I have designed some new tablet weaving cards that are made of durable plastic, because I didn’t like to use the matt board ones. I found that they tended to wear out rather quickly.
I designed these cards to be made of plastic so that they would be able to withstand the friction that is placed on the tablets during weaving. The edges are smooth and the cards turn easily.
The plastic tablets are not mass produced, but are made locally by skilled craftsmen.
The tablets come in a set of 4 colours: Red, Yellow, Blue and Green
One face of the card has a logo, the other side is blank. The multiple colours allow you to use different colours if you are turning groups of cards in different directions. The cards are not numbered, but you can easily write numbers or letters on them with a permanent marker to help you keep track while weaving. Be sure to let the ink dry before using the tablets.
The Paivatar Yarns cards are slightly smaller than the standard tablet weaving cards that are on the market (60 mm square) Because the cards are thin and slightly smaller in size than other tablet weaving cards, I find it easy to hold several in my hand – and I have fairly small hands. The thinner size is also better when working with fine yarns as it allows the warp yarns to be sett closer together, much as in weaving with a fine dent reed.
Paivatar Tablet Weaving Cards
The holes in the cards are also slightly smaller than the standard cards. This helps to keep the warp threads in alignment while weaving, as there is less play in the warp.
If you are interesting in purchasing a set please visit my Etsy Shop.
To warp my new Glimakra band loom, I use a method that is similar to the way that I warp my large floor looms, front-to-back. The total length of the band loom is about a meter, a comfortable distance to reach both the back and the front beams of the loom, if you sit on the side, facing the heddles. This will feel a bit awkward at first, if you are used to working from the front beam of a floor loom. But everything is accessible, the front beam, the heddles, the back beam and the pedals. I do find the loom a bit high so that my shoulders get sore while working on it. Sitting on a higher chair such as a dining room chair, or the weaving bench helps to alleviate this problem.
I wind the warp on a warping board. When making narrow striped bands, you do need to change colours frequently, but it isn’t difficult to tie the previous end to the warping peg, and tie on a new colour.
In this simple band, I am using 40 ends of different colours. The draft shows which shaft to thread the yarn through alternating between the 2 shafts, Shaft 1 (Front heddle) Shaft 2 (Back heddle)
I have used 8/2 cotton for this band, but you can use any weight of yarn that you wish.
Turquoise Blue 20 Ends
Yellow 8 Ends
Red 8 Ends
Purple 4 Ends
Total 40 Ends
Warp Length: 3.5 Meters (including loom waste)
After winding the warp onto the warping board, I insert the lease sticks into the cross, and remove the warp from the warping board.
I use masking tape, to temporarily attach the warp onto the front beam of the band loom.
While sitting on the side of the loom, directly in front of the heddles, I move all of the heddles close to the front. Again, I use a small piece of masking tape on the last heddle, to prevent them from falling off the pegs while I am warping. I start to thread the heddles, working from the back of the loom to the front.
I select the warp ends from the lease sticks and thread each end through the next heddle, alternating between the Front and Back heddles according to the draft. The lease sticks keep the warp in threading order as I warp.
I find it easier to use my fingers to thread the texsolv heddles, rather than using a threading hook.
When all of the warp ends have been threaded, I tie them to the back beam.
I use 2 texsolv heddles to attach the rods to the back beam, rather than using the texsolv cord that was provided with the loom. I find the texsolv cord to be a bit too heavy.
I now remove the lease sticks – they aren’t really needed anymore as the warp threads are all in perfect order. I find it easier to wind on a smooth warp without the sticks.
Again, sitting at the side of the loom, directly in front of the heddles, I hold the warp threads with my left hand, and slowly wind the warp onto the back beam, winding the warp with my right hand. Occasionally I have to stop, and gently comb out any loose ends, and continue winding.
As I am winding the warp onto the back beam, I insert one of the warp sticks with each revolution. This helps to keep the warp tensioning even as you are winding on.
Once the warp has all been wound onto the back beam, I adjust the warp tension and tie the ends to the front beam.
As there is no reed on a band loom to help keep an even sett, weaving on a band loom is a bit more free form than weaving on a conventional table or floor loom. I find that it always takes a few inches of weaving, to determine the correct weaving tension in order to get straight edges.
The latest loom to enter my loom collection is a 2 shaft band loom made by Glimakra. I like to weave narrow bands using a small, hand held rigid hedddle, but I am hopeful that a band loom will make the band weaving process more efficient.
The Glimakra band loom arrived (Ikea style) in a box, as an assortment of wooden sticks and a one page diagram of how to put the bits together.
After a bit of pondering, I sorted the wooden bits into sections.
Once I had all the pieces sorted, it was fairly easy to assemble the loom following the diagram provided.
I slid the 2 shaft sections into the 2 center pieces and attached them with the 2 screws provided.
Then I attached the front and back pieces to the side panels of the loom.
The foot pedals are attached to the 2 shafts with the texsolv that has been provided, and tied to the side panels with the leather strips.
My Glimakra Band Loom is ready to go!
My First Band Loom Warp
I wanted to weave some fine tape for sewing hanging loops for tea towels that I have been weaving.
Grene rugs and blankets were a traditional style of blanket woven by the Saami on warp weighted looms. They were made of hand spun wool. The top edge of the blanket had a braid that was woven using a Saami weaving reed. The weft threads of the braid were the ends of the lengths of warp threads. This braided edge helped to provide the correct sett to the weaving and created a firm and stable border which was then tied to the top beam of the warp weighted loom.
I recently worked on a commission to weave a Grene veving style Saami blanket. Since I don’t own a warp-weighted loom I had to figure out how to weave such an edge onto the blanket. Some years ago when I was visiting a textile museum in Finland, I saw a demonstration of Karelian tablet weaving. Textile fragments from Viking age gravesites have been found that feature card woven edges on aprons, and clothing edges. I thought that this method of weaving the braid after the yardage has been woven would work. Rather than using tablet weaving I wove the braid with my Beaivi weaving reed. Card Woven Braid Edging Blue Skirts and Golden Belts
Grene Veving, Rátno goddin or branch weaving has been part of the Saami culture since 600 AD. The warp-weighted weaving loom was easily constructed and portable as it was comprised of a few logs or branches that could be easily set up and moved. Grene blankets and rugs were woven with linen and wool yarns. The wool was hand spun and patterns were generally woven weft faced in a twill fashion. The warp yarns were tighly spun as singles yarn. The weft was more loosely spun singles yarn, spun in the opposite direction. To create a dense weave that would withstand the weather, the weft was firmly beaten so the warp didn’t show, except at the fringed bottom of the blanket. The wools were mainly of natural white and grey colours and decorative striped patterns were woven into the design. Because dyes were a scarce resource, these dyed yarns were mainly used in the reed woven borders that trimmed the rugs.
Grene blankets and rugs had many uses such as bed blankets, sled coverings, and tent covers. Because they were woven of wool, the fabric was was both insulating and water resistant. Grena fabric became valuable tender and the local Saami could not afford to make Grene fabric soley for their own use. The blankets were woven for payment of taxes and also sold mainly to Norwegians and others in order to purchase other supplies and goods that were needed.
Greneveving is still being woven today and can be purchased from the online store at Manndalen Husflid.
My version of a Grene style blanket. I wove this on my +100 year old Snickeri loom. The warp was mill spun wool. For the weft I used hand spun natural white and grey Blue Faced Leicester wools and wove this blanket in twill weave.
I threaded my Beaivi double hole weaving reed with dyed yarns in traditional Saami colours (Red, Yellow, Green, Blue, Black) As I was going to weave only a simple ground weave and not add a supplementary warp pattern, I used only the bottom set of holes and the slots. I left the top row of holes unthreaded. You can use a standard single hole weaving reed for this type of braid.
I tied the warp ends to the top beam of my double beam loom and wound the warp around the beam. You can of course tie the warp ends to just about anything – a clamp on the edge of a table, or any post that is of the correct height.
When I cut the blanket warp off the loom, I left about 5 inches of unwoven warp at the end of the blanket. This may vary depending on how wide you want the woven braid to be. I moved a table close to the warp and laid the blanket onto the table.
Using the same wool yarn as I used for the blanket, I first wove a few inches of plain weave for the braid, until I got the tension correct for the width of braid.
Using a large paper clip, I fastened the end of the woven braid onto a cutting mat or art board to help hold it securely while I weave. I placed the woven blanket close to the edge of the braid and fastened it in place with a few large paperclips clipped to the cutting mat.
I opened the next shed of the braid. Using the cut end of the warp threads I picked up the first 3 warp ends from the blanket.
(You will need to experiment to see what is the correct number of warp threads to pick up to fit the sett of your woven piece. For this blanket I picked up 3 warp threads)
I passed these through the open shed to the left, to weave these through braid warp.
I changed sheds and pulled snugly on the 3 warp threads to pull the braid close to the edge of the blanket warp.
Holding the warp edges firmly to the edge of the blanket, I then wrapped and passed 2 of these warp threads back through the open warp (to the Right).
(I left the third warp thread on the left side of the braid so that I can sew this in later to help further secure the edge of the braid and to fix any possible skips etc. Thought you can weave this through at the same time if you wish)
I then picked up 3 new warp threads from the blanket edge and passed these through the same open shed (to the Left)
Then I changed sheds, tightened the warp ends and beat the weft into place with my fingers.
Continue weaving the rest of the braid to the blanket repeating the steps above.
Pickup up 3 warp ends
(To the Left) Weave these through the open shed.
Change shed and pull the warp ends to adjust the tension.
Drop one of the warp ends and weave the 2 remaining warp ends through the open shed. (to the Right)
Pick up 3 new warp ends from the blanket and weave these through the same open shed (to the Left)
Change shed and adjust tension.
Weave to the end of the blanket, and then using the same type of yarn as the blanket warp, weave another 2 of inches of braid.
Cut the warp ends and sew the braid end to finish.
Trim off the woven edges of the warp close to the edge of the braid. Using a sewing needle weave the remaining warp ends (from the outside Left edge of the blanket back through the woven braid to further secure the braid to the blanket.
How to Weave A Grene Saami Band onto a Woven Blanket Video
Simple finger-woven bands, soda-straw loom bands,hungarian-loom bands,twining-loom bands,rigid-heddle bands,band weaving on the american inkle loom,card-woven bands andweaving variations for special effects.
I have been doing a study on Sami band weaving and I noticed that the ends of the heddle woven bands are often finished with a simple braid technique of finger weaving or open braiding the ends. These types of braids are also used for belts, ties and bracelets and are traditional in Finland and other Nordic countries.
I thought that using bobbin lace bobbins for holding the warp threads would be a suitable way to weave this type of braid.
To weave a 2 yard length of braid I started with 3 yard length of warp yarn in 8 strands.
I attached the ends to the top of an art board with a jumbo paper clip to hold the braid in place while I weave.
I wound each yarn length around the neck of a bobbin.
This is a very simple twill type of weave that makes a flat braid, much like a shoe lace. I will be using this braid for lacing a pair of hand felted wool slippers.
Working from the Left to the right
Take the first warp yarn (your working yarn) on the left and weave it Over the next 2 warp threads
Then weave the working yarn Under the next 2 warp yarns
Then weave the working yarn Over the next warp yarn
Then weave the working yarn under the last 2 warp yarns.
Tighten the tension
Repeat the above sequence again starting from the left, weaving to the right.
The Weaver’s Inkle Pattern Directory: 400 Warp-Faced Weaves
An overview of inkle weaving’s history and traditions.
*Instructions for loom set-up and simple techniques.
*An astonishing 400 woven patterns—some making their first debut.
*Illustrated samples and charts.
*Drafts provided throughout the entire guide.
From high-tech to low-tech weaving –
My latest handweaving obsession is studying more about the weaving of narrow bands, belts and braids done by my ancestors. After finding a unique double slot weaving reed during a trip to Sweden, I did some more research on these small and portable weaving reeds used by the Saami people of northern Scandinavia.
I had seen some photos of weaving reeds in museum collections that had 2 holes instead of one on a small rigid heddle. The additional hole is for the pattern warp thread and makes it easier to weave pickup patterns. The pattern warp thread is picked up to float above the ground weave or pushed down according to the pattern.
During my research I found a Sami loom maker Stoorstalka who makes traditional Sami style weaving reeds using modern materials. I contacted them about these looms and they very kindly designed a weaving reed to my specification.
I am delighted with the result and look forward to spending many delightful hours weaving these colorful and unique style of belts.
Beaivi (or Päivi in Finnish) is the Sami name for the Sun or Sun deity. In Sami myth, she travels with her daughter Beaivi-nieida through the sky in an enclosure covered by reindeer bones, bringing green plants back to the winter earth for the reindeer to eat. She was also called upon to restore the mental health of those who went insane because of the continual darkness of the long winter.
Weaving with a Sami Weaving Reed
This is my first attempt at weaving with this loom. I decided to keep the pattern very simple at this stage, and to concentrate on getting my tension right. I found this weaving reed very easy to use. It is lightweight, easy to thread and very pretty to look at. The threads do not snag, as they did on the earlier wooden version that I had.
The warp ends are tied similarly to when using weaving cards or tablets. One end of the warp is tied to a post – I tie the warp ends to the warping board that is attached to the back of the loom. The other end can be tied to a belt around your waist as in backstrap weaving. I found that clipping the warp threads to an art board that sits on my lap as I weave, an easier method to use, as my back doesn’t hurt while I am weaving, and it provides a surface to rest the weaving pattern and the weaving reed on as I work
. Weaving with a Double Slot weaving reed.
How to Weave on a Double Hole Rigid Heddle Loom
When you push the heddle down, the pattern threads (Black) move into the middle of the heddle – the top warp threads of the ground warp are raised and the bottom warp threads are lowered.
Hold the weaving reed in this lower position and put your hand into the raised shed, separate the threads and run your hand down to open the shed and beat down the previous row.
The pattern threads (Black) are now in the center, in between the 2 ground warp threads.
Pick up the pattern threads (Black) that are used in this row of the pattern and push down the other (Black) pattern threads. Leave all the other (red) top ground threads in your hand – as this weaves the tabby ground warp.
Pass your weaving shuttle through this row.
Lift up the weaving reed to change the shed.
Put your hand into this shed and beat down the previous row and adjust the tension.
The pattern threads (Black) will now be above both of the ground warp threads.
While holding onto the raised ground warp and pattern warp threads, pick up the (Black) pattern threads according to the pattern draft, and allow the other (Black) pattern threads to drop – keeping all of the raised ground warp threads (Red) up, as this again weaves the tabby ground warp.
Pass the weaving shuttle through this row.
The Black pattern threads that you picked up will float above the warp. The Black pattern threads that you dropped will float on the underside of the warp, creating a mirror effect on the reverse of the cloth.
Change sheds by dropping or pushing down the weaving reed.
Again put your hand into the formed shed and beat down the previous row and adjust the tension.
Adding Beads to Weaving
I thought I would experiment with adding a few beads to this woven band. I used seed beads and strung them onto a length of yarn, similar to the yarn I was using for the weft. I threaded this yarn through on a weft row and positioned the seed bead in between the warp threads and beat the weft into place, and wove the next weft row with the regular weft yarn I had been using.
The loops of weft yarn will be sewn in and trimmed off during finishing.
Double Hole Rigid Heddle Loom
If you are looking for something new to add to your loom collection, why not add one of these from Stoorstalka?
I have woven on large multishaft looms for many years, but have not had the chance to study the smaller versions of our weaving craft in much detail until now. Currently my big loom is tied up with another rya rug that will take several weeks to complete. I thought that I would explore the world of smaller, more portable weaving structures.
The weaving of narrow belts or braids has been popular in many countries for centuries. Different parts of Finland and Scandinavia were known for using different weave structures, patterns and colours. The belts were twined or were woven using cards (lautanauha) or a narrow reed (pirtanauha).
Double Hole Rigid Heddle Weaving
Another popular belt weaving technique was to use a small weaving reed. The reeds were similar to those we now use on a rigid heddle loom. Some also had an extra hole or slot for the pattern threads.
The reeds were often made by a groom for a gift for his bride. The reeds were carved of reindeer bone or wood.
The woven belts had many uses. They were worn as decoration around the waist, around socks to hold them up, as hair ties, or as decoration around the neck and sleeves of garments.
In Finland it was often customary for the bride to weave several belts and to wear them as part of her wedding costume. After the wedding, she would give these belts as gifts to members of the wedding party, or to other family members.
As I work my way through this study of traditional band weaving, I will post patterns and the finished products of what I have been weaving. I hope that you will find this useful and that it may also lead you on to new discoveries.
Card or Tablet Weaving
FI – Lautanauha
There are many wonderful resources and instructions on how to do tablet weaving available, so I won’t go into details here.
The pattern shown is read from the top to the bottom, and left to right, with 1 line representing the threading for each card. The S or Z marking denotes whether the yarn is threaded from the left (S) or from the right (Z). Remember to thread all the yarns on the same card from the same direction, or you won’t be able to turn the card.
The pattern is woven by turning all of the cards 1/4 turn clockwise (away from you). Throw the weft thread through the shed, Turn the card another quarter turn clockwise. Repeat until you have made 4 turns of the cards.
Continue to weave the pattern repeats.
As you continue to weave and turn the cards in the same direction, eventually the warp yarns at the back of the cards will get twisted and you won’t be able to weave any further. At this point, you will need to change the direction of the turning of the cards. i.e. Turn the cards anti-clockwise (towards) from you.
You can also vary the pattern by alternating the card turns clockwise/anticlockwise more often, creating a mirror image of the design.
Card Weaving Pattern No. 73
My first card weaving project was woven using Finnish seine twine cotton yarn. I used a 3 yard warp length, and wove the weft using the same weight of yarn.
If you would like to weave a thicker and wider belt, then you can use a heavier weight of yarn, in wool, cotton or whatever yarns you may have on hand.
Warp: Cotton Seine Twine – 3 yards
6 ply Kalalanka, 30 Tex x6
No. Ends: 32
Weft: Cotton Seine Twine – Red
Look for some of my handwoven products in my Etsy shop.