Like an Amusement Park. . .

for Weavers!, the Hands on Weaving Demonstration, hosted by The Handweavers’ Guild of Connecticut

449 CT weaving guild sign

was a wonderful way for us to spend a Saturday. Guild members demonstrated about twenty different types of weaving, most of which visitors were welcome to try too.

449 let's weave!

As always, kids looooved the potholder looms!! Did you have one of these as a kid?

449 potholder loom

They could also try their hand at weaving on simple cardboard looms,

449 cardboard looms

or a back strap loom.

449 backstrap loom

Or they could make a CD spindle and learn to spin!

449 cd spindle

Some of the more uncommon types of weaving/looms shown were Card Weaving, which DH had never even heard of before,

449 card weaving

Inkle Looms for making belts, handles and tapes,

449 inkle looms

an 8 Shaft Table Loom, with which you can create complex patterning. . .

449 8 shaft table loom

by flipping down a different combination of those handles on the top of the loom before each throw of the shuttle,

and a Navajo Tapestry Loom. I love that she’s using an ordinary fork as a beater!

449 Navajo loom449 Navajo beater

Since I own two, I’m far more familiar with Rigid Heddle Looms than with any of these other ways to weave. Here’s a cute little one called an Easy Weaver.

449 rigid heddle loom

And that’s me talking about floating warp threads at the selvedges while sitting at a much larger Rigid Heddle Loom, one on a floor stand.

449 RHL on stand

Now I’m seriously thinking about putting one of my Rigid Heddle Looms on a stand! DH says it wouldn’t be hard to build one to fit.

Who knows what I, or rather my hands, were talking about here. lol.

449 RHL talking

But the photo shows how the loom is attached to the stand and that could be helpful to us later.

DH and I both added a few picks to this twill. This was his first time at a loom,

449 dh weaves

and my first time using a boat shuttle!

449 'our' twill

Check out this woman’s shuttle throwing technique. . .

449 boat shuttle 1

Here’s another, who holds it quite differently. . .

449 boat shuttle 2

I gotta get me one! Weaving goes so much faster when you use a boat shuttle instead of a stick one!!

There were so many kinds of floor looms to look at that I soon lost track of which was which and found it easier to just talk about what people were weaving. I was assured that this pattern isn’t nearly as complicated as it seems when seen as fabric on the loom. . .

449 complex weave

and as a draft, the chart you follow when threading the loom and while weaving.

449 weaving draft

DH caught me talking with my hands again, lol.

449 'talking'

Check out the beautiful hand-woven tote that I’m holding! If I remember correctly, this volunteer was showing how it’s fabric, a block weave?, was made by alternating single picks of a heavy yarn, wound on the long stick shuttle in her left hand, and a much finer one, which is on a bobbin in the boat shuttle.

Playing with all these floor looms made me reminisce about mine a little. It’s an ORCO (Oriental Rug Company) 74, which I bought in about 1975. Can you believe how little a 36″ floor loom cost back then?

449 my loom

When we were first married I reassembled it after each move even though I didn’t have the time to weave on it. But, after a while, I quit even putting it together and now it’s been in our garage, in pieces, for many years. It’s Big and Heavy. Maybe if I really get into weaving again, I’ll decide it’s worth the bother to make a place for it in our little house.

P.S. I discovered that ORCO 74 looms are still being built, now by Great Northern Weaving of Kalamazoo, MI.

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3 Responses to Like an Amusement Park. . .

  1. DIANNE VITTONE says:

    I’VE BEEN ENJOYING YOUR BLOG FOR QUITE SOMETIME NOW. I AM A CROCHETER AND AN OFF-LOOM BEADWEAVER. YOUR PHOTO OF THE INKLE LOOM BRINGS BACK MEMORIES OF MY MIDDLE SCHOOL YEARS WEAVING MANY BELTS FOR FAMILY AND FRIENDS. I EVEN SOLD SOME!!! THANKS FOR ALL THAT YOU DO!!!
    P.S. I AM ORIGINALLY FROM BETHEL, CT. BUT OHIO HAS BEEN MY HOME FOR NEARLY 20 YEARS. I MISS NEW ENGLAND. BLESSINGS, DIANNE VITTONE

    • Hello, Diane, and Welcome to alottastitches!
      I’m very happy to hear that you’ve been a reader for a while. 😀

      Both a crocheter and off-loom beadweaver, eh? Then I have to ask. . . have you ever combined the two crafts?
      Buried somewhere in this blog is a link to an on-line article about how to crochet with beads. It gave me the idea of putting pony beads into some of my ripples. But I only got as far as buying some beads. lol.

      It’s always nice to hear from a fellow mid-westerner. I grew up in Michigan and I miss its expansive skies. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the trees here in New England, but sometimes, especially during a dramatic thunderstorm, I would appreciate being able to see from horizon to horizon.

      Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment; I hope we’ll hear from you again soon!

  2. Christa says:

    I still have my potholder loom from when I was a kid and still use it to this day 🙂

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