We have survived the heat wave and a hailstorm; all in the same week. Our vehicles and holiday trailer did not go unscathed though. There is more heat to come, but I’m okay with that. As long as it doesn’t bring more storms (yeah, okay I can dream) then I’ll be one happy camper.
Speaking of camping, it’s not something we will be doing until we fix the window and the top vent cover. GRRR! As the trailer is an older one, the pane of glass shouldn’t be too expensive to replace.
I have always liked weaving, and like to try new methods from time to time. I bought a small loom about three years ago, plus made my own peg loom and weaving sticks. I have made some rugs from wool and alpaca yarn on the loom, and a fabric one on the peg loom. My weaving sticks have been used more for demonstration of the technique than anything else, as I have taken apart any straps I have made. With that being said, they are my best-seller in my Etsy Shop.
I have recently fallen in love with card weaving (aka tablet weaving). I do have to admit, it did take me some time to wrap my head around how it worked. Unlike the weaving I was used to, card weaving utilizes the warp threads for the design, as opposed to the weft. My first project was a narrow strap using ten warp threads and three colours. The selvage is a different colour more for the sake of seeing how it goes together than anything else (for me anyway). Yesterday I decided I was going to go with more cards and make a wider strap. I’m not quite sure what I’m going to use it for yet, but I do like the way it’s turning out.
To make the cards, I initially used cardstock, but quickly realized it wouldn’t hold up for a larger project. As I like to recycle when I can, I cut some containerless plastic lids into two inch squares. I then took a heavy duty hole punch and made a hole in each corner of the square. After the holes were punched, I rounded off the corners with a pair of scissors. This ensures the turning goes more smoothly and my fingers aren’t covered in band-aids.
I cut my warp threads approximately five feet long. The finished strap will be considerably shorter, as the length is taken up as the weft thread is added. Each card has four warp threads. Half of the squares were threaded top to bottom, while the other half was threaded bottom to top. To find some good tutorials, Pinterest is the place to look. That’s where I found the one that helped me. If you follow me on Pinterest, check out my weaving board for ideas, inspiration and simpler instructions.
My biggest challenge is to keep the tension. I am currently using my peg loom (most of the pegs removed), but I would like to have a loom specifically for card weaving. I do have to say, it isn’t for lack of trying. So far any attempts at making a loom have failed, but I’m not about to give up.
I am using cotton thread (doily size) for my initial projects, but do want to graduate to wool and alpaca. According to any tutorials I have seen so far, acrylic yarn is discouraged because it is so stretchy. Hemp cord would also work nicely, and it is available in a variety of colours. Oh, the possibilities!
The photo is of my new project, which I do not have a pattern for. I have a hunch anything I make using this method will end up being one-of-a-kind. I am using 20 cards, and am turning each set a quarter turn ahead before passing the weft through. I am going eight quarter turns ahead, then eight quarter turns back to get my design. As long as I keep track of where I’m at in the turning process, all is good.
The stitch holder is used to keep the cards aligned when I’m not weaving, plus it’s my indicator as to which way the cards need to be turned when I start again. The front holes mean they have to be turned forward, and when they are in the rear holes it means they have to be turned backward. The system is working well for me so far, now that I actually have one.
I think my next project will be a pair of shoelaces. How cool would that be?
Have you tried card weaving? If so, what has your biggest challenge been?