Sunday, August 25, 2013

arrival of the rigid heddle loom ...


Here's me putting it together!  To be fair, there wasn't much effort involved since I bought it pre-assembled from the Weaving Goddess Bella of Bellatextiles ;)


You may be reading this thinking 'what the hell does she need ANOTHER loom for??'.  Well, when I bought the 8 shaft table loom, I went straight in feet first (as usual) and started weaving my infinity scarves.  I'm so grateful that so many people have liked and bought them, with more orders on the way! 

The only drawback of this is that I haven't had time to practice and stretch my skills, since the table loom is always warped up for scarves!  I've always wanted to try doing transparency inlay weaving (see HERE), but with bats and skulls instead of leaves ;)  These will be more 'art' scarves rather than craft ... and I found that I could do this on a very basic rigid heddle loom.

Most people start off their weaving adventures on a rigid heddle loom, but I've never tried one before!  So after doing a bit of research, I contacted Bella (who has sold me all of my looms!), and asked if she could order me a 24" rigid heddle with stand.  When I arrived, she asked if I wanted to take her 16" demo model off her hands for a very reduced price, since she is clearing out her excess stock.  PERFECT!!  I didn't really need a 24" weaving width, so I went with the smaller model. 

The other advantage of the rigid heddle is that there are a lot of beginner classes and information online - I signed up straight away for a Craftsy class, which is brilliant!

Had a bit of trouble warping up the loom ... nothing to do with the loom itself, but a certain kitty who refused to leave the wool alone!  They're all normally so well behaved in my studio - but I think the lure of the wool on the floor was just too much :P


And here it is right now - I'm making a kitty blanket (complete with fringes for them to chew on!).  The tension is not perfect, but it's a start!  It's quite different from my table loom - but is so lightweight and portable and can easily be removed from the stand.


I'm sure I'll get better with practice ;)



10 comments:

  1. I love the old fashioned look of the loom with the pale wood! It is awesome that some people still weave textiles, I would love to learn one day, but I have a lot of other things I have to learn first! Maybe I will have time by the time I retire! :P

    Naughty kitties! I am sure they wanted to 'help'!

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    1. I could pretend to be the Lady of Shalott!

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    2. Yes, or Penelope from the Iliad!! ;)

      I love the look of looms too! I especially love the floor looms - but that cost and floorspace will have to wait until our next house (in about 10 years time!).

      I think a lot of people use rigid heddle looms - they are by far the most popular, and they're relatively cheap and easy to use. Anything with more than a couple of shafts is getting into 'commitment' territory, lol!

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  3. That transparency inlay weaving looks so cool. I can hardly wait to see your first project with skulls and bats, Michelle! Will you be making scarves using that technique, too? I worry that at my age, I wouldn't need the extra “warmth” of one of your infinity scarves. I might do better with a lighter weight one. LOL

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    1. Haaha, yes I will eventually be doing infinity scarves in this method too - they will be much more luxurious than the wool, and definitely lighter weight ;)

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  4. I'm looking forward to your first scarf using the transparency inlay method

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    1. So am I! I hope it works out ;)
      Have you seen the awesome work by Wy Wang posted on the Ashford Facebook page? It's very inspiring!!

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  5. luverly.

    keep up the explorations Michelle. I'm hoping to see some really jazzy twills sometime.

    misha

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    1. Thanks Misha! Most of what I've been doing on my floor loom are 'jazzy twills' ... so this one will be saved for 'artier' stuff - once I figure out how it operates and what I can do with it!! ;)

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