Off The Loom

Project 1

Finished and off the loom

Finished and off the loom

From the DVD, “Tapestry Weaving” by Nancy Harvey, my first project is finished.  I decided to make a pillow from both this weaving and project two.  They’re conveniently sized at 14″ x 14″.  I found a nifty way to sew or rather weave them together – actually it’s both, but more on that when the time comes.  It’s always a good feeling to remove a project from the loom after you’re finished.  I began this exercise to familiarize myself with the methods and techniques of conventional tapestry weaving.  I still fall back to some of the familiar methods of Navajo weaving at times, but I think they can complement each other.  

Green shape is complete, now to work on the Blue

Green shape is complete, now to work on the Blue

I like the method I used for smoothing out the joins between shapes.  Around my half way mark I decided to weave in two picks of each color over the finished shapes.  It did smooth it a bit, but I need to get some criticism and see what other, more experienced tapestry weavers recommend.  I would prefer my joins to be even more smooth.  Perhaps that’s not possible with the particular shapes I had to work with.  After all, we’re weaving back and forth over a horizontal plane, not diagonally.  Darn physics!!!  I expect the next project to go a little smoother since I have more experience with the majority of the techniques learned in that particular project.  

Weft taken across the whole shape, and red section started

Weft taken across the whole shape, and red section started

My project is nearly reversible.  I say, nearly, because I did leave a few tails out as Nancy did.  These tails were simply tucked to the back of the work, no knot, no fuzzy end, no nothing.  They seem secure, but I did feel the need to run the ends through some of the weft with a needle – just in case.  This left a little bump on the backside, and made it a tad non-reversible.  Since this project will become a pillow, reversibility isn’t an issue.  I may start leaving more ends out behind my work, not having to lay in a tapered fuzzy end at the beginning of a design element has its appeal.

Double half hitch knots around warp pairs to secure

Double half hitch knots around warp pairs to secure

I ended this project as I started it – with a black hem.  This hem will be folded to the back of course.  Then I tied double half hitches to warp pairs to secure the warp.  After all the Navajo weaving I’ve done, the whole notion of finishing my weaving with hems and knots seems counter productive.  However, I was able to warp my loom and get started in a relatively short period of time, and with no friction cuts to my hands and fingers.  I loosened the warp with my handy dandy tension device, then cut it off the loom several inches away from the weaving.  I like to steam my weaving, and I prefer to do this while it’s still on the loom, but I anxiously cut it off my loom first.  Nancy Harvey steams her projects off the loom, so I guess I can too.  It doesn’t look like it needs steaming, but I think it will do some good.  The warp ends can be cut down to an inch, then the hem rolled over and tacked down with the warp ends under the hem – out of sight and out of the way.  It seems very secure with the double half hitches.  Now I need to get that second project warped.

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A website devoted to learning, sharing and teaching a wide range of fiber arts. Inkle, Tablet and Navajo style weaving, Spinning, Knitting, Crochet, Sewing and Lace Making. Silver Work, Beading and Tool Making grace my bench as well.

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