFUL SCARF IN THAT FABULOUS COLOR SO QUICKLY??? I so admire your gifted creativity! Thanks for posting and WOWing me once more :) Blessings to you and yours xx

moonstruckcreations said...

A very well deserved early birthday treat! I love your scarf.

Hope you get more time real soon to do more weaving!

Helenxx

stitchymcflossfromblogger said...

Love your scarf.

kristieinbc said...

What a great table loom! I have to say, I'm somewhat proud of myself for having guessed what you bought for yourself. :-)

The scarf is very nice! It will be fun to see what other woven projects get featured on your blog in the next few months.

mamasmercantile said...

Hope you have a wonderful birthday. I love your present to yourself, it is certainly something I would love to have a go at. I thought the scarf looked really professional, well done. It is a bank holiday over her in the UK as well.

Clare said...

Wow that's amazing a very good pre birthday gift, have lots of fun
Clare xx

CJ said...

How exciting, I can see why you want to try weaving, it's a fantastic idea. I love the scarf, hard to believe it's your first attempt. I shall look forward to seeing what you do next. I know how exciting it is when you start something new. It's a long weekend here too, yay. I hope you guys have a nice time. CJ xx

Vikki Hooks said...

What an awesome gift..Looks like something I would want to try. I think your first project turned out great.

Acorn to Oak said...

Congratulations on your new loom! How exciting! Your first project looks great! I love the color and I love working with textured yarn like that. It's so fun to see how it works up. Enjoy your new loom! :-D

Carla from The River said...

Wow, it is so pretty and fun. I am so excited for you.
What a fun gift for your birthday.
Happy Birthday!
Have a fun weekend. I can not wait to see more. :-)

Linda Powell said...

What a great post, thanks for sharing your first experience with your new loom. I think you will have much fun experimenting and creating. I am also 50 this year at the end of July, I am also treating myself to an early birthday gift, I shall reveal soon :-)

Claire said...

Well done Meredith, your scarf is gorgeous.
What a stunning colour, so rich and I love the lighter flecks in it........
Rustic, one of my favourite words, it adds character to our work and makes it unique.......
Sounds like you're smitten and good on you for treating yourself......you most definitely deserve it and more.
Pre 50th birthday wishes coming your way......

Claire Xx

Teresa Kasner said...

Meredith.. I just loved reading this.. I'm proud of you for taking time for yourself and finding this wonderful loom and for carving out time for weaving and yarn shopping. You've had a very busy and stressful time and I'm glad you're doing something so fulfilling and pleasurable! And don't worry about perfect edges.. hand made things are all the more wonderful because they are not machine made perfect.

*H*A*P*P*Y* * *B*I*R*T*H*D*A*Y*!*!*!* ahead of time!

((hugs)), Teresa :-)

kathy b said...

Meredith,
What a lovely first weave! WOW. I love the color so very much.
Having a great Holiday weekend. Planning to knit all evening long on the porch…no TV, just knitting and nature

Pammy Sue said...

How interesting! Something new is always fun and good for the brain. I know absolutely nothing about looms and looming or weaving or whatever you call it. I'm impressed with your first scarf! Well done. Glad you got some more of that "me time."

Judy S. said...

Looks to me like you'er a natural weaver! Nice work. And an early Happy Birthday, too!

RedSetter said...

Meredith this is so impressive for a first attempt. and I can see you are going to get a lot out of your newest craft 'toy'. Of course you must buy new yarn as the stuff in your stash is maybe not perfect enough for your newest tool so it needs new types to try it out with, anyone knows this...lol!

Happy, happy birthday. What a celebration 50yo and giving a wonderful life to Little Buddy. You are as much a blessing as blessed yourself.

Jennifer said...

Good for you, Meredith. It's a lovely birthday treat to yourself. I haven't done much weaving but my mother-in-law does a lot, and I hope to try to learn someday.

Maureen said...

What a great birthday present to yourself! I have a 15" Cricket loom that I still need to put together, but one of my crafting resolutions this year is to weave something!

Ana BC said...

I have always been intrigued by looms, and I love the size of your new one. It looks very manageable. You already are a pro. Your scarf is gorgeous!

gaia said...

Impressive! Having a job, family including a toddler, and you can crochet, knit and now weave! Inspiring... I hope you have a wonderful birthday and the scarf is simply gorgeous...Gaia.

Ольга said...

Поздравляю с покупкой! Ткачество - это прекрасное занятие и хобби!

Scarf is very beautiful!

kathyinozarks said...

beautiful! weaving is very addictive-enjoy!!

Mrs. C said...

Happy Birthday! I have not used a loom in many, many years! I learned to weave on big floor looms in college(many,many moons ago...) and fell in love with the relaxing motion of weaving! Ooohhh.... wouldn't woven placemats with a little crocheted edge be pretty!?! So many fun, yarny things you can do with your new toy! Enjoy it! :)

Amy at love made my home said...

You definitely deserve a present to yourself and I am glad that you went off for a few hours and treated yourself, sounds as though you enjoyed it. I hope that you have lots of fun weaving all sorts of things for yourself. xx

Dee said...

Sounds like you had fun with your new loom AND with some shopping time. I think the scarf is gorgeous and certainly doesn't look like a "first attempt" as you say.

The yarn is perfect for weaving. I like the slubs and bumps.

Karen said...

The scarf turned out beautifully! I loved reading all about the loom. I had no idea you could get one that attaches to a table. That's so cool.

Happy birthday (early)! Welcome to this side of 50 -- you will love it!!

Tree Hugger - Suzan said...

WOW!! That is a lovely scarf!! So what is the rod attached to the end of the table for? Very nice color - but I love blue!! You are soooo talented!!

Sarah Sweethearts said...

How absolutely beautiful, just love it! The loom is a nice treat for yourself too. :) Excited to see the new projects you come up with, have a great day!

Kris said...

How cool!!!!!!!!
xo Kris

Willow said...

I saw your comment on Karen's blog and decided I had to pop over because your name included 'knit' as I am a knitter too.

Love the scarf! I am a beginning weaver. I am using a larger loom and I think that was a mistake. A small table loom would have been a better choice, I think.

Olga said...

Oh wow, that's awesome. Your first project turned out great!

Joyful said...

Wow! I'm totally impressed that you've already made a scarf and it turned out beautifully. Congratulations on your new loom and on turning 50 soon! May you have a blessed birthday even though I know you like things low key too. Hugs. xx

Gillian said...

This is so cool. I would be terrified of it if it was sat on my kitchen table, but I'm really impressed with what you can achieve! And you've got an excuse to buy more yarn now too... xx

Gillian said...

This is so cool. I would be terrified of it if it was sat on my kitchen table, but I'm really impressed with what you can achieve! And you've got an excuse to buy more yarn now too... xx

mynestofyarnandbuttons said...

WOW, Meredith is all I can say! AND BEAUTIFUL!
xoRobin

Romana Toson said...

Very Nice!! It's cool to have a new toy hey?

Betsy said...

Meredith!! HaPpY BiRtHdAy to you! I echo each and every comment made here.
You have the wonderful gift of writing and the perfect pictures to go with it. I feel like I am right there with you, looking over your shoulder and learning to weave.
Your scarf is absolutely perfect. The edges are just fine. I'm so happy for you that you've found a new way to express yourself through yarn. Beautiful!
Blessings,
Betsy

Rose Red said...

Aha! A loom! I thought that's what you might have been referring to in your other post! It all does sound like a foreign language to me, I'm afraid! I have sometimes thought about getting a loom, but I have resisted...so far. Your posts might push me over the edge into the weaving abyss!

Hannapat said...

Oh how very exciting, A LOOM!!!! Wow now that serious is one amazing birthday pressie and how clever are you to achieve this gorgeous scarf on your very first go, I am so impressed my dear! I am so happy that you managed to find one and a lovely one too, they look great just as an ornament. I am also equally happy that you got to spend some time on your own and with a friend, we all need to recharge our batteries every now and then. Enjoy your new toy and have fun. Sending you much love xoxo

Lynne said...

I can see a lot of pretty creations coming off that new loom. Your first scarf is quite pretty, you must be a natural at this.
Have fun with your new toy!

Jen Vandervoort said...

Meredith, that's gorgeous, and I am not just being polite. I see a new Etsy shop item.

Love it.

Jen

yarn and pencil said...

How exciting to have a birthday loom!
For a first attempt I think the sides are nigh on perfect :-)
Tracey xxx

elns said...

Wow! Look at that scarf! I love the texture and color. Congratulations on your birthday loom. I expect many more amazing things to come. Your crafts are always lovely.

My Garden Diaries said...

This is just fantastic! You know...long ago when I was in college I took a weaving class and I absolutely loved it! Your loom is outstanding! I can not wait to see what else you make because your first piece there is just awesome! A wonderful week to you friend! Nicole xoxo

Babajeza said...

This shawl is beautiful. :-) I'd like to have a loom, too. Actually I have one like yours but I dream big. I would love to it on the bench of a gigantic loom and pull .... :-)

Heldasland said...

You definitely deserve time to yourself. I love your first scarf. The texture is perfect

linda said...

Congratulations on the purchase of your new loom and of course the necessary accessories Meredith, I think your scarf is lovely and such a lovely colour too. I'm looking forward to seeing all the lovely creations you produce, have fun! :)

Deb said...

this will be a very well loved loom! your first project has turned out beautifully (love the colour wool you chose for your scarf).
Yes, 50 is reason to celebrate ♥ xo

Toni said...

Oh how fun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love the scarf--I think it looks fantastic--first project or not. :)

Ladybird Diaries said...

Oh this is great...weaving looks like lots of fun. I love how your scarf turned out.
Marianne x

gillyflower said...

Oh how exciting!This looks amazing! I love the scarf you've made, and it must feel so satisfying to know you've woven it yourself. You would not know that's a first attempt, it looks pretty darn good!
Enjoy!
Gill xx

Annie @ knitsofacto said...

Go you! I did a heddle weaving course a few months back but so far have only managed to acquire a pin loom so I am of course green with envy reading this. Have fun :)

Lori Lynn said...

I think it's beautiful! I've recently developed the urge to spin. I'm starting to research basic spinning classes with a spindle with the dream of a wheel one day. So understand your desire for a loom. You go girl!

Tammy@T's Daily Treasures said...

Wow Meredith! You did a great job. And I absolutely love that royal blue color. I'm pretty sure weaving shouldn't be perfect. That's the beauty of it. The fact that it's done by hand. I can't believe you finished it so quickly. My woven rug remains undone as it just took so long. I gave up. And now just use the unfinished rug and loom as a display piece in my living room. :) Happy near birthday to you! You're awesome! Tammy

Eileen Chrisjohn said...

Way to go Meredith! I too would love to learn weaving. Your scarf is gorgeous and how fun to go to the LYS by yourself! Take care my friend and early Birthday Wishes! The 50's are wonderful so far! :)

Joy said...

Goodness gracious, you really are so clever Meredith, and double-quick too. This is absolutely wonderful, a beautiful scarf in such a rich colour!
I'm happy that you managed, and enjoyed, some free time for yourself too - it's really necessary when there are lots of calls on your time.
Warm hugs, Joy xo